Danny Welbeck

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Danny Welbeck
Danny Welbeck 20120611.jpg
Welbeck with England at UEFA Euro 2012
Personal information
Full name Daniel Nii Tackie Mensah Welbeck[1]
Date of birth (1990-11-26) 26 November 1990 (age 25)[1]
Place of birth Longsight, Manchester, England
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)[2]
Playing position Forward
Club information
Current team
Number 23
Youth career
2001–2008 Manchester United
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2008–2014 Manchester United 92 (20)
2010 Preston North End (loan) 8 (2)
2010–2011 Sunderland (loan) 26 (6)
2014– Arsenal 25 (4)
National team
2006–2007 England U17 11 (2)
2007–2008 England U18 2 (2)
2008–2009 England U19 8 (2)
2009–2011 England U21 14 (5)
2011– England 33 (14)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 22:30, 17 May 2015 (UTC).
† Appearances (goals)

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 21:43, 27 March 2015 (UTC)[3]

Daniel Nii Tackie Mensah "Danny" Welbeck (born 26 November 1990) is an English professional footballer who plays as a centre-forward for Arsenal and the England national team. He can also play as a winger.

Welbeck made his way through the youth teams at Manchester United before making his senior debut in 2008 and scoring in the process. He was with United when they won the 2008–09 Football League Cup and the 2008 FIFA Club World Cup before being sent on loan to Preston North End and more recently Sunderland. From the 2011–12 season, Welbeck was a regular figure in the Manchester United first team. He transferred to Arsenal in September 2014 for an estimated fee of £16 million.

He made his senior England debut in March 2011 in a 1–1 friendly draw against Ghana, the homeland of both of his parents. He scored his first senior international goal on 2 June 2012, the only goal in a friendly victory over Belgium. Welbeck has gone on to represent England at UEFA Euro 2012 and the 2014 FIFA World Cup, earning over 30 caps.

Club career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Born in Longsight, Manchester, England,[4] to Ghanaian parents,[5] Welbeck was first spotted by Manchester United as a six-year-old.[6] At eight years old, he impressed with local side Fletcher Moss, and was finally picked up by the Manchester United youth academy.[7] He joined United during the 2005–06 season, making his debut for the club's Under-18 side on 8 April 2006 in a league match against Sunderland.[8] He then came on as a substitute in the next game, before being named as an unused substitute in the team's last two games of the season.[8] The following season, he made a further 28 appearances for the Under-18s, scoring nine goals, including eight appearances and one goal in the FA Youth Cup, in which he helped the team to reach the final, despite being two years younger than some of the other players.[8] He was not handicapped despite suffering from Osgood–Schlatter disease,[9] and was making rapid progress, despite his pneumonia.

Welbeck signed his first trainee contract in July 2007, and started the 2007–08 season in the Under-18 side, but was quickly promoted to the reserve team, making a number of substitute appearances. Then, in January 2008, he was called up to the first team for the trip to Saudi Arabia to play Al-Hilal in Sami Al-Jaber's testimonial. Welbeck made his debut in that game on 21 January 2008, coming on as a 65th-minute substitute for Anderson. Welbeck had the chance to snatch a draw for United when he was brought down in the penalty area in the final minute, but he put the penalty kick over the bar.[10]

He joined the first-team squad partway through the 2007–08 season,[11] and made his competitive debut for the Manchester United first team on 23 September 2008, starting up front in a 3–1 home win against Middlesbrough in the League Cup Third Round.[12] Welbeck's Premier League debut was made on 15 November 2008, coming on as a 63rd-minute substitute for Park Ji-sung against Stoke City. He marked his debut with a curling 30-yard strike into the top right corner for United's fourth goal in a 5–0 win.[13]

On 23 September 2009, Welbeck scored his first goal of the 2009–10 season, the only one of the game in the League Cup Third Round against Wolverhampton Wanderers.[14] Welbeck made his Champions League debut in a 1–0 home defeat to Beşiktaş in November 2009.[15] The following month he signed a new contract, keeping him at Manchester United until 2013.[16]

Preston North End (loan)[edit]

On 25 January 2010, Welbeck became Alex Ferguson's son Darren Ferguson's first signing as Preston North End manager since he took charge earlier in the month, signing on loan for the remainder of the 2009–10 season.[17] As part of his recovery, he took part in a training session at Manchester United's training ground, but his knee swelled up again.[18] The injury required surgery and Welbeck's loan was cut short on 16 March so that he could return to Manchester United for the operation.[19]

