Yassine El Ghanassy

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Yassine El Ghanassy
Personal information
Full name Yassine El Ghanassy
Date of birth (1990-07-12) 12 July 1990 (age 24)
Place of birth La Louvière, Belgium
Height 1.73 m (5 ft 8 in)
Playing position Forward
Club information
Current team
Al Ain
Number 8
Youth career
1995–1998 CS Fayt-Manage
1998–2008 La Louvière
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2008 La Louvière 6 (0)
2008– Gent 111 (15)
2012 West Bromwich Albion (loan) 0 (0)
2013 SC Heerenveen (loan) 12 (5)
2014– Al Ain (loan) 8 (1)
National team
2005 Belgium U16 1 (0)
2009 Belgium U19 3 (0)
2010–2011 Belgium U21 7 (1)
2011– Belgium 1 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 30 July 2013 (UTC).

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 19:51, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

Yassine El Ghanassy (born 12 July 1990) is a Belgian-Moroccan footballer who plays as a forward for the UAE League side Al Ain on loan from Gent.

Club career[edit]

Youth career[edit]

Yassine El Ghanassy was born on 12 July 1990 as the only son of the former football player Hajjaj El Ghanassy. He started playing when he was fifteen at the team Fayt-Manage in Hainaut. He was signed by the youth team of La Louvière, where he quickly gained the attention of many sides. At the age of sixteen, he went to the English team Birmingham City FC, impressing on trial, but a transfer didn't follow as La Louvière wanted a transfer price which was too high for such a young player.

La Louvière[edit]

In 2008 El Ghanassy made his debut in the first team of La Louvière. The team had just been relegated to the Third Division and was about to merge with RACS Couillet. El Ghanassy got some playing time, but nevertheless left for AA Gent not long afterwards.

AA Gent[edit]

Although he was initially added to the youth team, he played a number of games in the Jupiler Pro League. Thanks to his creativity and drive he was being named as the successor to Bryan Ruiz, who left in the summer of 2009 for FC Twente. Due to their similarities as players, he has been compared to Ruiz by many pundits.

In his early games for Gent, El Ghanassy became known as a fine passer of the ball, and one who provided many assists from his team-mates, but rarely scored himself. His first goal was scored in the Belgian League playoffs in 2009/10 against Zulte Waregem. Since that goal he has become more prolific. One of his most important contributions in recent years was a goals against the Belarusian team FC Naftan Novopolotsk in the Champions League qualifiers. It was the only goal in that game, which meant that Gent qualified for the third qualifying round.

More recently, El Ghanassy has been followed by several European top teams, with Manchester City F.C., AC Milan, Everton FC, RSC Anderlecht, Sunderland A.F.C. and Olympique Lyonnais[1] being linked with the Belgian. He admitted recently that the attention of Anderlecht flattered him.

On 25 October 2010, it was revealed scouts from Celtic F.C. had watched El Ghanassy in action. His agent described him as a "magician" in an interview with STV, saying he would encourage the player to move to the Glasgow club.[2]

West Bromwich Albion[edit]

On 11 July 2012 West Bromwich Albion confirmed the loan signing of Yassine El Ghanassy from Gent. El Ghanassy signed a season-long deal with an option to make the move permanent in West Bromwich Albion's favour.[3] He scored his first goal for WBA against Yeovil in the League Cup on 28 August 2012.[4]

SC Heerenveen[edit]

On 30 January 2013 SC Heereveen announced that they have loaned Yassine El Ghanassy for the rest of the season.

International career[edit]

Because of the fact that El Ghanassy has double Belgian-Moroccan nationality, he could choose to play for either country, leading to him playing International youth team games for both nations.

El Ghanassy was called up by the national coach Georges Leekens to play in the Belgian national team on 8 October 2010 and to play his first international game. El Ghanassy made his debut for Belgium in a friendly match against Finland, and as a result, would still be eligible to play for Morocco.

Player career[edit]

Season Team Country Division Games Goals
2007/08 RAA Louviéroise Belgium Derde Klasse 6 0
2008/09 AA Gent Belgium Jupiler Pro League 11 0
2009/10 AA Gent Belgium Jupiler Pro League 19 2
2010/11 AA Gent Belgium Jupiler Pro League 36 4
2011/12 AA Gent Belgium Jupiler Pro League 24 4
Belgium 96 10
2012/13 West Brom England Barclays Premier League 0 0
England 0 0
2012/13 SC Heerenveen Holland Eredivise 12 5
Holland 12 5
2013/14 AA Gent Belgium Jupiler Pro League 21 5
Belgium 21 5
2013/14 AL AIN FC UAE Arabian Gulf League - AGL 0 0
UAE

References[edit]

  1. ^ Het Laatste Nieuws, 6 November 2010, El Ghanassy speelt zich in de kijker van AC Milan
  2. ^ Celtic scout Belgian talent El Ghanassy STV Sport, 25 October 2010
  3. ^ Yassine Determined to Shine www.wba.co.uk, 11 July 2012
  4. ^ "Yeovil 2 - 4 WBA". BBC. 28 August 2012. Retrieved 28 August 2012.