Zanetti in 2011
|Full name||Javier Adelmar Zanetti|
|Date of birth||10 August 1973|
|Place of birth||Buenos Aires, Argentina|
|Height||1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)|
|Playing position||Full Back / Defensive Midfielder|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 18.55, 29 April 2013.
† Appearances (Goals).
Javier Adelmar Zanetti (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈχaβ̞je̞ɾ saˈne̞ti]; born 10 August 1973 in Dock Sud, Buenos Aires Province) is an Argentine footballer who plays for Serie A club Inter Milan. Javier Zanetti has played for Inter since 1995, taking the captain's armband from 29 August 1999. Known for his versatility, he is adept on both the left and right wing, having played on both flanks as a fullback as well as a winger. He slots into several midfield positions with ease, particularly as a defensive or central midfielder. Internationally, he holds the record of the most capped player in the history of the Argentine national team and has played in the 1996 Olympic tournament and in two World Cups, in 1998 and 2002.
Known as "Pupi" in Argentina, Zanetti was born in Buenos Aires, picking up the nickname "El Tractor" (The Tractor) soon after his move to Italy where his strength, resilience, stamina, and his ability to run past opposing defenders when joining the attack from his right back position earned him reverence. More recently, he plays in the right midfield. He ended a 4-year goal drought when he scored on 5 November 2006. In the national team, he is deployed as a right back but is able to switch between defense and attack easily.
Zanetti has won five Serie A titles with Inter, having earned the nickname "Il Capitano" (The Captain) among the fans and media since taking captaincy at Inter. As of the 2011–12 season, he is the only non-Italian player to captain a Serie A team. He holds the record for the highest all-time appearances by a non-Italian born player for an Italian club and his 834 official matches for the club put him first in Inter's all-time appearances list. Zanetti, who plans to retire with Inter and continue to work with the club thereafter, is also noted for his charity work, running a foundation to benefit disadvantaged children in Argentina. He has been named an ambassador for the SOS Children's Villages project in Argentina by FIFA, and in 2005, he received the Ambrogino d'Oro award from the Milan townhall for his social initiative. Zanetti is also a Global Ambassador for Special Olympics.
The 2010 UEFA Champions League Final on 22 May 2010 was Zanetti's 700th game with Inter, and the team's victory on the night ensured that Zanetti marked the occasion by completing a historic treble. He also scored on 20 October 2010 against Tottenham Hotspur to make him the oldest player to score in the UEFA Champions League at the age of 37 years and 71 days. This record has since been surpassed by Filippo Inzaghi and Ryan Giggs.
Early life 
Javier Adelmar Zanetti was born in Buenos Aires to Violeta Bonnazola and grew up in the harbour area in the Dock Sud district. He combined schooling and working commitments, helping his bricklayer father in masonry alongside delivering milk, and working in his cousin's grocery store without neglecting his passion for football. He began playing football on a field in the city suburbs, maintaining the pitch in his spare time.
Club career 
Talleres RE 
Zanetti, after being rejected by the youth division of Argentina's Independiente, signed for Talleres de Remedios de Escalada (a second division team at the time), where he played 33 matches and scored one goal in just one season, but moved in 1993 to the Argentine First Division club Banfield.
A 20-year-old Zanetti debuted for Banfield on 12 September 1993 in a home match against River Plate. He scored his first goal 17 days later against Newell's Old Boys in a match that ended 1–1. His outstanding performances for Banfield gained popularity from El Taladro fans and also earned him a call-up from the national team. First division giants River Plate and Boca Juniors came knocking but Zanetti decided to stay on for another year at the club. In 1995, along with fellow Argentine Sebastián Rambert, he transferred to Italy's Inter Milan, becoming team owner Massimo Moratti's first-ever purchase.
Inter Milan 
Zanetti made his debut for Inter on 27 August 1995 against Vicenza in Milan. Throughout his stay with the club, he has won 16 trophies, 15 of which came under his captaincy : the UEFA Cup in 1998 – scoring the second goal for the final with a shot outside the penalty area – the 2005, 2006, 2010 and 2011 Coppa Italia, the 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2010 Italian Super Cup, the 2005–2006, 2006–2007, 2007–2008, 2008–2009 and 2009–2010 Scudetti and the 2009–10 UEFA Champions League. In 2010, Zanetti became the first player to captain an Italian club to a treble of the Scudetto, Coppa Italia and European Cup.
