Blerim Džemaili

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Blerim Džemaili
Blerim Dzemaili.jpg
Džemaili playing for Switzerland
Personal information
Full name Blerim Džemaili[1]
Date of birth (1986-04-12) 12 April 1986 (age 31)
Place of birth Tetovo, SR Macedonia, SFR Yugoslavia
Height 1.79 m (5 ft 10 12 in)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Montreal Impact (on loan from Bologna)
Number 31
Youth career
1995–1996 Oerlikon Zürich
1996–2000 FC Unterstrass
2000–2001 YF Juventus
2001–2003 Zürich
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2003–2007 Zürich 111 (9)
2007–2009 Bolton Wanderers 0 (0)
2008–2009 Torino (loan) 23 (0)
2009–2010 Torino 7 (0)
2009–2010 Parma (loan) 19 (1)
2010–2011 Parma 30 (1)
2011–2014 Napoli 86 (16)
2014–2016 Galatasaray 11 (0)
2015–2016 Genoa (loan) 27 (3)
2016– Bologna 31 (8)
2017– Montreal Impact (loan) 14 (7)
National team
2004–2008 Switzerland U-21 16 (4)
2006– Switzerland 58 (7)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 3 August 2017.
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 3 September 2017

Blerim Džemaili (Albanian: Blerim Xhemaili [blɛˈɾim dʒɛˈmaili]; born 12 April 1986) is a naturalized Swiss professional footballer who plays for Montreal Impact on loan from Italian club Bologna as a midfielder.

Džemaili made his debut for the Switzerland national team in March 2006 and was selected for their squads at the FIFA World Cup in 2006 and 2014.[2]

Childhood and early career[edit]

Džemaili was born to Fekredin and Shemije Džemaili,[3] an Albanian family from Bogovinje, in Macedonia.[4] At age four, he and his family migrated to Zürich, Switzerland.[4] At age nine, he joined youth club Oerlikon Zürich for one year before moving to FC Unterstrass. At age 14, Blerim moved to third league team YF Juventus as a youth player before moving to FC Zürich in 2001. While with Zürich, Džemaili rose through the ranks and made the senior team at age 17.

Club career[edit]

Zürich[edit]

Džemaili began his senior career with Zürich. In his first season, he made 30 appearances for the club, scoring twice and creating three assists. Džemaili played either as a central or defensive midfielder. In the 2004–05 season, he helped the club win the Swiss Cup. Džemaili imposed a strong influence on the field as he possessed accurate passing capabilities as well as a fast and aggressive approach to the game.[5] This led Džemaili to taking the role of captain during the 2005–06. Džemaili was 19 when he was chosen captain and is one of the youngest captains in Swiss football history. Džemaili led his team to glory as Zürich won the Swiss Super League in the 2005–06 and 2006–07 seasons.

After winning the Swiss cup and league, Džemaili moved to Premier League side Bolton Wanderers.

Bolton Wanderers[edit]

Džemaili signed a preliminary contract agreement with Bolton on 9 February 2007, meaning that he would sign for the Premier League outfit once his contract expired in the summer of 2007.[6]

Former Bolton manager Sam Allardyce was quoted as saying, "Blerim is a fantastic player, who has played for the best team in Switzerland for the past three years. For someone so young, he has a wealth of experience. At the age of 20, he is the skipper of FC Zürich and is expected to become a regular international for Switzerland in the years ahead. He has hardly missed a game for FC Zurich since he started playing for them at the age of 17. I am excited by the prospect of working with Blerim next season."[7] Džemaili, however, sustained a rupturing cruciate knee ligaments and was out for six months.[8] He made his debut as a substitute in the club's FA Cup defeat to Sheffield United in what proved to be his only showing of the 2007–08 campaign. He later insisted that he would not change anything about his time at Bolton following his season-long loan move to Torino.[9]

Torino/Parma[edit]

Džemaili joined Torino on a season-long loan deal, with an option to purchase outright, on 1 September 2008,[10] making his debut with Torino on 24 September 2008, and became a staple fixture in their side for the season. In April 2009, Torino signed him outright from Bolton for €2 million.[11][12] Torino announced that deal after their relegation to Serie B in June.[13][14]

