Didier Agathe

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Didier Agathe
Personal information
Full name Fernand Didier Agathe[1]
Date of birth (1975-08-16) 16 August 1975 (age 41)
Place of birth Saint-Pierre, Réunion, France
Height 1.81 m (5 ft 11 12 in)
Playing position Wingback
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1992–1999 Montpellier 41 (3)
1996–1997 Alès (loan) 29 (4)
1999–2000 Raith Rovers 30 (7)
2000 Hibernian 5 (4)
2000–2006 Celtic 122 (9)
2006–2007 Aston Villa 5 (0)
2007–2087 JS Saint-Pierroise
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 08:50, 14 August 2010 (UTC).

Fernand Didier Agathe (born 16 August 1975) is a French professional footballer.

Agathe began his career at French side Montpellier HSC before moving to Scotland to join Raith Rovers and then Hibernian. His performances gained him a high profile transfer to Celtic where he enjoyed the most successful spell of his career winning three championships and was part of the squad that reached the 2003 UEFA Cup Final.

Career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Didier Agathe was spotted in his homeland of La Réunion began by a scout from French Ligue 1 club Montpellier HSC in 1992. Although several other clubs expressed an interest in signing Agathe, he chose to join Montpellier given their location in the south of France.[2][3] His time in France was marred by illness and injury; his appendix burst shortly after arriving, and afterwards he suffered a string of injuries before medical staff found he had no cartilage in his right knee.[2] During his time in France, he was loaned out for a spell to Olympique Alès where he played 29 games and scored four goals.[3]

Raith Rovers[edit]

At the end of his contract with Montpellier, Agathe travelled to England in 1999 to try and find a club to continue his professional career.[2] He had a successful trial with Stockport County, but the move fell through when he failed the medical.[2] He was then introduced to agent Willie McKay who persuaded Agathe to try finding a club in Scotland.[2] McKay took him to Kirkcaldy, where local club Raith Rovers were looking for a striker having lost their first four games of the season. Although he had never played a competitive game as a forward, Agathe told Raith Rovers manager John McVeigh that he had, and he scored twice in a bounce game against the first team.[2] He then played days later against Airdrie as a trialist, and scored a hat-trick.[2][3] He went on to play over 30 games for Raith that season, scoring seven times.

Hibernian[edit]

When his deal at Raith Rovers expired in the summer of 2000, the best offer available at the time to Agathe was a short-term deal at Scottish Premier League club Hibernian.[2] He missed an open goal in his debut against Hearts.[2] He redeemed himself in his next two matches, scoring braces against Dundee United and Dundee in consecutive weeks,[4] the latter game including a solo goal where he ran from the half-way line, evaded the challenges of four Dundee players before shooting past goalkeeper Rab Douglas.[5]

Celtic[edit]

His form at Hibs caught the eye of Celtic manager Martin O'Neill, and on the expiration of his short-term contract Celtic made a move to sign him. Agathe's knee condition was noted during his medical, but O'Neill was not concerned and completed the signing of Agathe for just £27,000.[2][6]

Agathe made his debut for Celtic on 14 October 2000 in a home league game against St Mirren. Fielded by O'Neill wide on the right, Agathe turned in an outstanding performance in a 2–0 win for Celtic, with his pace and skill running the St Mirren defence ragged.[6][7] O'Neill enthused about Agathe's debut, "He was absolutely brilliant, fantastic even. I did not think he would last more than 60 minutes but he has so much strength and pace".[7] Agathe kept his place in the team, playing at right wingback, and scored his first goal for Celtic in December 2000 against Dundee with a header in the last minute to give his team a 2–1 win.[8] He went to help Celtic win a domestic treble of League, Scottish Cup and Scottish League Cup that season.[6] Agathe provided the assist for Jackie McNamara's opening goal in their 3–0 win over Hibs in the Scottish Cup Final.[8] However he was cup-tied for their victorious 2000–01 Scottish League Cup campaign.[9]

O'Neill continued to use Agathe as either a right back or right wingback and was a regular in his side. The club won three championships and reached the 2003 UEFA Cup Final.[6][10] Following good performances in European competition he was once linked with moves to Juventus and Valencia during the 2001–02 season.[citation needed]. In February 2004, the Scotland manager Berti Vogts expressed interest in selecting Agathe.[11]

Agathe hardly featured during the 2005–06 season under new manager Gordon Strachan and was linked with a loan move to Leeds United,[12] then he had a trial at Middlesbrough.[13] In February 2006, he was released from his contract.[14]

Aston Villa[edit]

Agathe underwent a trial at Premier League side Blackburn Rovers prior to the 2006–07 season. He began training with Aston Villa, managed by his former Celtic boss Martin O'Neill, after his attempt at joining Blackburn was unsuccessful. He agreed a short term contract[15] and made his Villa début at home to Tottenham Hotspur in a 1–1 draw. On 11 January 2007, however, Agathe parted company with Aston Villa, after they chose not to extend his short term contract.[16] Agathe made a total of six substitute appearances in his short time at Villa Park, but did not start a single game.