Zanetti's qualities have earned him respect on and off the field. He is sometimes criticised for being too soft-spoken on the pitch, but he makes up for this by being one of Inter's most consistent, reliable, and trusted players. As such, he was rewarded with the club captaincy, taking over from legendary defender Giuseppe Bergomi. Being a part of the squad for the last 13 seasons and with over 700 appearances, he is currently the team's longest-tenured player, and the first overall surpassing Bergomi (758) in the all-time list of most capped Inter players. To Inter fans, Zanetti is one of the greatest players to have ever worn the colours of the black and blue and he is a legend of Inter and considered their inspiration. He celebrated his 600th cap for Inter in style with a 1–0 win over newly promoted Lecce. Minutes before the match, he was presented with a commemorative plate by vice-captain Iván Córdoba to mark the special occasion.
After the arrival of Maicon at the beginning of the 2006–07 season, Zanetti was moved from the right back position into midfield. He ended a four-year goal drought when he scored on 5 November 2006 at a home match against Ascoli, having previously scored on 6 November 2002 at an away match against Empoli. On 27 September 2006, against Bayern Munich, Zanetti played his 500th professional match for Inter and on 22 November 2006, he appeared in his 100th UEFA match against Sporting Clube de Portugal. Zanetti went on an incredible twelve years without being sent off in a match. The first time he was sent off in his career was on 17 February 1999 in a Coppa Italia match against Parma, but he broke his streak when he was sent off in a Serie A match against Udinese on 3 December 2011. These are the only two times he has been sent off during his entire career at Inter.
At Inter, Zanetti has had 19 different coaches (list), making him the only player to have played under this many coaches. His current contract with Inter Milan runs until 2013 after he extended his contract at the summer of 2010. The captain has pledged his future to the Nerazzurri, hoping to have a future behind the desk at the club once he retires from playing. "Inter means a lot to me," Zanetti said.
It was the first team to open the doors of European football. I was very young when I came here and I think not many teams could have had so much faith and patience with a boy in his early 20s from the very first day like Inter did with me. I will always be grateful for that. For some reason I have always felt at home here at Inter and this is why I have never thought of leaving.
Though Zanetti is more often classified as a defender, he played mostly in midfield during the first half of the 2008–09 season. For the last several weeks of October 2008, with Portuguese coach José Mourinho facing a midfield crisis due to injuries to key midfielders Esteban Cambiasso and Sulley Muntari, he was moved again to the midfield for the matches against Genoa and Fiorentina. During that period, Mourinho played him in the midfield due to the preference of Maicon, Lúcio, Walter Samuel, and Cristian Chivu in the back four.
The 2009–10 season began well for Zanetti and Inter, especially after a 4–0 thrashing of crosstown rivals Milan in the Derby della Madonnina. In the match against Genoa on 17 October, he started off the counterattack that led to Inter's second goal after dispossessing a Genoa player. Inter became the first team of the season to win by a five-goal margin. On 24 October, he reached Giacinto Facchetti's record of 476 Serie A appearances when he turned out for the match against Catania, which ended in a 2–1 win for the Nerazzurri. He also currently holds a club record of 149 consecutive appearances.
On 20 October 2010, at 37 years and 71 days, Zanetti became the oldest player to score in the Champions League when he netted in the opening minute of Inter's 4–3 group stage win over Tottenham Hotspur at the San Siro. This was only his second ever Champions League goal; his first came in December 1998 in a match in a 2–0 win against Sturm Graz.
On 19 January 2011, Zanetti overtook Inter legend Giuseppe Bergomi in Serie A appearances, his 520th match in Serie A, all for Inter. On 11 May 2011, Zanetti made his 1000th appearance as a professional footballer playing for Inter against Roma in the second leg of the Coppa Italia semi-final. On 20 September 2011, Javier Zanetti made the all-time appearance record in a Serie A clash against Novara. The Argentine defender replaced Giuseppe Bergomi in the Inter record books upon his appearance against Novara.
