Hamšík playing for Napoli in 2009
|Full name||Marek Hamšík|
|Date of birth||27 July 1987|
|Place of birth||Banská Bystrica, Czechoslovakia|
|Height||1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)|
|Playing position||Attacking midfielder|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 6 October 2013.
† Appearances (Goals).
Marek Hamšík (Slovak pronunciation: [ˈmarɛk ˑɦamʃiːk]; born 27 July 1987) is a Slovak footballer who plays as a midfielder for Serie A club Napoli and the Slovakia national team. He captained Slovakia at the 2010 FIFA World Cup, its first ever major tournament as an independent nation.
Despite the fact that Hamšík grew up in Banská Bystrica, he never played for major local team Dukla Banská Bystrica. Instead he began playing for a small youth team Jupie Podlavice. In 2002, he signed with a major Slovak team Slovan Bratislava. He played once for the Slovan A-team and scored a goal.
He moved from Slovan to Brescia in 2004 as a 17-year old young talent at a transfer fee of €500,000. His first match in Serie A with Brescia was against Chievo Verona on 20 March 2005 when he was 17 years and 237 days old. Later in that season, Brescia finished 19th in the Serie A league and were relegated to the Serie B. In 2005–06, he played 24 league matches for Brescia in Serie B, with Brescia finishing tenth. He had an impressive 2006–07 season, scoring 10 goals in 40 matches.
On 28 June 2007 newly promoted Serie A club Napoli announced that Hamšík had signed a five-year contract with them. The transfer cost Napoli €5.5 million. The president of the club Aurelio De Laurentiis described him as a player who should be closely watched in the future.
He played his first major match with Napoli against Cesena in the first round of the Italian Cup. Napoli won 4–0, Hamšík made the opening goal and scored the second himself. He scored his first goal in the Serie A on 16 September 2007 in the match against Sampdoria.
His football icon is Czech midfielder Pavel Nedvěd. In 2007 he was voted the second best Slovak footballer of the year (after Martin Škrtel) and also he was voted the best young Slovak footballer (The Peter Dubovský Trophy). Hamšík ended his first season with Napoli as the club's top scorer, with nine goals from 37 games. At the start of the 2008–09 season, Hamšík scored in both of Napoli's first two games and went on to score a further 9 goals in his second season with the club, finishing as Napoli's top scorer for the second year running. In 2009 he was again runner-up as best Slovak footballer of the year and repeated his success as the best young Slovak footballer.
On 19 September 2010, Hamšík scored Napoli's first goal as they came back from a goal down to defeat Sampdoria 2–1 in Genoa. Following this on 23 September, Hamšík signed a three-year contract extension on his contract that ties him with the club until June 2015. Three days later Hamšík scored his second goal of the new season with an 81st minute penalty to earn Napoli a 4–1 comeback win away to newly promoted Cesena. On 30 January 2011, Hamšík scored a well taken effort as Napoli hammered Sampdoria 4–0.
The 2010–11 season was very productive for Hamšík as he helped lead Napoli to a very successful season and earn automatic qualification into the Champions League by finishing third in Serie A. Hamšík played in 36 of the 38 Serie A games that season, netting 11 goals and contributing with a further six assists.
Hamšík scored the winning goal in their 2–0 home victory over Villarreal on 27 September, earning Napoli their first ever victory in the UEFA Champions League. On 29 November Napoli welcomed league leaders Juventus to the Stadio San Paolo, Hamšík missed a 15th minute penalty before heading in a goal to give the hosts the lead seven minutes later. The match was enthralling and ended in a 3–3 draw, after Napoli conceded two late goals to preserve Juventus' unbeaten start to the season.
Hamšík provided an assist for Gökhan Inler's opening goal against Villarreal on 7 December and then scored the decisive goal, helping Napoli to a 2–0 victory in Spain. The win secured qualification to the Round of 16 in a very difficult group, that also included Bayern Munich and Manchester City. Hamšík helped Napoli finish the first half of the 2011–12 campaign on a high, netting a superb goal in their 6–1 hammering of Genoa on 21 December. Hamšík also provided assists for strikes by Goran Pandev and Walter Gargano during the game. Through the first half of the 2011–12 campaign, Hamšík had appeared in 16 Serie A games, contributing with both five goals and five assists. In their European campaign, Hamšík appeared in all six group stage matches and contributed with two goals and an assist.
