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Olivier Dacourt

Olivier Dacourt
Full nameOlivier Nicolas André Dacourt
Date of birth (1974-09-25) 25 September 1974 (age 41)
Place of birthMontreuil-sous-Bois, France
HeightScript error: No such module "convert".
Playing positionMidfielder
Youth career
Senior career*
2000–2003Leeds United57(3)
2003Roma (loan)18(0)
2009Fulham (loan)9(0)
2009–2010Standard Liège9(0)
National team

Olivier Nicolas André Dacourt (born 25 September 1974 in Montreuil-sous-Bois) is a former French footballer. He is also a former French international and is best known for his spells at Leeds United, AS Roma and Internazionale.

Club career

Early career

Dacourt made his debut match in Division 1 with Strasbourg on 20 March 1993 in an away game with Auxerre, which Strasbourg lost 2–0. On 24 May 1997, he scored his first Ligue 1 goal for Strasbourg in an away match against Paris Saint-Germain, however, Strasbourg lost the match 2–1.

Dacourt transferred to Everton in 1998 and his debut game in the Premier League was a 0–0 draw against Aston Villa on 15 August 1998. On 17 February 1999, he scored his first goal in the 5–0 victory against Middlesbrough. Dacourt became a fan favourite with the Everton supporters, but was booed at the club's final home game of the season in May 1999 against West Ham after comments in a French article that he was unhappy at the club and looking to leave in the summer.

Dacourt returned to France after one season at Everton playing for RC Lens, where he impressed and earned a multi-million-pound move back to the Premier League to the Yorkshire club Leeds United.

Leeds United

Dacourt joined Leeds United from Lens in a £7.2 million move in 2000, and broke Leeds' transfer record at the time. He proved to be an instant hero at Elland Road with his tenacious style and ball winning play. His time at Leeds saw them reach the Champions League semi finals and also finishing in the top 4 of the Premier League. He was a regular in centre midfield under manager David O'Leary, mainly partnering David Batty at the heart of Leeds' midfield. His form at Leeds also saw Dacourt become a regular for the French national side. But after the sacking of O'Leary, his replacement Terry Venables dropped Dacourt from the Leeds team and favoured players like Paul Okon ahead of him in the pecking order.

Venables had a public falling out with Dacourt, in which Venables claimed he 'would personally drive Dacourt' away from the club. With Leeds' financial problems Dacourt was loaned out to A.S. Roma, and during his time out on loan Venables was sacked and replaced by Peter Reid with many believing Dacourt would return, but during the summer his loan move to Roma was made permanent. Dacourt proclaimed that he would like to return to Leeds one day in the future after playing in his former teammate Lucas Radebe's testimonial.

Roma & Internazionale

Dacourt joined A.S. Roma on loan, and after 6 months the loan move was made permanent as Dacourt's parent club Leeds United needed to raise some much needed money, the transfer cost Roma €5M. He signed a 3-year contract, worth €4 million in gross each season.[1] After being on the losing side in the Coppa Italia final against Internazionale in 2005–06, Dacourt joined the club from Roma on a two-year contract in accordance with the Bosman ruling.[2][3]

Originally signed as a backup player for Internazionale, he became a key player of the league victory, in light of all the injuries to Patrick Vieira. On 2 December 2007, against Fiorentina, he damaged his left knee, with a torn cruciate ligament and damage to two other ligaments in it. He was expected to be out for the rest of the 2007–08 season.

In the 2008–09 season after recovering from injury, Dacourt did not feature as regularly and was not in Inter manager José Mourinho's plans.

Fulham & Standard Liège

On 2 February 2009 he joined English side Fulham on loan until the end of the 2008–2009 season after being signed by Roy Hodgson.[4] However he had to settle for being confined to mainly substitute appearances due to the impressive form of Fulham's midfield and also Dacourt picking up some injury niggles, Dacourt's move to Fulham was not made permanent come the summer, Dacourt briefly returned to Internazionale where his contract then expired and he became a free agent.

Dacourt signed a one-year contract with Standard de Liège on 23 September 2009. He was brought in to replace Steven Defour who had an injury on his foot and should be inactive for three months, Defour was the central midfield partner to Axel Witsel.[5] On 8 February 2010 Standard de Liège declared the end of his contract.[6]

International career

Dacourt played for France in the 1996 Olympic Games.

After impressing for Leeds United, His first senior appearance in the national team came against South Korea in the FIFA Confederations Cup in 2001, which France won 0–5. He also appeared in the 2004 European Championship.


  1. ^ "Trasferimento a Titolo Definitivo di Olivier Dacourt" [Olivier Dacourt transfer in permanent deal]. AS Roma (in Italian). 10 July 2006. Retrieved 15 November 2010. 
  2. ^ "Inter add three to their ranks". 12 July 2006. Retrieved 15 November 2010. 
  3. ^ "Dacourt, Maicon, Maxwell Sign for Inter". FC Internazinoale Milano ( 12 July 2006. Retrieved 15 November 2010. 
  4. ^ "Olivier Dacourt joins Fulham". F.C. Internazionale Milano. 2 February 2009. Retrieved 2 February 2009. 
  5. ^ Officiel : Dacourt au Standard
  6. ^ Olivier Dacourt

External links