International career 
Zanetti debuted for Argentina on 16 November 1994 against Chile under coach Daniel Passarella. He has since represented his country at the 1998 and 2002 FIFA World Cups. He was also part of the team that won the silver medal at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, USA.
In the 1998 World Cup run, he neatly finished off a Juan Sebastián Verón free kick in the round of 16 match against England making the score 2–2. Argentina went on to win 4–3 on penalties but lost the quarter-final match to the Netherlands.
After having been part of the team during the qualification rounds, Zanetti was not called up for the 2006 FIFA World Cup by coach José Pekerman in a controversial decision. Instead, Lionel Scaloni was given a surprise selection, a move that bewildered many fans and media.
With new coach Alfio Basile, Zanetti was called for a friendly match against France on 7 February 2007. He played brilliantly and helped Javier Saviola to score the only goal of the game that gave Argentina the first victory under Basile's second management. That same year, Zanetti was vice-captain of the Argentine Squad for the Copa América 2007, having previously appeared in the 1995, 1999 and the 2004 editions of the tournament.
In April 2007, Zanetti was presented with the National Giuseppe Prisco Award. After the retirement of Roberto Ayala, Zanetti was given the captain's armband. In a World Cup qualification match against Bolivia on 17 November 2007, he became the most capped player ever for Argentina.
Zanetti remained a regular under new coach Diego Maradona, although defensive midfielder Javier Mascherano took over as captain at Maradona's request. Despite winning the Champions League at club level, Zanetti and his Inter team-mate Esteban Cambiasso were not included in the Argentina squad for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. This move was heavily criticised by football pundits from both South America and Europe. Instead 30-year old Ariel Garcé, who had been called up just twice in the previous five years, received a shocking selection, but ultimately did not play a single minute in any World Cup match. Zanetti's place in the starting line up was taken by Jonas Gutierrez, who had spent the previous season playing on the wing for Newcastle United in the Championship.
On 20 August 2010 Argentina National Team new coach Sergio Batista recalled Javier Zanetti to the Argentina National Team for a friendly against Spain played on Tuesday 7 September 2010 at the River Plate Monumental Stadium where he and fellow legend Gabriel Batistuta were honored by the Argentine Football Association for their outstanding careers with more than 48000 people giving them a standing ovation. He was called again for the friendly against Japan in Saitama of October 2010 but withdrew at the last minute due to injury.
International goals and caps 
Argentina's goal tally first.
Career statistics 
- As of 29 April 2013.
|Argentina national team|
Competition statistics 
- Serie A: 603 appearances, 12 goals
- Coppa Italia: 70 appearances, 3 goals
- Supercoppa Italiana: 7 appearances
- UEFA Champions League: 105 appearances, 2 goals
- UEFA Cup: 53 appearances, 3 goals
- FIFA Club World Cup: 2 appearances, 1 goal
- FIFA World Cup: 8 appearances, 1 goal
- FIFA Confederations Cup: 8 appearances
- Copa America: 22 appearances
- Inter Milan
- Serie A (5): 2005–06, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2008–09, 2009–10
- Coppa Italia (4): 2004–05, 2005–06, 2009–10, 2010–11
- Supercoppa Italiana (4): 2005, 2006, 2008, 2010
- UEFA Champions League (1): 2009–10
- UEFA Cup (1): 1997–98
- FIFA Club World Cup (1): 2010
- FIFA 100
- Pallone d'Argento: 2002
- FIFA Team of the Year 2009 Nominee (Right-back):
- “Loyalty and Critics”: 2013
Personal life 
On 23 December 1999, Javier Zanetti and Paula De la Fuente were married in Argentina, after seven years of dating. They met when he was nineteen and she was fourteen. They live near Lake Como, and they also own a restaurant called "El Gaucho" in Milano in the Navigli district, a popular and touristic area. Today, Paula Zanetti, daughter of a university teacher, works as a photographer. On 11 June 2005, she gave birth to a baby girl, Sol Zanetti. Javier Zanetti said, "I'm very happy about this baby girl who has come into my life. It was a beautiful experience with my wife. My daughter will have all the happiness she deserves." Zanetti also has two sons Ignacio who was born in 2008 and Tomas who was born on 9 May 2012.
