Lorik Cana

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Lorik Cana
Lorik cana.jpg
Personal information
Full name Lorik Agim Cana
Date of birth (1983-07-27) 27 July 1983 (age 31)
Place of birth Gjakova, Republic of Kosovo
Height 1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)
Playing position Defender, Defensive midfielder,
Central midfielder
Club information
Current team
Number 27
Youth career
1997–2000 Dardania Lausanne
2000–2001 Paris Saint-Germain
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2000–2003 Paris Saint-Germain B 39 (2)
2002–2005 Paris Saint-Germain 69 (2)
2005–2009 Marseille 122 (6)
2009–2010 Sunderland 31 (0)
2010–2011 Galatasaray 24 (1)
2011– Lazio 82 (4)
National team
2003– Albania 82[1] (1)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 18 April 2015.

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 29 March 2015

Lorik Cana (Albanian pronunciation: [ˈlɔɾik ˈtsana]) (born 27 July 1983) is an Albanian professional footballer who plays as a defender for Italian club Lazio and captains the Albania national football team. He used to primarily play as a defensive midfielder.

Club career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Cana's father's experience in football inspired him to take up the sport. In 1997, he joined the local team Dardania Lausanne, an amateur football club founded by the Albanian community in Lausanne, coached by his father.[2] He played at Dardania until the year 2000, when he was spotted and signed by the French club, Paris Saint-Germain.

Paris Saint-Germain[edit]

He was invited to Arsenal at the age of 16 for trial, but failed to attend because he was denied a British visa.[3] At Paris Saint-Germain he spent three years working through the ranks of the French club. Cana finally made the first team in 2003 and quickly became a main player. During the 2003–04 season, he played 32 games and scored one goal, as the team won the Coupe de France and finished second in the French Ligue 1, proving to be one of the most successful seasons of his career so far. This was repeated the next season when he also played 32 games for the Paris team and scored one goal. In his senior debut for Paris Saint-Germain, he was awarded man of the match.[citation needed]


Cana playing for Marseille in 2008.

However, at the beginning of the 2005–06 season, there was a change of coach at Paris Saint-Germain and Cana fell out of favour. This prompted him to move to the south of France to join the most successful club in French history, Marseille. Since joining Marseille, he cemented his place in the starting eleven, and scored the winning goal in the first match between his new club (Olympique de Marseille) and his former club (Paris Saint-Germain). He also became team captain after the departure of the former captain Habib Beye to Newcastle United during the summer of 2007. Cana left the club for Premier League side Sunderland in August 2009. By playing for Marseille, he had achieved his childhood dream. However, during his four years in Southern France, he failed to win a single trophy. The season following his departure, l'OM became French Ligue 1 champions and won the Coupe de la Ligue.


Cana joined Sunderland on a four-year contract for a fee of around £5 million on 24 July 2009.[4] He was soon handed the team's captaincy by manager Steve Bruce,[5] although Bruce later stated a captain had yet to be appointed.[6] On 15 August, Cana made his league debut for Sunderland and contributed with an impressive performance in a 1–0 win over Bolton Wanderers, becoming the first Albanian player to play in the Premier League.[7] He was appointed as Sunderland's captain for the 2009–10 season on 3 September.[8]


Cana joined Galatasaray on 8 July 2010, for a fee of €4.5 million.[9] He signed a 4-year contract worth €2 million per season, plus bonuses based on appearances. His stay at the club was hampered by a back injury during mid-season. Because they were going through a crisis throughout the whole season, Cana failed to make much of an impact, though he was still a favourite of the supporters because of his resilience on the pitch.


On 3 July 2011, Cana signed for Italian Serie A club Lazio, becoming the club's fifth signing of the summer, following the arrivals of Miroslav Klose, Djibril Cissé, Senad Lulić and Abdoulay Konko. He was purchased as an exchange for 50% registration rights of goalkeeper Fernando Muslera going to Galatasaray, which Lazio both tagged them for a peppercorn fee in the financial accounts. Galatasaray paid an additional €6.75 million to Montevideo Wanderers to acquire another 50% registration rights of Muslera, made 50% rights of Muslera that Lazio sold and the full rights of Cana that Lazio acquired also worth around €6.75 million at that time.

