Christian Abbiati

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Christian Abbiati
Christian Abbiati 2012.jpg
Abbiati playing for Milan in 2012
Personal information
Full name Christian Abbiati
Date of birth (1977-07-08) 8 July 1977 (age 38)
Place of birth Abbiategrasso, Italy
Height 1.91 m (6 ft 3 in)
Playing position Goalkeeper
Club information
Current team
Number 32
Youth career
1991–1992 Trezzano
1992–1993 Assago
1993–1994 Corsico
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1994–1998 Monza 52 (0)
1995–1996 Borgosesia (loan) 29 (0)
1998– Milan 280 (0)
2005–2006 Juventus (loan) 19 (0)
2006–2007 Torino (loan) 36 (0)
2007–2008 Atlético Madrid (loan) 21 (0)
National team
1998–2000 Italy U21 20 (0)
2000–2007 Italy 4 (0)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 17:36, 17 August 2015 (UTC).

† Appearances (goals)

Christian Abbiati (Italian pronunciation: [ˈkristjan abˈbjati]; born 8 July 1977) is an Italian professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Italian Serie A club Milan.

Abbiati, who has been with Milan since 1998 started his career with Monza, has played more than 300 official matches for Milan. He has also spent loan spells at Borgosesia Calcio, Juventus, Torino and Atletico Madrid. His honours include three Serie A titles, one Coppa Italia, two Supercoppa Italiana victories, one UEFA Champions League and one UEFA Super Cup.

Although he was selected by Italy at Euro 2000 and the 2002 World Cup, he did not represent them until a 2-1 friendly win against Switzerland in 2003. He has been capped 4 times by the national team.

Abbiati broke Sebastiano Rossi's record for the most appearances as a goalkeeper for Milan.[1] In his prime, Abbiati was a strong, composed, reliable, reactive, and talented keeper, although he has also attracted controversy after expressing his far right wing political views.[2] Despite being somewhat inconsistent during later years, he was regarded as one of the best young Italian goalkeepers of his generation since his emergence for Milan in Serie A in the late 90s.[3]

Club career[edit]


His debut in Serie A came on 17 January 1999 as a 92nd-minute substitute for Sebastiano Rossi; Abbiati picked up a league title with Milan that season despite being third choice goalkeeper behind Rossi and Jens Lehmann. He then became Milan's first choice goalkeeper due to his performances, for four years, until he lost his starting spot to backup Dida early in the 2002–03 season after picking up an injury during a Champions League qualifying match in August 2002. Dida's top form effectively grounded Abbiati's playing time to a halt. Despite his relegation to the bench, Abbiati still managed to contribute to Milan's Coppa Italia and Champions League victories that season.

Abbiati appeared in Milan's Supercoppa Italiana defeat to Juventus on penalties, but Dida later regained his position as starting goalkeeper over Abbiati. On 25 August 2004, a brief controversy surfaced when an editorial criticizing Dida and Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti appeared on Abbiati's official website, stating that Dida had made mistakes in a friendly against Sampdoria and that Ancelotti was blocking a move that would have sent Abbiati to Palermo.[4] Abbiati denied that he'd written the piece and said that it had been posted by his webmaster. "I never speak to the person who looks after my site. I would never judge one of my teammates."[5] Though his webmaster claimed responsibility for the article, speculation nonetheless arose that it had been actually penned by Abbiati due to his frustration at warming the bench as Milan went on to win the Serie A title that season with Dida as starting keeper.

Abbiati played all of thirty seconds in Milan's 2004–05 Champions League campaign, when he came on as a substitute in the 74th minute after Dida had been struck by a flare thrown from the crowd during the quarter-final second leg against Internazionale, which was ultimately suspended less than a minute later. His last match in a Milan kit came on 20 May 2005 in a 3–3 home draw with Palermo, a match that saw the starters rested for the upcoming Champions League Final, which Milan lost to Liverpool after throwing away a 3–0 half time lead. Milan finished second in Serie A that season.

Loan spells[edit]

Abbiati announced his desire to move to another club in order to contend for the #1 spot and was therefore loaned to Genoa for the 2005–06 season in July 2005, but he immediately returned to Milan after Genoa were relegated to Serie C1 due to a match-fixing scandal.