Sunderland (loan)[edit]

Welbeck at the end of his Sunderland loan

On 12 August 2010, Welbeck became Steve Bruce's eighth summer signing after Sunderland signed the United striker on loan for the duration of the 2010–11 season.[20] His debut for Sunderland came on 14 August as an 83rd-minute substitute for Darren Bent in a 2–2 home draw against Birmingham City.[21] On 14 November, Welbeck scored his first Sunderland goal as he completed the scoring in a 3–0 away victory over Chelsea, rounding off what was described as an "impressive individual performance".[22] Eight days later, Welbeck scored his first home goals for Sunderland, striking twice in a 2–2 draw with Everton.[23]

Welbeck scored the only goal as Sunderland beat Bolton Wanderers on 18 December 2010,[24] and also scored on 1 January 2011 as Sunderland defeated Blackburn Rovers 3–0.[25] His form for Sunderland prompted widespread calls for an England call up, but on 5 January, he picked up a hamstring injury in a victory at Aston Villa, ruling him out for eight weeks.[26] He made his return on 5 March 2011, in a 0–0 draw away to Arsenal, coming on as a substitute for Steed Malbranque in the 68th minute; he almost scored a late goal that would have won the game for Sunderland in the 83rd minute, but his shot was saved by Wojciech Szczęsny.[27] He picked up an injury in the 4–2 home win over Wigan Athletic on 23 April, and he returned to Manchester United for treatment for the remainder of the season.[28]

Manchester United[edit]

2011–12 season[edit]

Welbeck was given a starting berth in the 2011 FA Community Shield match at Wembley Stadium on 7 August 2011. United won the game 3–2, having trailed rivals Manchester City 2–0 at half time. He started alongside Wayne Rooney in the first league game of the 2011–12 Premier League season away to West Bromwich Albion; he was substituted in the 65th minute, to be replaced by Dimitar Berbatov. On 22 August, Welbeck scored the opening goal of the match against Tottenham Hotspur, heading in a cross from Tom Cleverley from nine yards to score in the 61st minute. He then provided an assist for Anderson in the 76th minute to make the score 2–0 before being substituted. United eventually won the match at Old Trafford 3–0.[29] The next match against Arsenal also had Welbeck on the scoresheet. From outside the box, Anderson chipped the ball into Welbeck and he headed it over the goalkeeper to make the score 1–0. However, Welbeck had to leave the field early with a pulled hamstring which, consequently, ruled him out for several weeks.[30]

Welbeck scored twice in a Champions League group match against Basel on 27 September; the game ended 3–3.[31] Welbeck scored again in the next game, a 2–0 home win over Norwich City, after coming on as a second-half substitute. He exchanged passes with Park Ji-Sung before sweeping low into the bottom corner to seal the win. On 21 December 2011, Welbeck opened the scoring at Craven Cottage in a 5–0 United away win against Fulham. He met Nani's cross and steered the ball in with his left foot. On 8 January, Welbeck scored the second goal in a 3–2 away victory against Manchester City at the City of Manchester Stadium in the FA Cup third round. Patrice Evra made a half-cleared cross, which Welbeck volleyed into Costel Pantilimon's bottom corner. On 22 January, Welbeck scored the winning goal in the 81st minute in a 2–1 away victory at the Emirates Stadium over Arsenal—his third goal in three games.[32] His impressive performances throughout the 2011–12 campaign earned him a place on the shortlist for the 2012 PFA Young Player of the Year Award, which was won by Tottenham Hotspur defender Kyle Walker.[33] On 14 January, it was reported that Welbeck would sign a long-term contract at Old Trafford.[34]

2012–13 season[edit]

Welbeck challenging Fernando Recio of Kitchee SC in August 2013

Welbeck started the first match of the season against Everton on 20 August 2012, which ended 1–0 to Everton.[35] He was substituted for the club's new signing, Robin van Persie. On 22 August 2012, Welbeck signed a new four-year contract with Manchester United stating that playing for Manchester United is all he ever wanted.[36] He scored his first goal of the season on 20 October, in a 4–2 win at home to Stoke City.[37] On 13 February 2013, Welbeck scored a vital goal in a 1–1 draw against Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, heading in from a Wayne Rooney corner, his first goal in almost four months.[38] Welbeck's goal against Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium made him the first Englishman to score for a Premier League team at the Bernabéu since Leeds United's Alan Smith in 2001.[39] The England striker ended the season with a total of two goals in 40 appearances.[40]