Cana made his first debut for Lazio on 21 September 2011 in the 1–2 away victory over Cesena by coming on as a substitute in the 87th minute in place of Cristian Brocchi.[10] He scored his first goal for Lazio on 10 December 2011 against Lecce in a 3–2 win after coming on as a substitute for Giuseppe Biava in the start of the second-half.[11] After sustaining many niggling injuries throughout the season, on 31 January 2012, Lazio confirmed that Cana would miss 6 weeks due to a back injury sustained in training.[12] After returning from injury Cana started to quickly recover his form. With Lazio's players constantly being haunted with injuries and suspensions Cana took his chance in the midfield. This resulted in his best performance in the 2011-12 season where he scored a 25-yard goal on 6 May 2012 against Atalanta, thus keeping Lazio's Champions League hopes alive.[13] He finished his first season at Lazio with 15 Serie A appearances and Lazio finished in the 4th place.

2012–13 season[edit]

Cana began another season at Lazio with the opening match of the 2012–13 Serie A against Atalanta on 26 August 2012, finished in the 0–1 victory, in which Cana came in as a substitute in the 84th minute for Álvaro Rafael González.[14] He played his first match of the season as a starter on 31 October 2012 against Torino, match finished in the 1–1 draw and Cana played the full 90-minutes match.[15] On 23 February 2013 Cana was included in the UEFA best eleven of the week for 2012–13 UEFA Europa League 1/16 as he was rated as one of Center-back which had an good performance, where he played a good match in the 2–0 victory against Borussia Mönchengladbach.[16] Then during the entire second half of that season, he played all matches as a starter. He finished the 2012–13 season with total of 24 league appearances, managed to play in 5 Coppa Italia matches and also 9 matches in the 2012–13 UEFA Europa League.

2013–14 season[edit]

In the 2013–14 Serie A season, on 24 November 2013 Cana scored his first season goal, which saved the team from losing the match against Sampdoria. Cana scored in the 90+4' minute an equalising goal for the 1–1 result.[17] He scored his second goal on 2 March 2014 against Fiorentina in the 5th minute of the match, which finished with a 0–1 Lazio victory.[18] With a spectacular bicycle kick, he scored the only goal in a crucial match and to give Lazio the three points, right after elimination from the 2013–14 UEFA Europa League. The hero of the match unquestionably Cana, not only scored but also defended his score by making truly spectacular intervention in defense. Also with this win, Lazio managed to get back in the fight for a place in the UEFA Europa League.[19]

Cana finished the 2013–14 season with 26 appearances in Serie A, 1 in Coppa Italia and also 6 2013–14 UEFA Europa League matches all as a starter and full 90-minutes. Cana was also included in the best Seria A defenders of 2013-14 season and was ranked as the 4th best defender with 344 balls won in 16 matches, beating Emerson Ramos Borges (5th place), Mehdi Benatia (6th place), Cristián Zapata (7th place), Federico Ceccherini (8th place), Stefan Savic (9th place) and Shkodran Mustafi (10th place).[20]

2014–15 season[edit]

On 23 August 2014, a few days before the start of the Serie A new season, some media analysists warned about a strong rivalry between Cana and two Lazio's new Summer signs Stefan de Vrij and Santiago Gentiletti for two starting places in the center-defence and about a possibility for Cana to become a third choice in the center-defense of the Biancocelesti.[21] In the opening match of the 2014–15 Serie A on 31 August 2014 Cana played the full 90-minutes match leaving Santiago Gentiletti on the bench and playing among Stefan de Vrij in a 3–1 loss against Milan.[22][23] In the next fixture on 14 September 2014 Cana was an unused substitute for the entire match against Cesena (3–0) behind two new Summer signs Stefan de Vrij and Santiago Gentiletti, who played the entire 90-minutes.[24] In the 3rd match week on 21 September, Cana came in as a substitute in the 69th minute, in place of Santiago Gentiletti, who left the pitch due to an injury and also a minute after other mentioned defender Stefan de Vrij received his second yellow card and was sent off after completing a red card, then Lazio with 10 mens lost the match with the 1–0 result.[25] It favorised Cana to play as a starter in the upcoming match of 4th match week on 26 September against Udinese, after both other center-defenders were absent, whereas Santiago Gentiletti was rumored to be awaited by several weeks of absence until his complete recovery from the injury.[26] Against Udinese, Cana played as a starter among other center-defender Diego Novaretti for the entire 90-minutes match, finished in the 0–1 loss.[27] After an excellent performance in the 3–0 victory against Atalanta on 16 December 2014, Cana got included in the best eleven of the Serie A week, among team-mates Senad Lulić and Felipe Anderson.[28]