After having played just once for Torino at Coppa Italia,[15] Džemaili completed a loan move to Parma on 31 August 2009, with an option to sign the 50% registration rights of the player at the end of season. In exchange, Daniele Vantaggiato moved to Turin on loan.[16] first and second halves of Džemaili's registration rights were then bought by Parma in the summers of 2010 and 2011[17] for a total fee of €7 million.[18]

Napoli[edit]

On 25 June 2011, Džemaili was signed by Napoli for €9 million[18] with Fabiano Santacroce (loan) and Manuele Blasi (free)[18] going the other way to Parma. Džemaili has been a consistent performer so far for Napoli. Džemaili has been well received by the fans as he has scored twice and assisted once in eleven appearances in the Serie A.[19] His first was a right-footed shot from outside the box to the bottom left corner following a corner in a match against Lecce[20] and his second was struck late to earn an equaliser as Napoli earned a point at Novara.[21] Džemaili has also appeared six times in the UEFA Champions League group stages and helped Napoli into the final 16.[19] At the end of his first season with Napoli, Dzemaili has made 28 appearances in the Serie A, scoring three times and providing four assists.[19] On 25 March 2012, he scored a notable long distance goal against Catania.[22]

Džemaili had appeared regularly for the side in the Coppa Italia, and played the entire match in the final in which they defeated Juventus 2–0.[23]

On 30 March 2013, he scored a hat-trick described by Goal.com as "spectacular", in a 5–3 win away at Torino.[24] He netted the second goal in a 2–0 win against Genoa just a week later, making it four goals in two games. He also scored Napoli's third goal in a 3–0 win against Pescara on 27 April.[19]

Džemaili was an unused substitute as Napoli won the 2014 Coppa Italia Final 3–1 against Fiorentina.[25]

Galatasaray[edit]

On 1 September 2014, Džemaili signed a three-year contract with Turkish Süper Lig team Galatasaray for a €2.35 million transfer fee.[26] He signed a three-year contract, worth €2.4 million, €2.1 million and €2.1 million respectively.[26]

Genoa (loan)[edit]

On 30 August 2015, Džemaili returned to Serie A to join Genoa on loan from Galatasaray. Galatasaray also bore €1.3 million of Džemaili's €2.1 million salary.[27] On 27 September, Džemaili scored his first goal for the club with a direct free-kick that took a deflection off Giacomo Bonaventura. This was the lone goal in a 1–0 win over Milan. On 18 October, Džemaili received his first red card for the club, after getting two yellows (47' and 55') in a 3–2 win over Chievo.

2016–17 season[edit]

Džemaili returned to Galatasaray on 1 July 2016. He played once for the club against Manchester United in the club's pre-season friendlies.[28]

Bologna[edit]

On 17 August 2016, Džemaili returned to Italy again for Bologna,[29] who paid Galatasaray a €1.3 million transfer fee.[30] He was booked in matchday 33 on 22 April, missing the match on 30 April with the club mathematically avoiding the relegation by having 13 more points than Crotone with four matches remaining. Džemaili would join his new club Montreal Impact before the end of the Serie A season (and after Bologna secured the place of next season), making their 3–2 loss against Atalanta his last match.

Montreal Impact[edit]

It was announced on 9 December 2016 by Montreal Impact president and Bologna chairman Joey Saputo that Džemaili will be joining the Major League Soccer (MLS) team as a new designated player in spring 2017.[31] On 9 May 2017, the transfer became official.[32][33]

International career[edit]

Džemaili marking Lionel Messi in a friendly against Argentina in 2012

Džemaili made his debut for the Switzerland national team in a friendly match against Scotland on 1 March 2006.[34]

Džemaili was a member of the Swiss squad at the 2006 FIFA World Cup without making an appearance.[34]

On 6 September 2013, Džemaili scored his first international goal from a penalty kick in a 4–4 home draw in a World Cup qualifier against Iceland.[35]

On 2 June 2014, Džemaili was named in Switzerland's 2014 World Cup squad by national coach Ottmar Hitzfeld.[36] In the team's second match, against France, Džemaili came on at half-time for Valon Behrami and on the 81st minute, Džemaili fired a long-range, low free-kick which went through the three-man wall and beat France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.[37] He scored the first direct free-kick of the tournament in a 5–2 loss to France.[38][39]

Džemaili scored his third international goal against San Marino on 10 October 2014 in UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying, heading-in Ricardo Rodríguez's corner to give the Swiss a 3–0 lead in an eventual 4–0 victory.