2013–14 season[edit]

Welbeck scored on the opening day of the season, scoring twice in a 4–1 win against Swansea City in new manager David Moyes' first league game as Manchester United manager.[41] On 2 October 2013, he scored his only Champions League goal of the season in a 1–1 draw with Shakhtar Donetsk at the Donbass Arena.[42]

Between December 2013 and January 2014, Welbeck scored six goals in six Premier League matches.[43] On 15 December, he scored twice in a 3–0 win against Aston Villa at Villa Park.[44] On 21 December, he scored his first goal at Old Trafford since October 2012 in a 3–1 win over West Ham United.[45] On 28 December, he scored the only goal in United's win at Norwich City.[46] He then scored in home matches against Tottenham Hotspur and Swansea City in January 2014.[47]

On 9 March, Welbeck scored his tenth goal of the season in a 3–0 win at West Bromwich Albion.[48] At the end of the season, Welbeck declared his intention to leave United to play as a striker elsewhere after what he described as his unhappiest season, stating: "I've been playing on the left for a while and it’s got to the time when I want to stake a place up front".[49][50]


Welbeck playing for Arsenal in October 2014.

On 2 September 2014, in the late hours of deadline day, Welbeck joined Arsenal on a "long-term deal" for a fee in the region of £16 million.[51][52] Stating the reason for his departure to a direct rival, Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal said "Welbeck doesn't have the record of Robin van Persie or Wayne Rooney. We let him go because of Falcao, but also to allow the youngsters to fit in. That is the policy. That is why I am here." Welbeck left Manchester United making a total of 142 appearances, scoring 29 goals.[53] He was given the number 23 shirt, previously worn by Nicklas Bendtner who had departed the club for Wolfsburg.[54]

Welbeck made his Arsenal debut against the previous season's champions Manchester City at the Emirates in a 2–2 draw on 13 September.[55] Following his first two games for Arsenal, manager Arsène Wenger urged fans to be patient, saying: "Danny will improve—we don't have to make a problem of that. We have to be patient with him".[56] Welbeck scored his first Arsenal goal against Aston Villa in a 3–0 win on 20 September, and also set up a goal for Mesut Özil.[57] On 1 October, he scored a Champions League hat-trick—the first treble of his professional career—against Galatasaray in a 4–1 victory.[58]

On 9 March 2015, Welbeck scored the winning goal to knock out his former team, Manchester United, in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup at Old Trafford.[59] The following month, he was ruled out for the rest of the campaign with injury,[60] missing the Gunners' victory in the 2015 FA Cup Final.

Welbeck missed the opening weeks of his second season at Arsenal through injury, with it being announced that he would be out until Christmas with a knee injury.[60] Around the time that he was expected to return, it was instead confirmed that he would be out until February 2016 at the earliest.[61]

International career[edit]

England youth squads[edit]

Welbeck made his England Under-16s debut as a 14-year-old in October 2005 against Wales in the Victory Shield, which England won that year. He then progressed to the England Under-17s team, scoring the decider in a qualifying game against Serbia, to help his team progress to the 2007 UEFA U-17 European Championship. The tournament saw England finish as runners-up to Spain, which secured the team a place in the 2007 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Korea. There, Welbeck scored two goals against New Zealand, helping Scotland to reach the quarter-finals in their first involvement in the tournament. Welbeck was originally intended to be a squad member for England's European Under-19 Championship campaign in July 2008, but was forced to withdraw. He eventually made his debut for the Under-19s on 9 September 2008, playing the full 90 minutes in a 2–1 win over the Netherlands.

Welbeck made his England under-21 debut on 10 February 2009, in the 3–2 loss to Ecuador, coming on for Adam Johnson.[62] He followed this up with another substitute appearance in a 2–0 home defeat to France on 31 March.[63] He was then named in Stuart Pearce's original 23-man squad for the 2009 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship in Sweden on 27 May,[64] but he had to pull out of the squad on 31 May, due to an injury.[65] On 7 September 2010, Welbeck scored his first two goals for the England under-21 team in a 3–0 win over Lithuania.[66] He scored his third under-21 goal in a 4–0 away victory over Denmark on 24 March 2011.[67] Welbeck then started the first game of England's campaign at the 2011 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship against Spain. Welbeck scored an 88th-minute equaliser as England began the tournament with a 1–1 draw.