International career[edit]

Cana was eligible to play for either Albania, Switzerland or France, as he held all three passports.[29] Cana chose Albania in early 2003, after receiving a call-up from the Albanian Football Association among with the coach Hans-Peter Briegel.

After accepting the invitation he made his international debut for Albania on 11 June 2003 at the age of just 19, against Switzerland on a match for UEFA Euro 2004 qualifying Group 10 by coming on as a substitute in the second-half for Geri Çipi, where the match finished in the 3–2 loss.[30]

2006 FIFA World Cup qualification[edit]

Euro 2008 qualifiers[edit]

On 12 September 2007, he was sent off by referee Mike Riley in the 87th minute of Albania's home game against the Netherlands, after an altercation with Wesley Sneijder and Ruud van Nistelrooy.

2010 FIFA World Cup qualification[edit]

Euro 2012 qualifiers[edit]

He was given the captain's armband for the first time in a friendly match on 25 May 2010 against Montenegro, which finished in a 1–0 victory.[31] He captained for the first time in an official match on 8 October 2010 in the match for UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying against Bosnia and Herzegovina which finished in a 1–1 draw.[32] Then he captained another two matches both against the country where he played for many years, France on 2 September and 7 October 2011.[33][34] After the end of the Euro 2012 qualification campaign in October 2011, Altin Lala and Ervin Skela retired from international football and Cana became a regular captain of Albania national football team.[35]

2014 FIFA World Cup qualification[edit]

In the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification Cana played every minute in 9 out 10 matches valid for the Group E, missing out just the match against Norway on 7 June 2013 due to an suspend for completing number of cards.[36] Albania were eliminated from the competition as they ranked in the 5th out of 6 places and by collecting 3 wins 2 draws and 5 losses.[37]

Cana was included in the best eleven of the players which missed out at the 2014 FIFA World Cup because of failing to qualify with their national team.[38]

Euro 2016 qualifiers[edit]

He started the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying campaign by playing the full 90-minutes in the historical 0–1 away victory against Portugal.[39]

In the Serbia v Albania match, valid for the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying Group I, and played on 14 October 2014, Cana wrestled a Serbian fan to the ground.[40] The fan, who had previously hit Bekim Balaj with a chair, bit Cana's finger and tried to cut it with his teeth. Cana reported that he got injured by it.[41] After the match Cana, along with Taulant Xhaka were declared citizens of honor from the mayor of the city of Mitrovica, Kosovo, for the bravery shown in protecting national symbols.[42] Cana received a similar award by the city of Bajram Curri, in Northern Albania.[43]

Personal life[edit]

Lorik is the son of retired footballer Agim Cana.[44] His father's career brought the family to Kosovo, but because of war in the region, Lorik and his family were forced to flee to Lausanne, where they stayed for nine years.[7] He is a UNO-ambassador against poverty.[44][45] He's also known for his temper character. In an interview, Cana stated that archeology is one of his biggest interests and that he plans to work in the Albanology field after his footballing career, after pursuing a university degree in History.[44] He married Italian model Monica Ercoli on 8 June 2014 and the ceremony took place on 27 June 2014.[46][47]

Career statistics[edit]