Džemaili scored twice for Switzerland on 10 June 2015, the second of which came from a direct free-kick in a 3–0 friendly victory over Liechtenstein at Stockhorn Arena in Thun.[40]

Džemaili was part of the squad in Euro 2016 and 2018 World Cup qualification.

Style of play[edit]

In his time in Serie A, Džemaili differed from most other midfielders in his more box-to-box role in the attacking midfield. He is good at timing his runs and getting into the box unmarked. Otherwise, Džemaili has a decent shot and great passing range, usually completing around 90% of passes per game.[41]

Personal life[edit]

In 2015, Džemaili married Shkoder-born Albanian model Erjona Sulejmani[42] who, in the same year, gave birth to their eldest son, Luan.

Career statistics[edit]

Club[edit]

As of 20 May 2015 [citation needed]
Club Season League Cup Other Europe Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Bolton Wanderers 2007–08 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0
Total 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0
Torino 2008–09 30 0 2 0 32 2
Total 30 0 2 0 32 0
Parma 2009–10 19 1 2 0 21 1
2010–11 30 1 1 0 31 1
Total 49 2 3 0 52 2
Napoli 2011–12 28 3 5 0 6 0 39 3
2012–13 34 7 0 0 0 0 7 2 41 9
2013–14 24 6 1 0 4 0 29 6
Total 86 16 6 0 0 0 17 2 109 18
Galatasaray 2014–15 11 0 5 1 0 0 4 0 20 1
Total 11 0 5 1 0 0 4 0 20 1
Genoa (loan) 2015–16 20 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 20 2
Total 20 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 20 2
Career totals 196 20 17 1 0 0 21 2 234 23

International goals[edit]

As of 3 September 2017 [43]

Switzerland score listed first, score column indicates score after each Džemaili goal.

International goals by date, venue, cap, opponent, score, result and competition
No. Date Venue Cap Opponent Score Result Competition
1 6 September 2013 Stade de Suisse, Bern, Switzerland 27  Iceland 4–1 4–4 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification
2 20 June 2014 Itaipava Arena Fonte Nova, Salvador, Brazil 35  France 1–5 2–5 2014 FIFA World Cup
3 14 October 2014 San Marino Stadium, Serravalle, San Marino 39  San Marino 3–0 4–0 UEFA Euro 2016 qualification
4 10 June 2015 Stockhorn Arena, Thun, Switzerland 41  Liechtenstein 1–0 3–0 Friendly
5 3–0
6 28 May 2016 Stade de Genève, Geneva, Switzerland 47  Belgium 1–0 1–2 Friendly
7 3 September 2017 Skonto Stadium, Riga, Latvia 58  Latvia 2–0 3–0 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification

Honours[edit]

Club[edit]

Zürich
Napoli
Galatasaray

References[edit]