Zanetti, a devout Catholic, is a close friend of Dutch footballer Wesley Sneijder, whom he inspired to convert to Catholicism. Upon the 2013 election of the Archbishop of Buenos Aires as Pope Francis, Zanetti's ecstasy at the outcome was translated.
|“||I must admit that [what] I feel at this moment is especially a thrill for all of us Argentines. [I] do not know him personally, but it is a Pope who has lived in Buenos Aires, very humble and always always close to our people. Faith is so important in the world and us we are all close. I had the good fortune to meet Pope Ratzinger and now I expect to have the 'opportunity to meet the new national pope, it would be a great thrill for me and my whole family. [I] wish him all the best and again, for all of us as people of Argentina [it] is a great feeling.||”|
Zanetti's elder brother Sergio is a former football defender.
Charity work 
Fundación PUPI 
Zanetti has also shown social conscience when in response to Argentina's economic crisis of 2001, which threw millions of people into poverty, Zanetti, with his wife Paula, created the Fundación PUPI in Argentina for the social integration of poor children. The aim of the organization is to help children who were left impoverished by the country's economic crisis by giving them educational opportunities, as well as taking care of their nutritional requirements.
"When I look back to my childhood, many concrete scenes come to my mind, good ones and bad ones. I had a difficult childhood, and even though I don't live in my country at present, I'm well aware of what's going on there and the devastating effect it's having on our poorest children. I've always believed that our public actions need to take account of our social responsibility,"
Leoni di Potrero 
Zanetti, along with his compatriot and current teammate at Inter Esteban Cambiasso, founded this charity association to help coach young children with social isolation problems and motor coordination difficulties. Zanetti said that "this spirit lies at the base of all of Inter's initiatives for youngsters:"
"There must always be values at the heart of sport, and this is what we have to teach children."
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- "tactical Formations". Football-Lineups.com. Retrieved 25 January 2007.
- "Match Formations". Football-Lineups.com. Retrieved 17 January 2007.
- Inter and Zanetti: 600 times together
- "Zanetti completes 500 matches with Inter".
- "tactical Formations". Football-Lineups.com. Retrieved 17 January 2007.
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- Stanković stunner as Inter cruise
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- "Saviola sinks Les Bleus in Paris" – Yahoo sports.
- "Premio Prisco: i vincitori della V edizione" (Italian)
- "No stopping record-breaker Zanetti" – UEFA.
- Mascherano accepts captaincy offer – FIFA
- Ariel Garce matches
- Argentina: Batistuta and Zanetti, winning at home for their respective records | Soccer News -Soccer Team – Soccer player | Football News @ Goaledor.Com
- Pupi no, ¿y Milito?
- :: National Football Teams ::.. Player – Javier Zanetti
- Javier Adelmar Zanetti – International Appearances
- Legaseriea.it – Javier Zanetti's Serie A statistics
- "Pelé names his top 100 players". Skysports.com. 4 March 2004. Retrieved 2007-07-11.
- http://www1.en.uefa.com/fanzone/teamoftheyear/index.html FIFA team of the Year 2009
- Dutch soccer player who scored winning goal against Brazil is Catholic convert :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)
- "Inter happy Pope prays with Francesco". www.inter.it. 13 March 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
- "Watch Javier Zanetti singing on Indonesian Idol". inside World Soccer. 27 May 2012.
- "J.ZANETTI NEW FIFA AMBASSADOR FOR SOS". Inter.it. 4 May 2006. Retrieved 2007-06-07.
- "Zapatista rebels woo Inter Milan". BBC News. 11 May 2005. Retrieved 6 May 2010.
- Fundación PUPI
- "Cambiasso, Zanetti: "Only Inter counts"". Inter.it. 14 September 2007. Retrieved 2007-10-10.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Javier Zanetti|
- Javier Zanetti official Website
- Profile at FutbolPunto with maps and graphs
- Javier Zanetti profile al bdfa.com.ar
- Javier Zanetti profile, detailed club and national team statistics, honours (palmares) and timeline
- Player profile at Inter Milan's official website – inter.it
- Javier Zanetti's international profile – AFA
- Official site of the PUPI Foundation – FundacionPUPI.org, founded by Javier and Paula Zanetti
- (Spanish) Banfield Interview
|Inter Milan captain