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Vassiriki Abou Diaby (born 11 May 1986) is a Frenchmarker international footballer of Ivorianmarker descent currently playing for Arsenal. His natural position is as a central midfielder, but on occasions has played as a left-sided midfielder and second striker for his club.

Club career

Early career

Diaby was born in Parismarker and began playing for his local club Red Star Paris before joining Paris Saint-Germain at age 13 despite being a Marseille supporter, subsequently leaving the club two years later. While attending Paris-Saint-Germain, he also regularly attended classes at the famed Clairefontaine academymarker. He joined Auxerre in 2002 and was a member of the Auxerre team that won the national U-16 championship that year. His coach at the time, Christian Henna, described him as a "very good technician, elegant, quick". He developed into a tall, powerful midfielder. Diaby signed as a professional at Auxerre, playing seven matches in 2004–05 and six in the first half of 2005–06. His first match for Auxerre's first team came as a last-minute substitute against Rennes on 14 August 2004.

Arsenal

2005–06 season

Before joining Arsenal, Diaby reportedly turned down a move to Arsenal's rivals Chelsea. He was given the number 2 shirt at Arsenal, which had been vacant since the retirement of Lee Dixon. On 1 April 2006, Diaby came off the bench to score his first goal for Arsenal, in their 5–0 rout of Aston Villa, after being set-up by fellow Arsenal newcomer Emmanuel Adebayor.

2007–08 season

On 12 December 2007 Diaby scored against Steaua Bucharest in the Champions League, opening the scoring for Arsenal in their 2–1 win. He scored his second Champions League goal for Arsenal on 8 April 2008, opening the scoring and giving Arsenal the advantage over Liverpool F.C. at Anfieldmarker.

2008–09 season

Diaby started in Arsenal's away Champions League group stage game against Fenerbahçemarker, scoring in an 5–2 victory. He then scored his first Premier League goal of the season in the 2–2 draw with Aston Villa on 26 December 2008. Diaby finshed the season scoring Arsenal's third goal in the 4–1 win over Stoke City.

2009–10 season

Diaby started the season on the bench but a back injury to fellow Arsenal midfielder Denilson allowed him to move in to the first team. He then played alongside Alex Song and formed a successful partnership scoring four goals before picking up an injury against Wolves which endangered his place in the France squad for the World Cup playoff against Ireland.

International career

Diaby has been capped 14 times for the France U-19 side, captaining the team in their successful U-19 European Championship campaign in 2005. In February 2006, he made his début with the France U-21 squad.

Diaby missed the 2006 UEFA Champions League Final against FC Barcelona, as well as the UEFA U-21 Championship 2006, in which he was expected to take part with France, due to a broken and dislocated ankle.

On 15 March 2007, he was called up to the French senior squad for their two forthcoming fixtures, making his début for France on 24 March when he came on for Florent Malouda in a Euro 2008 qualifier against Lithuania. He then gained a starting place in the following match, against Austria, playing 57 minutes, ending in a 1–0 victory for France.

Honours

Arsenal

International

Club career statistics

(correct as of 7 November 2009)


Club Season League Cup Europe Total
Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists
AJ Auxerre 2004–05 4 0 - - - - 2 0 - 6 0 -
2005–06 6 1 - - - - 2 0 - 6 1 -
Total 10 1 - - - - 4 0 - 12 1 -
Arsenal 2005–06 12 1 1 2 0 0 2 0 0 16 1 1
2006–07 12 1 0 5 0 1 1 0 0 18 1 1
2007–08 15 1 1 7 1 1 6 2 0 28 4 2
2008–09 24 3 2 5 0 0 7 1 0 36 4 2
2009-10 10 3 2 0 0 0 6 1 1 16 4 3
Total 73 9 6 19 1 2 22 4 1 114 14 9


France career statistics

(correct as of 25 January 2008)
France EURO World Cup Qualifying matches EURO Qualifying matches World Cup Friendly internationals Total
Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists
France 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 0 0


References

  1. Arsenal.com: Diaby - My history with Paris St Germain
  2. Arsenal complete signing of Diaby
  3. History, soccernet.espn.go.com, accessed 3 March 2009.
  4. Includes FA Cup, League Cup and FA Community Shield


External links




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