  1. ^ "2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil: List of Players" (PDF). FIFA. 11 June 2014. p. 30. Retrieved 25 June 2014. 
  2. ^ "Balkan imports hitting big time as Switzerland establish themselves as World Cup regulars". The National. 15 June 2014. Retrieved 21 July 2014. 
  3. ^ dzemaili. "Blerim Dzemaili". Skyrock. 
  4. ^ a b "Die Schönen und das Biest" (in German). schweizer-illustrierte. 17 April 2009. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 
  5. ^ "Blerim Dzemaili". Goal.com. 26 December 2011. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 
  6. ^ "Bolton swoop for Dzemaili and Cid". BBC Sport. 9 February 2007. Retrieved 16 June 2009. 
  7. ^ "Bolton swoop for Dzemaili and Cid". FIFA. AFP. 9 February 2007. Retrieved 16 October 2011. 
  8. ^ "Dzemaili suffers bad blow". SkySports. British Sky Broadcasting. 9 February 2007. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 
  9. ^ "Dzemaili has no regrets". SkySports. British Sky Broadcasting. 9 February 2007. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 
  10. ^ "Genoa: Milito e Jankovic". La Gazzetta dello Sport (in Italian). RCS MediaGroup. 1 September 2008. Retrieved 15 August 2016. 
  11. ^ Torino to take up Dzemaili option 8 April 2009
  12. ^ Torino F.C. S.p.A. bilancio (financial report and accounts) on 31 December 2009, PDF purchased from Italian C.C.I.A.A. (in Italian)
  13. ^ "Džemaili quits Bolton for Torino". BBC Sport. The British Broadcasting Corporation. 15 June 2009. Retrieved 15 June 2009. 
  14. ^ "Džemaili signs for Torino". Sky Sports. 15 June 2009. Retrieved 15 June 2009. 
  15. ^ "Torino vs Figline 1–0" (in Italian). Torino F.C. 9 August 2009. Archived from the original on 17 September 2009. Retrieved 1 September 2009. 
  16. ^ Carminati, Nadia (31 August 2009). "Parma pounce for Dzemaili". Sky Sports. Retrieved 22 April 2010. 
  17. ^ "Movimenti di mercato e compartecipazioni" [Market movements and co-ownerships]. Parma F.C. official site. 24 June 2011. Archived from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 24 June 2011. 
  18. ^ a b c Parma F.C. S.p.A. bilancio (financial report and accounts) on 30 June 2011, PDF purchased from Italian C.C.I.A.A. (in Italian)
  19. ^ a b c d "Blerim Dzemaili Stats". ESPN soccernet. 26 December 2011. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 
  20. ^ "Cavani at the double". ESPN soccernet. 3 December 2011. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 
  21. ^ "Dzemaili levels late on". ESPN soccernet. 11 December 2011. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 
  22. ^ "Napoli Catania 2012 Highlights Video Goals Napoli Catania 2–2". www.thesoccerblog.org. 
  23. ^ Graffeo, Vito (20 May 2012). "Coppa Italia, finale Juventus-Napoli: tabellino, risultato, video". Sport Live. Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  24. ^ Caferoglu, Livio (30 March 2013). "Serie A Round 30 Results: Lazio prosper on Klose return as Roma & Fiorentina fall flat in top-three race". Goal.com. Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  25. ^ "Partenopei come out on top in Coppa Italia final". Goal.com. 3 May 2014. Retrieved 7 May 2014. 
  26. ^ a b "Profesyonel Futbolcu Blerim Dzemaili'nin Transferi Hakkında". Galatasaray (in Turkish). Turkish Public Disclosure Platform (KAP). 1 September 2014. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  27. ^ Galatasaray (1 September 2015). "Blerim Dzemaili – Geçici Transfer" (in Turkish). Turkish Public Disclosure Platform (KAP). Retrieved 6 November 2015. 
  28. ^ Hazırlık Maçı | Manchester United 5 – 2 Galatasaray(in Turkish)
  29. ^ "Blerim Džemaili signs for Bologna". Bologna F.C. 1909. 17 August 2016. Retrieved 19 August 2016. 
  30. ^ "Results or Ending of Transfer Meetings". Galatasaray (in Turkish). Turkish Public Disclosure Platform (KAP). 17 August 2016. Retrieved 19 August 2016. 
  31. ^ Tremblay, Olivier (December 9, 2016). "Blerim Džemaili to join Impact, Joey Saputo confirms". MLS. 
  32. ^ "UFFICIALE Montreal: preso Dzemaili". 
  33. ^ "Impact acquires Swiss international midfielder Blerim Dzemaili". 9 May 2017. 
  34. ^ a b "Blerim DZEMAILI". FIFA. Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  35. ^ "Switzerland 4–4 Iceland". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  36. ^ "Switzerland World Cup 2014 squad". The Telegraph. 2 June 2014. Retrieved 16 June 2014. 
  37. ^ "(Roundup) Costa Rica beat Italy to advance, England eliminated". globalpost. 20 June 2014. Archived from the original on 15 July 2014. Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  38. ^ "Switzerland 2–5 France". BBC. 20 June 2014. Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  39. ^ "Blerim Džemaili scores the first direct free kick of the World Cup". SBNation. 20 June 2014. Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  40. ^ Smith, Adam (10 June 2015). "Switzerland 3–0 Liechtenstein: Blerim Dzemaili and Xherdan Shaqiri star in Thun as the Swiss make it six games unbeaten". Daily Mail. Retrieved 10 June 2015. 
  41. ^ Jiang, Allan (2 July 2014). "Scouting Report: Can Blerim Dzemaili Be Arsenal's Michu?". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 19 May 2015. 
  42. ^ "Erjona Sulejmani: Martesë përrallore me Blerim Xhemailin, ju tregoj si u njohëm". Panorama. 3 February 2017. Retrieved 8 July 2017. 
  43. ^ Blerim Džemaili at Soccerway

External links[edit]