As of 18 April 2015 [48][49][50][51]
Season Club League country League League Cup Europe Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
2000–01 Paris Saint-Germain B Championnat de France amateur 4 0 - - - - 4 0
2001–02 12 1 - - - - 12 1
2002–03 23 1 - - - - 23 1
Total 39 2 0 0 0 0 39 2
Paris Saint-Germain Ligue 1 3 0 - - - - 3 0
2003–04 32 1 - - - - 32 1
2004–05 32 1 - - 6 0 38 1
2005–06 2 0 - - - - 2 0
Total 69 2 0 0 6 0 75 2
Marseille Ligue 1 28 3 - - 8 0 36 3
2006–07 33 2 1 0 3 0 37 2
2007–08 34 2 2 0 9 0 45 2
2008–09 27 1 - - 12 1 39 2
Total 122 8 3 0 32 1 157 9
2009–10 Sunderland Premier League 31 0 4 0 - - 35 0
Total 31 0 4 0 0 0 35 0
2010–11 Galatasaray Süper Lig 24 1 4 0 3 0 31 1
Total 24 1 4 0 3 0 31 1
2011–12 Lazio Serie A 15 2 0 0 6 0 21 2
2012–13 24 0 5 0 9 0 38 0
2013–14 26 2 0 0 6 0 32 2
2014–15 17 0 3 0 - - 20 0
Total 82 4 8 0 21 0 111 4
Career total 367 17 19 0 62 1 448 18


As of 29 March 2015
Albania national team[48][52]
Year Apps Goals
2002 1 0
2003 6 0
2004 5 0
2005 8 1
2006 4 0
2007 6 0
2008 6 0
2009 6 0
2010 6 0
2011 9 0
2012 8 0
2013 9 0
2014 7 0
2015 1 0
Total 82 1

International goals[edit]

Scores and results list Albania's goal tally first.
# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1. 17 August 2005 Qemal Stafa Stadium, Tirana, Albania  Azerbaijan 2–1 2–1 Friendly



Paris Saint-Germain[51]


  • Albanian Footballer of the Year (3): 2004, 2005, 2006
  • Albanian Fan's Footballer of the Year (1): 2009


