Petit (centre) in 2000
|Full name||Emmanuel Laurent Petit|
|Date of birth||22 September 1970|
|Place of birth||Dieppe, France|
|Height||1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).
Emmanuel Laurent "Manu" Petit (French pronunciation: [ɛmanɥɛl pəˈti]; born 22 September 1970) is a French retired footballer, who played club football for Monaco, Arsenal, Barcelona, and Chelsea. He represented France at international level, and scored the third goal in France's 3–0 victory in the 1998 FIFA World Cup Final.
Petit was born in Dieppe, Seine-Maritime. He began his career at minor club ES Arques-la-Bataille, before being signed by Arsène Wenger's AS Monaco at the age of 18. He made his debut soon after and played in the 1989 French Cup final. Petit became a regular at Monaco, playing at left midfielder or centre midfielder; in 1991 he won the Cup with Monaco, and also played in the 1992 European Cup Winners' Cup final (which Monaco lost to Werder Bremen). In 1996–97, his final season at Monaco, he captained his side to the Ligue 1 title.
Despite interest from Levski Sofia, Rangers and Tottenham Hotspur, Petit joined Arsenal in June 1997 for £2.5m, where he was reunited with his former Monaco manager, Arsène Wenger. Wenger switched Petit from central midfielder to defensive midfielder, and partnered him with fellow Frenchman Patrick Vieira. The French duo formed a midfield partnership which brought instant success, as Petit won the Double with Arsenal in his very first season, clinching both the Premier League title and the FA Cup. Altogether, in the three seasons in his Arsenal career, Petit made 118 appearances and scored 11 goals, including a stunning drive from outside the area against Derby County (which was also the winning goal), during the 1997–98 season.
Petit moved to Barcelona (together with Arsenal team-mate Marc Overmars) in the summer of 2000 for £7m (€14m). At Barcelona he was moved back into defence, and suffered a rash of niggling injuries; as a result, he failed to settle and could not hold down a regular place. In his biography, published in 2008, the midfielder gave his time at Barcelona a special chapter, in which he exposed that coach Llorenç Serra Ferrer didn't even know what position he played when he joined the team. His only goal for Barcelona came on 13 May at home to Rayo Vallecano in a 5-1 win.
After his first season at the Camp Nou, he was linked with moves back to England with Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea. He moved back to England to sign for Chelsea in 2001 for £7,500,000. He initially was a first-team regular for the Blues in a largely disappointing debut season and played in the 2002 FA Cup Final  which Chelsea lost to his old club, Arsenal. He scored his first goal for Chelsea in a 2–1 win over Derby County on 30 March 2002. His second season saw a significant improvement, as he formed an impressive midfield partnership with Frank Lampard as Chelsea impressed in the winner-takes-all final game of the season against Liverpool as Chelsea secured the fourth UEFA Champions League berth. He also scored twice throughout the season: against Everton in the League Cup and former club Arsenal in the league. However, after a series of knee injuries, he spent much of his final season of his career on the sidelines, and he was released on a free transfer in the summer of 2004, his final appearance for the club coming against Blackburn Rovers on 1 February 2004.
When Chelsea released him, Arsenal were going to resign him but they decided not to after having a closer look at his fitness. After spending six months looking for a new club, including a training stint with Bolton Wanderers, Petit announced his retirement on 20 January 2005, when he found out he required a knee operation and would probably never regain full fitness.
Playing for the France national team, Petit earned 63 caps and scored 6 international goals in his career and won the 1998 FIFA World Cup and the Euro 2000. He scored twice in the 1998 World Cup, the first came from a powerful shot from just outside the box against Denmark, which turned out to be the match winner, and a second in the final against Brazil. The goal he scored in the final was particularly memorable, as he had embarked on an optimistic run across field before calmly slotting in the goal in the final minute of regular time. That same goal happened to be the 1,000th goal in the history of the Fédération Française de Football, and the last World Cup goal of the Twentieth Century. France won the match 3–0. An earlier Petit corner kick had set up Zinedine Zidane's header for France's first goal. Petit was also part of the 2002 FIFA World Cup squad, which failed to advance past the group stages and failed to score a single goal in three matches during their defence of the trophy.
Petit married French actress Agathe de La Fontaine, in 2000, but later divorced her in 2002 after having one child, Zoe. He now shares a life with Maria Servello, with whom he had another child, Violet, in 2007. He has also been a football analyst in France.
His brother Olivier was an amateur footballer when Petit was a teenager. While playing for his club Arques in 1988, Olivier collapsed and was rushed to hospital where he was pronounced dead due to a blood clot of the brain. In his biography, Petit explained that this event shocked him to such an extent that it almost made him quit football. He viewed his brother as a gifted young man who had good looks and did well in all his endeavours, whether it was football or education.
In July 1998 Petit won £17,000 worth of francs on a fruit machine in a Monte Carlo hotel. He gave it all to charity.
Petit's squad number at all his clubs was 17.
In June 2011, Petit shaved his hair for charity, raising £34,000, he also shaved his beard.
He also featured in an episode of The bill in a Christmas special.
|Club performance||League||Cup||League Cup||Continental||Total|
|France||League||Coupe de France||Coupe de la Ligue||Europe||Total|
|England||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|1997–98||Arsenal||FA Premier League||32||2||7||0||3||0||2||0||44||2|
|Spain||League||Copa del Rey||Supercopa de España||Europe||Total|
|England||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|2001–02||Chelsea||FA Premier League||27||1||6||0||2||0||3||0||38||1|
|France national team|
- Orders and special awards
- "Barcelona Statistics". WorldFootball.net. Retrieved 24 October 2013.
- Webster, Rupert. "Petit's Big Cup Final Role". Sky Sports.
- "Chelsea defeat battling Derby". BBC. 30 March 2002. Retrieved 2 November 2009.
- "Awesome Chelsea thrash Everton". BBC. 4 December 2002. Retrieved 2 November 2009.
- "Arsenal edge past Chelsea". BBC. 1 January 2003. Retrieved 2 November 2009.
- "Blackburn 2–3 Chelsea". BBC. 1 February 2004. Retrieved 12 March 2010.
- www.telegraph.co.uk – "Moment of quiet reflection for Arsenal's flexible friend
- Fordyce, Tom (17 January 2003). "How to lose £50,000 the football way". BBC News. Retrieved 2 May 2010.
- Emmanuel Petit career stats at Soccerbase
- "France honors World Cup winners – Government gives Legion of Honor to players, coaches". CNN/SI. 1 September 1998. Retrieved 20 July 2006.
- "Décret du 24 juillet 1998 portant nomination à titre exceptionnel". JORF 1998 (170): 11376. 25 July 1998. PREX9801916D. Retrieved 10 March 2009.
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