JS Saint-Pierroise[edit]

He then signed for JS Saint-Pierroise, a club in his homeland of Réunion.

Agathe has set up an academy for young footballers on Réunion.[10] Three players – Heeking Jerome, Mathis Yohan and Jeremy Judith – signed for Stirling Albion in August 2010.[10]

On 8 September 2013, Agathe played for the "Celtic XI" during the Stiliyan Petrov charity match put on by Celtic FC.[17]

Career statistics[edit]

[18][19][20]

Club Season League Cup League Cup Other Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Raith Rovers 1999–2000 30 7 1 0 0 0 1 0 32 7
Hibernian 2000–01 5 4 0 0 1 0 - - 6 4
Celtic 2000–01 27 3 6 0 5 0 2 0 36 3
2001–02 20 1 3 0 1 0 8 1 32 2
2002–03 27 0 0 0 2 0 11 0 40 0
2003–04 28 5 5 0 0 0 14 1 47 7
2004–05 16 0 2 0 1 0 5 0 24 0
2005–06 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 0
Total 122 9 16 0 5 0 40 2 183 11
Aston Villa 2006–07 5 0 0 0 1 0 - - 6 0
Career total 162 20 17 0 7 0 41 2 227 22

Honours[edit]

[21]

Scottish Premier League (3): 2000-01, 2001-02, 2003-04

Scottish Cup (3): 2001, 2004, 2005

Scottish League Cup (1): 2000-01

Film[edit]

Agathe, who played over 100 league games for Celtic, was portrayed in fiction as a Rangers striker in the Robert Duvall movie, A Shot at Glory.[22]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Didier Agathe". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 6 March 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Kyle, Gregor (12 September 2015). "Celtic legend Didier Agathe, my story: The truth is I should never have played football.. and I am lucky to be alive". Daily Record. Retrieved 7 June 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c "Biography". Didier Agathe Academy. Retrieved 7 June 2016. 
  4. ^ "Hibernian - Didier Agathe". FitbaStats. Retrieved 7 June 2016. 
  5. ^ "Hibees hit high spots". BBC Sport. 12 August 2000. Retrieved 7 June 2016. 
  6. ^ a b c d Larkin, Paul (29 May 2012). "Real Cult Heroes – Part 2". Hail Hail Media. 2. Retrieved 10 June 2016. 
  7. ^ a b Archer, Ian (15 October 2000). "Celtic 2-0 St Mirren: Dancing Didier". ESPN. Retrieved 10 June 2016. 
  8. ^ a b Murdoch, AB. "So farewell then... Didier Agathe". Not The View. Archived from the original on 30 June 2009. Retrieved 10 June 2016. 
  9. ^ "Celtic clinch Cup with Larsson treble". BBC. 18 March 2001. Retrieved 25 November 2016. 
  10. ^ a b c "Three join Stirling Albion from Agathe's academy". BBC Sport. 13 August 2010. Retrieved 13 August 2010. 
  11. ^ Clark, Graham (2 February 2004). "Dour debut for other De Boer". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  12. ^ "Boro and Leeds targeting Agathe". BBC Sport. 30 December 2005. Retrieved 23 September 2016. 
  13. ^ "Celtic's Agathe starts Boro trial". BBC Sport. 24 January 2006. Retrieved 23 September 2016. 
  14. ^ "Celtic agree to let Agathe leave". BBC Sport. 1 February 2006. Retrieved 23 September 2016. 
  15. ^ "Villa give Agathe short-term deal". BBC Sport. 12 September 2006. Retrieved 23 September 2016. 
  16. ^ "Agathe parts company with Villa". BBC. 11 January 2007. Retrieved 13 January 2007. 
  17. ^ http://www.footballorgin.com/2013/09/charity-match-celtic-legends-xi-v.html
  18. ^ "Didier Agathe". Soccerbase. Retrieved 12 June 2016. 
  19. ^ "Agathe, Didier". FitbaStats. Retrieved 12 June 2016. 
  20. ^ "Agathe, Didier". FitbaStats. Retrieved 12 June 2016. 
  21. ^ "Didier Agathe". Eurosport. Retrieved 12 June 2016. 
  22. ^ Trivia for A Shot at Glory, Internet Movie Database.

External links[edit]