  1. ^ (83 – Cana has played in a UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying match against Serbia on 14 October 2014 in Belgrade, a match which was abandoned in the 42nd minute due to incidents that happened during the match. Serbia was awarded 3–0 victory but deducted 3 points.)
  2. ^ "Agim Cana Entraîneur du Dardania Lausanne". 24heures.ch (in French). 19 August 1997. Retrieved 24 March 2010. 
  3. ^ "Cana: Arsenali më ka kërkuar si 16-vjeçar" (in Albanian). Pristina, Kosovo: Telegrafi.com. 18 February 2010. Retrieved 14 July 2010. Jam ftuar nga Arsenali për prova kur kam pasur 16 vjet, por nuk mund të vija për shkak të problemeve me vizën. 
  4. ^ "Sunderland sign Marseille captain". BBC Sport. 24 July 2009. Retrieved 26 July 2009. 
  5. ^ "Catt fight is not over yet". Sunderland Echo. 25 July 2009. Retrieved 26 July 2009. 
  6. ^ Fraser, Paul (15 August 2009). "Skipper’s crown is awaiting Dunne". The Northern Echo. Retrieved 19 August 2009. 
  7. ^ a b "Alas, poor Lorik — Cana has gone from Kosovo refugee to a Sunderland hero". Daily Mail (London). 
  8. ^ "Exclusive: Cana for captain". Sunderland AFC. 2 September 2009. Retrieved 3 September 2009. 
  9. ^ "Profesyonel oyuncu Lorik Cana'nın Sunderland FC Kulübünden 4.500.000 avro bedelle transferi.". Turkish Public Disclosure System (in Turkish). 8 July 2010. Retrieved 24 July 2011. 
  10. ^ Cesena vs. Lazio - 21 September 2011 - Soccerway
  11. ^ Serie A Lecce vs. Lazio Team line-ups Goal.com
  12. ^ Serie A Lazio vs Milan Match preview Goal.com
  13. ^ Atalanta vs. Lazio - 6 May 2012 - Soccerway
  14. ^ Atalanta vs. Lazio - 26 August 2012 - Soccerway
  15. ^ Lazio vs. Torino - 31 October 2012 - Soccerway
  16. ^ Cana në formacionin më të mirë të UEFA-s për Europa Ligën - Sporti Shqiptar Online Sporti Shqiptar
  17. ^ Cana shënon dhe shpëton Lacion (video) aSport.info
  18. ^ Fiorentina vs. Lazio - 2 March 2014 - Soccerway
  19. ^ Cana kopjon Salihin, shënon me roveshatë - Sporti Shqiptar Online - Sporti Shqiptar
  20. ^ Lorik Cana në “Top-5″ e mbrojtësve më të mirë në Serie A Lajme Online
  21. ^ Lorik Cana, drejt pankinës te Lacio Panorama Sport
  22. ^ Milan vs. Lazio - 31 August 2014 - Soccerway
  23. ^ Etrit Berisha dhe Cana, titullarë ndaj Milanit Panorama Sport
  24. ^ Lazio vs. Cesena - 14 September 2014 - Soccerway
  25. ^ Genoa vs. Lazio - 21 September 2014 - Soccerway
  26. ^ Lorik Cana, titullar ndaj Udinezes Panorama Sport
  27. ^ Lazio vs. Udinese - 25 September 2014 - Soccerway
  28. ^ Serie A, Cana në formacionin e javës Shqiperia.ch
  29. ^ Cana: Do të shënojmë dhe fitojmë ndaj Bjellorusisë! Yll Press > Sport: Kombëtaret - "3 pasaporta zotëronte Cana para se të zgjidhte Shqipërinë. Ai kishte në dorë të luante me Zvicrën ose Francën, por zgjodhi të përfaqësonte kombin e tij"
  30. ^ Switzerland football team defeated Albania 3:2, 11 June 2003 EU-football.info
  31. ^ Montenegro football team lost to Albania 0:1, 25 May 2010 EU-football.info
  32. ^ Albania and Bosnia & Herzegovina national football teams played to a 1:1 draw, 8 October 2010 EU-football.info
  33. ^ Albania football team lost to France 1:2, 2 September 2011 EU-football.info
  34. ^ France football team defeated Albania 3:0, 7 October 2011 EU-football.info
  35. ^ Rrëfehet Cana: Karrierën e nisa si sulmues aSport.info "Kujtojmë që Cana e mban shiritin e kapitenit që nga koha kur nga kombëtarja u largua Altin Lala dhe Ervin Skela, pra që nga tetori i vitit 2011."
  36. ^ Cana mbret i minutave ... dhe i kartonëve Sporti Shqiptar
  37. ^ FIFA World Cup - StandingsUEFA.com
  38. ^ Team Focus: Not at the World Cup XI WhoScored.com
  39. ^ Portugal football team lost to Albania 0:1, 7 September 2014 EU-football.info
  40. ^ Whitwell, Lori (16 October 2014). "UEFA open proceedings against Serbia and Albania for their abandoned Euro 2016 qualifier... but Serbian FA say incident was a 'planned terrorist attack' on their country". Dailymail. Retrieved 25 October 2014. 
  41. ^ Lorik Cana: Tifozi serb më kafshoi gishtin indeksonline.net
  42. ^ Bahtiri shpall Xhaken e Canen qytetare nderi te Mitrovices koha.net
  43. ^ Gazeta Tema (23 October 2014). "Folklorizmi shkon deri ne ekstrem". Retrieved 25 October 2014. 
  44. ^ a b c Frashëri, Dash. "Lorik Cana në 360 gradë: 24 orët e kapitenit të Marsejës, nga futbolli te librat" (in Albanian). Retrieved 28 July 2010. 
  45. ^ UNPD Kosovo. "Cana visits UNDP Kosovo". UNPD. Retrieved 28 July 2010. 
  46. ^ Cana martohet buzë detit - Yjet - Gazeta Tribuna
  47. ^ Martohet Lorik Cana - NOA
  48. ^ a b "Cana, Lorik". National Football Teams. Retrieved 26 October 2010. 
  49. ^ "LORİK CANA". Turkish Football Federation. 26 October 2010. Retrieved 26 October 2010. 
  50. ^ "Lorik Cana". Mackolik.com. 26 October 2010. Retrieved 26 October 2010. 
  51. ^ a b c Lorik Cana profile at Soccerway
  52. ^ Lorik Cana - national football team player EU-Football.info

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Habib Beye
Marseille captain
Succeeded by
Mamadou Niang
Preceded by
Dean Whitehead
Sunderland captain
Succeeded by
Lee Cattermole
Preceded by
Altin Lala
Albania captain