Abbiati in 2008

Juventus & Torino[edit]

He was soon on the move again, as he was shipped to Juventus as a temporary replacement for incumbent Gianluigi Buffon, who had suffered a dislocated shoulder during the Luigi Berlusconi Trophy match against Milan in August 2005. With long-awaited regular playing time at his disposal, he flourished with the Bianconeri, but when Buffon returned to the starting lineup six months later, Abbiati's services were no longer needed, and he left at the end of the season for another Turin squad when Milan loaned him to Torino F.C. in July 2006. Although Juventus managed to win the Serie A title that season, it was later revoked due to their involvement in the Calciopoli scandal, and they were relegated to Serie B the following season.

Atlético Madrid[edit]

Despite expressing his desire to stay for another season, he and Torino ultimately parted ways due to a salary dispute. He was once again loaned out by Milan for the third time in three seasons, this time to Spanish club Atlético Madrid until June 2008.[6] He began the season on the bench until an injury to incumbent Leo Franco put him in the starting lineup. On 29 December, he expressed interest in staying with Atlético beyond 2007-08 season. "My adaptation has gone better than I expected. I am happy at this club because they have helped me so much. I like playing in Spain and I think I will learn a lot during the time that I have left here."[7]

Return to Milan[edit]

Christian Abbiati in action for Milan in 2012

Abbiati returned to Italy after being called back by Milan for the 2008–09 season and took over as first choice from Željko Kalac after a solid preseason. However, on 15 March 2009, his season was cut short following a severe knee injury in the first half of Milan's 5–1 league win over A.C. Siena, after he suffered ligament damage to his right knee from a collision with teammate Giuseppe Favalli. He was ruled out of action for six months following rehabilitation and knee surgery.[8] In 28 appearances, he kept eleven clean sheets and conceded 27 goals. On 8 November, nearly eight months after the injury, Abbiati was called up as Milan's third-choice behind Dida and new acquisition Flavio Roma for Milan's 2–1 away win over S.S. Lazio.

In 2010–11, Abbiati returned as the starting goalkeeper for Milan after Dida's departure. He added 2 more year to his contract in July 2010, to last until 30 June 2013.[9] He made some crucial saves in the first half of the season and was one of the primary reasons to Milan holding a top spot by January 2011. On 7 May 2011, after a series of good performances in crucial matches in the second half of the season, Milan clinched their first Serie A trophy in 7 years. Abbiati followed up this victory by winning the Supercoppa Italiana over inter-city rivals Inter, although they were unable to defend their Serie A title, finishing in second place behind Juventus.

On 20 May 2013 Abbiati signed a new 1-year contract.[10] His contract was renewed again on 21 May 2014.[11]

In 2014–15, he was Milan's second-choice following arrival of Diego López. He got a new 1-year contract extension on 1 July 2015.[12]

International career[edit]

Abbiati received his first call-up for Italy as the third goalkeeper for Euro 2000, after Gianluigi Buffon withdrew from the squad through injury, and was part of the squad that participated in the 2000 Summer Olympics. However, he did not earn his first cap until a 2–1 victory over Switzerland on 30 April 2003. Abbiati was left off the 2006 World Cup roster but he was recalled to the national team in September 2006. In March 2009, three days before his season-ending knee injury, he said that he would refuse a future call-up for Italy in a non-starting role.[13]

Personal life[edit]

In September 2008, Abbiati attracted much controversy and criticism from the Italian media when he declared that he is a fascist in an interview with the Italian sports magazine Sportweek.[2] Although he later stated that he rejected the Fascist racial laws and aggressive foreign policy, he still confirmed his right-wing political beliefs and went on to add: "I am not ashamed to proclaim my political beliefs. I share [the] ideals of fascism, such as the fatherland and the values of the Catholic religion."[2][14]

Abbiati is married to an Italian woman, Stefania Abbiati.[15] Abbiati and his wife's daughter, Giulia Abbiati, was born 30 January 2000.[15]

Career statistics[edit]