England senior team[edit]

Welbeck challenging Andrea Barzagli of Italy for a header at Euro 2012.

On 18 November 2008, it was reported that the Ghana Football Association was keeping tabs on Welbeck, with a view to him representing the Ghana national team in the future.[5] On 29 March 2011 Welbeck was called up to the England squad, for their friendly fixture against Ghana.[68] Welbeck replaced Ashley Young in the 81st minute of a 1–1 draw with Ghana at Wembley Stadium.[69]

He played in England's deciding Euro 2012 qualifier against Montenegro on 7 October 2011, coming on as a substitute for Theo Walcott in the second half.[70] On 29 May 2012, Welbeck was listed as a part of the confirmed 23-man squad for Roy Hodgson's England squad for UEFA Euro 2012. On 2 June 2012, he scored his first goal for England in a 1–0 win against Belgium, with a chip over goalkeeper Simon Mignolet after collecting a through ball from his Manchester United team-mate Ashley Young.[71] On 15 June 2012, Welbeck scored a backheeled winning goal in the 79th minute as England beat Sweden 3–2 in Euro 2012 in Kiev.[72]

Welbeck scored four goals in England's qualification for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, braces in two home matches: a 5–0 win over San Marino on 12 October 2012[73] and a 4–0 victory against Moldova on 6 September 2013,[74] He was called up for the final squad for the tournament.[75] and started in England's opening 2–1 defeat to Italy before being substituted for Ross Barkley after 61 minutes.[76] Welbeck also played England's second group game, a loss by the same score to Uruguay in which he was substituted for Adam Lallana for the last 19 minutes.[77]

On 8 September 2014, in England's first match of UEFA Euro 2016 qualification, Welbeck scored both goals in a 2–0 victory away to Switzerland at St. Jakob-Park, Basel.[78] He then scored in matches against San Marino, Slovenia and Lithuania to make him the top goalscorer in the qualifying phase with six goals from five matches.[79]

Career statistics[edit]


As of match played 10 August 2015.
Club statistics
Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Europe Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Manchester United 2008–09[80] Premier League 3 1 5 2 5 0 0 0 0 0 13 3
2009–10[81] Premier League 5 0 1 0 3 2 2[a] 0 0 0 11 2
2011–12[82] Premier League 30 9 2 1 1 0 5[b] 2 1[c] 0 39 12
2012–13[83] Premier League 27 1 4 0 2 0 7[a] 1 40 2
2013–14[84] Premier League 25 9 1 0 4 0 5[a] 1 1[c] 0 36 10
2014–15[85] Premier League 2 0 1 0 3 0
Total 92 20 13 3 16 2 19 4 2 0 142 29
Preston North End (loan) 2009–10[81] Championship 8 2 8 2
Sunderland (loan) 2010–11[86] Premier League 26 6 0 0 2 0 28 6
Arsenal 2014–15[85] Premier League 25 4 3 1 6[a] 3 34 8
2015–16[87] Premier League 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Career total 151 32 16 4 18 2 25 7 2 0 212 45
  1. ^ a b c d Appearances in UEFA Champions League
  2. ^ Two appearances and two goals in UEFA Champions League, three in UEFA Europa League
  3. ^ a b Appearance in FA Community Shield


As of match played 27 March 2015.[88]
International statistics
National team Year Apps Goals
England 2011 3 0
2012 11 5
2013 6 3
2014 12 5
2015 1 1
Total 33 14



Manchester United


Playing style[edit]

Due to his height, running style, and ethnicity, Welbeck has been compared to former Arsenal strikers Emmanuel Adebayor and Nwankwo Kanu,[90][91] but styled his game on another former Arsenal forward, his boyhood hero Thierry Henry.[92]

He has also been known for his work-rate and has been described as strong, quick, and very good in the air.[93]

Critics have acknowledged the strength in Welbeck's style of play such as his work-rate, pace and intelligence in following tactical command, especially after his performance in both of Manchester United's Champions League knock-out stage matches against Real Madrid in 2013.[94] Welbeck has been praised as a big-game player.[95][96][97]

Under England manager Roy Hodgson, who favours the 4–3–3 formation,[98][99] Welbeck's ability in supporting the attack, pressing the midfield and holding up the ball fit into the system.[100][101]


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