Djemba-Djemba playing for OB in 2008
|Full name||Eric Daniel Djemba-Djemba|
|Date of birth||4 May 1981|
|Place of birth||Douala, Cameroon|
|Height||5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)|
|Current club||St. Mirren|
|2007||→ Burnley (loan)||15||(0)|
|2012–2013||Hapoel Tel Aviv||28||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 1 March 2014.
† Appearances (Goals).
Eric Daniel Djemba-Djemba (born 4 May 1981) is a Cameroonian footballer who plays as a midfielder for Scottish club St. Mirren, having been released by Serbian club Partizan in December 2013. He has previously played club football in France, England, Qatar, Denmark and Israel. In international competition, he represents Cameroon, having appeared for his country 24 times, including at the 2002 FIFA World Cup.
Djemba-Djemba rose to prominence with Nantes in France, where he forged a successful partnership with Mathieu Berson. His impressive performances as a feisty and uncompromising tackler for the French club earned him a dream move to Manchester United for £3.5 million in the summer of 2003, signed by Alex Ferguson as a possible eventual successor to the 31-year-old Roy Keane.
Arriving in England, Djemba-Djemba was unknown to many fans and pundits alike. He established his aggressive style on his debut against Arsenal in the FA Community Shield, with a tackle on Arsenal's Sol Campbell which Arsène Wenger called "obscene".
In 18 months at Old Trafford, Djemba-Djemba found it difficult to maintain a period of sustained form, and he was eventually unable to establish himself as a player capable of filling captain Roy Keane's shoes. A highlight during his United career was when he scored a looping volley against Leeds United in the League Cup. With the score at 2–2 and 3 minutes of extra time left, Quinton Fortune swung in a corner which reached Djemba-Djemba, who hit it first time and it looped over Leeds goalkeeper Paul Robinson which secured a 3–2 win and progression to the next round.
Djemba-Djemba was sold to Aston Villa in the January 2005 transfer window for a fee of £1.5 million. However, the move did little to restore the player's reputation as he found it difficult to move ahead of Gavin McCann and Steven Davis in Villa's midfield. After being played only once, as a late substitute against Arsenal in the first ever game at the Emirates Stadium, by new Villa manager Martin O'Neill on the first day of the 2006–07 season, Djemba-Djemba was loaned out to Championship club Burnley for the remainder of the season in the January transfer window.
Djemba-Djemba made his first appearance for Burnley on 13 January 2007 against Southampton, playing the full 90 minutes. Early in his time at Turf Moor, Djemba-Djemba was sent off for the Lancashire side after a second bookable offence at Derby County; however he impressed with his skillful and effective play during his loan spell.
During July 2007, all signs pointed to Djemba-Djemba leaving Villa Park after he was the only member of the first-team squad not to be included in the North American tour and on 2 August 2007, his contract was terminated by Aston Villa.
On 16 July 2008, Djemba-Djemba signed a three-year contract with Danish outfit Odense Boldklub, the contract was later extended with a year. He made his Odense debut against former club Aston Villa in the Intertoto Cup. Odense drew the match 1–1, losing 2–1 on aggregate. In his career in Odense, Djemba-Djemba has impressed the club's fans, with his good ball skills and great performances. In his first season as an Odense player, he played tremendous football and was by many called the league's best player.[by whom?]
Hapoel Tel Aviv
On 24 July 2013, Djemba-Djemba signed a two-year contract with Serbian side Partizan. He made his debut in a Champions League qualifying match away to Ludogorets Razgrad on 31 July 2013, coming on as a substitute in the 64th minute. However, Djemba-Djemba hardly played for Partizan during the first half of the season. The club's signing of Nikola Drinčić on 20 December meant that Djemba-Djemba became surplus to requirements and his contract was terminated on 23 December 2013.
On 5 February 2014, Djemba-Djemba signed a short-term deal with Scottish Premiership club St. Mirren. He has said he hopes his move to St. Mirren can help him gain a place in the Cameroon squad for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
- Manchester United
- "Berson going nowhere". Sky Sports. 31 January 2011. Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- Buckingham, Mark. "United sign Djemba-Djemba". Sky Sports (BSkyB). Retrieved 1 September 2013.
- Davies, Christopher (16 August 2003). "It's business as usual as for Wenger and Arsenal". Telegraph.co.uk (Telegraph Media Group). Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- "Leeds 2–3 Man Utd". BBC Sport (British Broadcasting Corporation). 28 October 2003. Retrieved 16 September 2009.
- "Man Utd wreak Greek havoc". British Broadcasting Corporation. 16 September 2003. Retrieved 3 November 2009.
- "Djemba-Djemba wraps up Villa move". BBC. 31 January 2005. Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- Austin, Simon (20 August 2006). "Arsenal 1–1 Aston Villa". BBC Sport (British Broadcasting Corporation). Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- "Burnley seal Djemba-Djemba loan". BBC. 12 January 2007. Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- "Southampton 0-0 Burnley". BBC. 13 January 2007. Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- "Managers sent to the stands as Howard keeps Derby soaring". The Guardian. 31 January 2007. Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- "Where are they now? Eric Djemba-Djemba". Birmingham Mail. 6 November 2012. Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- "Djemba-Djemba released by Villa". Daily Mail. 3 August 2007. Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- "Djemba-Djemba released by Villa". London Evening Standard. 3 August 2007. Retrieved 21 October 2013.
- "Djemba-Djemba signed for Hapoel: I found a warm home" (in Hebrew). ONE. 14 August 2012. Retrieved 14 August 2012.
- "Đemba Đemba potpisao za Šampione" (in Serbian). partizan.rs. 24 July 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
- "Partizan raskinuo ugovor sa Đemba Đembom" [Partizan terminated the contract with Djemba Djemba]. Novosti.rs (Kompanija Novosti). 23 December 2013. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
- "Saints sign Djemba-Djemba". saintmirren.net. 5 February 2014. Retrieved 5 February 2014.
- "Eric Djemba-Djemba hopes St Miren move can force a World cup place". STV Sport. 6 February 2014. Retrieved 6 February 2014.
- (Danish) OB profile
- (Danish) Career statistics at danskfodbold.com
- Eric Djemba-Djemba career stats at Soccerbase