As of 30 May 2015[16]
Club statistics
Club Season League Cup Continental Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Monza 1994-95 Serie A 1 0 0 0 1 0
1996-97 Serie A 25 0 0 0 25 0
1997-98 Serie A 26 0 2 0 28 0
Total 52 0 2 0 54 0
Borgosesia (loan) 1995-96 Serie A 29 0 0 0 29 0
Total 29 0 0 0 29 0
Milan 1998-99 Serie A 18 0 0 0 0 0 18 0
1999-2000 Serie A 29 0 0 0 6[a] 0 0 0 35 0
2000-01 Serie A 21 0 4 0 7[a] 0 32 0
2001-02 Serie A 34 0 1 0 11[b] 0 46 0
2002-03 Serie A 3 0 8 0 6[a] 0 0 0 17 0
2003-04 Serie A 2 0 4 0 1[a] 0 1[c] 0 8 0
2004-05 Serie A 3 0 4 0 1[a] 0 8 0
2008-09 Serie A 28 0 0 0 0 0 28 0
2009-10 Serie A 9 0 1 0 1[a] 0 11 0
2010-11 Serie A 35 0 1 0 6[a] 0 42 0
2011-12 Serie A 31 0 0 0 9[a] 0 1[a] 0 41 0
2012-13 Serie A 28 0 1 0 7[a] 0 36 0
2013-14 Serie A 28 0 2 0 9[a] 0 39 0
2014-15 Serie A 11 0 2 0 13 0
Total 280 0 28 0 64 0 2 0 374 0
Juventus (loan) 2005-06 Serie A 19 0 2 0 6[a] 0 27 0
Total 19 0 2 0 6 0 27 0
Torino (loan) 2006-07 Serie A 36 0 2 0 38 0
Total 36 0 2 0 38 0
Atlético Madrid (loan) 2007-08 La Liga 21 0 0 0 9[b] 0 30 0
Total 21 0 0 0 9 0 30 0
Career total 437 0 34 0 79 0 2 0 552 0
  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Appearances in UEFA Champions League Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "UCL" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page). Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "UCL" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page). Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "UCL" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page). Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "UCL" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  2. ^ a b Appearances in UEFA Europa League
  3. ^ Appearances in Italian Supercup

International appearances[edit]

Year Apps Goals
2003 2 0
2005 2 0
Total 4 0







Cavaliere OMRI BAR.svg
5th Class / Knight: Cavaliere Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana: (2000)[21]


  1. ^ "Abbiati in Milan history books". Footballitalia. Retrieved 1 October 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c "Quel fascino per la camicia nera che cresce nel mondo del calcio". Retrieved 14 November 2014. 
  3. ^ "Abbiati è una sicurezza". Retrieved 14 November 2014. 
  4. ^ August 2004 editorial –, 25 August 2004 (in Italian)
  5. ^ Abbiati calms Milan rift – Football Italia, 26 August 2004
  6. ^ AC Milan to loan goalkeeper Christian Abbiati to Atletico Madrid – SLAM! Sports, 26 June 2007
  7. ^ Abbiati Wants to Extend Atlético Stay –, 29 December 2007
  8. ^ Complex knee injury rules Abbiati out for season – AFP, 16 March 2009
  9. ^ "VAI CHRISTIAN!". AC Milan (in Italian). 20 July 2010. Retrieved 6 May 2011. 
  10. ^ "ABBIATI: A.C. MILAN COMUNICATO UFFICIALE" (in Italian). AC Milan. 20 May 2013. Retrieved 24 May 2014. 
  11. ^ "AC MILAN COMUNICATO UFFICIALE" (in Italian). AC Milan. 21 May 2014. Retrieved 22 May 2014. 
  12. ^ "Abbiati: prolungamento ufficiale al 30 Giugno 2016.". Retrieved 12 July 2015. 
  13. ^ Milan's Abbiati: I Don't Want To Be Third Choice For Italy –, 12 March 2009
  14. ^ I'm a fascist, says AC Milan star Christian AbbiatiThe Guardian, 27 September 2008
  15. ^ a b "La nascita di Giulia". (in Italian). Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  16. ^ "Marco Amelia". AC Milan. Retrieved 27 February 2014. 
  17. ^ "Christian Abbiati". National football team. Retrieved 13 March 2014. 
  18. ^ "Christian Abbiati - A.C. Milan Profile". A.C. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
  19. ^ "Christian Abbiati". Eurosport. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
  20. ^ "C. Abbiati". Soccerway. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
  21. ^ "Abbiati Sig. Christian - Cavaliere Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana". (in Italian). Retrieved 1 January 2010. 

External links[edit]