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Samir Nasri (born 26 June 1987) is a Frenchmarker international footballer who plays his club football for the English Premier League side Arsenal.

A naturally right-footed player, he generally plays as a wide forward for Arsenal but has also been used in central and defensive midfield roles when needed. He has been hailed by many as the "new Zizou" after impressing at his boyhood club Marseille.

Previously a regular for France at the youth level, Nasri was named in the Euro 2008 squad but received little playing time. Since then, he has established himself as a regular in the national team.

Early life

Nasri's parents moved to France from Algeriamarker. His father is from Constantinemarker and his mother is a native of Biskramarker. Nasri grew up in La Gavotte Peyret, a northern suburb of Marseillemarker. He often played on the streets, where he learnt many of his skills. He used to play for the local gang team, but after much violence, his parents signed him up to the football club Pennes Mirabeau at the age of six. Nasri himself has claimed that his tough upbringing actually helped him with his quest to play professional football, "if I can be brave enough to face a knife I am brave enough to face a tough tackler." He spent two seasons at Pennes before being scouted by Olympique de Marseille in 1996.

Club career

Marseille

Nasri began playing with Marseille when he was 9 years old. He started playing in Ligue 1 in the 2004/2005 season at the age of 17, when he started 13 games and came on as a substitute in 11 games, scoring one goal. The next season got him experience in both the UEFA Cup (10 games; no goals) and the Intertoto Cup (one game; one goal). In the 2006/2007 season he scored his first goal of the year in Ligue 1 late in the season on 29 April 2007, when he started the match against FC Sochaux-Montbéliard and helped his team to a 4–2 victory. This win allowed Marseille to climb into fourth place with just four games remaining, putting them into the UEFA Cup qualifying spot. Nasri was part of the squad that lost in the Coupe de France final in 2006 versus Paris Saint-Germain and he also lost in the 2007 final against Sochaux.

On 20 May 2007, Nasri was named French Ligue 1 Young Player of the Year ahead of Jimmy Briand and Karim Benzema. He was voted Marseille's player of the year by the fans, receiving 62% of the votes. In addition, like many, he was dubbed the "new Zizou" for his vision and dribbling skills

Arsenal

Nasri scored in his Premier League debut against West Bromwich Albion with a close range effort, after four minutes of the first game of the season, on 16 August 2008. On 27 August in the 3rd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg against FC Twente, Nasri scored in the 26th minute. On 8 November 2008, Nasri scored both of Arsenal's goals in a 2–1 win over Manchester United. On 21 March, Nasri made the scoresheet again as Arsenal defeated Newcastle 3–1 at St. James' Parkmarker. He concluded his debut season with Arsenal with 7 goals and 5 assists.

International career

Nasri has been involved in the French national set up for a long time, progressing through the Under-16s, 17s, 18s, 19s and 21s. He was part of the team that won the 2004 UEFA U-17 Championship, scoring the game-winning goal in the final match. Nasri received his first cap for the senior team on 28 March 2007 against Austria, in a home friendly match at the age of 19. He delivered a free kick low into the box from which teammate Karim Benzema scored the only goal of the match. He scored his first senior international goal in his third appearance for the senior team in a 1–0 win against Georgia on 6 June 2007 in a UEFA Euro 2008 qualifier. Nasri was named in Raymond Domenech's final squad for Euro 2008; at age 20, he was one of the youngest members of the French squad selected for the final tournament. He made two appearances as a substitute and played for 32 minutes.

Style of play

Nasri has been compared to Arsenal legend Robert Pirès by Arsène Wenger who also described him as a quick and technically outstanding player with mobility and vision.

Personal life

Samir has been in a relationship with the French tennis player Tatiana Golovin since May 2008 and he lives with her in Hampsteadmarker.

Honours

Marseille



International



Individual



Club career statistics

(correct as of 21 November 2009)
Club Season League Cup Europe Total
Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists Apps Goals Assists
Marseille 2004–05 24 1 - 1 0 - 0 0 0 25 1 -
2005–06 30 1 - 5 0 - 10 0 - 45 1 -
2006–07 37 3 - 7 0 - 4 0 - 48 3 -
2007–08 30 6 - 4 0 - 8 0 - 42 6 -
Total 121 11 - 17 0 - 22 0 - 160 11 -
Arsenal 2008–09 29 6 2 5 0 3 10 1 0 44 7 5
2009–10 2 0 0 1 0 1 2 2 0 5 2 1
Total 31 6 2 6 0 4 11 2 0 48 8 6
Career total 152 17 2 23 0 4 33 2 0 208 19 6


References

  1. http://www.laprovence.com/articles/2008/05/21/457773-Region-en-direct-Vu-sur-LCM-La-Gavotte-Peyret-reagit-au-depart-de-Nasri.php
  2. http://www.laprovence.com/articles/2007/03/16/20070316-MARSEILLE-Quand-Samir-Nasri-dribblait-les-copains-a-la-Gavotte.php
  3. http://www.laprovence.com/articles/2007/03/22/20070322-FRANCE-Nasri-itineraire-d-un-surdoue.php
  4. Samir Nasri won Young Player of the Year at Sports Illustrated, sportsillustrated.cnn.com, accessed 31 October 2008.
  5. Newcastle United 1-3 Arsenal
  6. Châteauroux celebrates French win, uefa.com, accessed 15 August 2008.
  7. Nasri agrees to join Arsenal from Marseille, arsenal.com, accessed August 18, 2008.
  8. Wenger – Nasri has ingredients to succeed, arsenal.com, accessed August 18, 2008.
  9. Wenger - Nasri has a bit of Pires about him, arsenal.com, accessed August 18, 2008.
  10. [1], independent.co.uk, accessed June 02, 2009.
  11. Statistics, soccernet.espn.go.com, accessed October 30, 2008.
  12. Includes Coupe de France and Coupe de la Ligue.
  13. Includes FA Cup, League Cup and FA Community Shield.


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