On 9 March, Hamšík signed a one-year contract extension with Napoli, keeping him at the Italian club until June 2016. The announcement was made following Hamšík netting an incredible angled shot against Cagliari Calcio earlier that day, as Napoli ran out 6–3 winners. Hamšík's final goal of the season came in a 2–0 victory Palermo on 1 May, as he doubled their lead in the 35th minute following a penalty from Cavani. Napoli finished the season in fifth place in Serie A and the Slovakian forward contributed with nine league goals and nine assists.
Hamšík was also very influential as Napoli reached the Coppa Italia final against Scudetto winners Juventus on 20 May. After being slipped in by Goran Pandev, Hamšík was one on one with Marco Storari and made no mistake as he touched it past the onrushing Juventus goalkeeper, securing a 2–0 win that delivered The Partenopei their first trophy in over twenty years. Following the triumph, Hamšík shaved his famous Mohawk hair as he had pledged to chop off his "crest" if Napoli won the trophy.
In Napoli's first league fixture of the 2012–13 Serie A season, Hamšík scored the club's first goal and assisted Christian Maggio's strike in an eventual 3–0 defeat of Palermo. Missing leading goal-scorer Edinson Cavani for the club's match against Chievo Verona on 28 October 2012, Hamšík connected on a Juan Camilo Zúñiga cross, giving Napoli a well-earned 1–0 victory. On the penultimate matchday of the Serie A season, Hamšík collected a pass from Goran Pandev and nudged the ball home in the 93rd minute, rescuing a 2–1 win over A.C. Siena, confirming the club's place in the group stages of the Champions League while condemning Siena to relegation. The Slovakian featured in every Serie A game for Napoli during the 2012–13 season, providing 11 goals and 14 assists as the Partenopei finished second behind reigning champions Juventus, a season which proved to be manager Walter Mazzarri's last at the club as he became coach of Inter later that summer.
On 10 August 2013, Hamšík signed a contract extension with Napoli, tying him to the club until the summer of 2018. In the first game of the new Serie A season on 26 August 2013, the Slovakian netted Napoli's second and third goals in the club's 3-0 home defeat of Bologna. Hamšík continued his scoring form in Napoli's following game, netting another brace in their 4-2 away victory over Chievo Verona on 31 August. After the game, Napoli coach Rafael Benítez drew comparisons between the Slovakian midfielder and Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard, who he worked with during his time in charge of the Merseyside club.
Hamšík represented Slovakia at junior level, playing in the UEFA Under-17 European Championships qualifiers and the UEFA Under-19 European Championships. He played also for the Slovak U-21 national team.
He is a regular member of the Slovak national team. He made his debut on 7 February 2007 in the friendly match against Poland which ended 2–2. He played his second match against Germany in the Euro 2008 qualification, which Slovakia lost 2–1. He became the key member of the attack for the national team, usually playing as a left or central attacking midfielder. Hamšík captained his country in their first World Cup experience in South Africa in 2010, where the team made it to the first knockout stage after defeating then world champions Italy 3-2. Slovakia was defeated by later finalist Netherlands in the first knockout stage.
- Correct as of 19 October 2013
1 Includes Supercoppa Italiana.
|Slovakia national team|
- Peter Dubovský Trophy (U21): 2007, 2008
- Serie A Young Footballer of the Year: 2008
- Slovak Footballer of the Year: 2009, 2010
In December 2008, Hamsik was the victim of an armed robbery while he was driving his Mini to go Christmas shopping. On 22 November 2011, Hamšík's pregnant wife, Martina Franova, was stopped while driving her BMW by armed men. Franova was forced out of the car and police later found it in Ceselle, near Naples and returned the car to Hamšík. Following Napoli's 0–0 draw with Sampdoria on 17 February 2013, Hamšík was stopped by three masked individuals on a scooter as he was driving on the Via Cinthia heading for the Naples International Airport. One of the individuals smashed one of his car windows and then pointed a gun at him, demanding the Slovakian hand over his Rolex Daytona, worth upwards of €10,000; Hamšík obliged and called the police after the three individuals fled.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Marek Hamšík.|
- Player profile on Napoli's official website