Valencia in 2014
|Full name||Enner Remberto Valencia Lastra|
|Date of birth||4 November 1989|
|Place of birth||Esmeraldas, Ecuador|
|Height||1.74 m (5 ft 9 in)|
|2014–2017||West Ham United||54||(8)|
|2016–2017||→ Everton (loan)||21||(3)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 22 August 2021|
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 9 September 2021
Valencia has previously played for Emelec in Ecuador, where he won the 2013 Ecuadorian Serie A and was awarded the Copa Sudamericana Golden Boot in 2013. Valencia also played for Pachuca in Mexico, being awarded the Liga MX Golden Boot in the 2014 Clausura tournament. He joined West Ham United for an estimated £12 million in July 2014.
At international level, Valencia has earned over 60 caps for Ecuador since his debut in 2012. He represented the nation at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the Copa América in 2015, 2016, 2019 and 2021. With 31 goals, Valencia is tied with Agustín Delgado for Ecuador's all-time top goalscorer, and shares with the same player the record for most goals at World Cup finals tournaments for the country, with three.
Valencia came to Guayaquil to trial for Emelec in 2008 from Caribe Junior's youth system, the same team where Ecuador star Antonio Valencia played in his early years. In 2008, he was transferred to Emelec. From 2008 to early 2010 he received no opportunities in the first team, but with the arrival of the Argentinian coach Jorge Sampaoli, Valencia started to receive playtime opportunities. Emelec were runners-up to champions LDU Quito, losing 2–1 on aggregate score.
Valencia scored nine league goals in 30 league matches in 2011. In November 2012, he scored five goals in five separate matches against El Nacional, LDU Loja, Técnico Universitario, and twice against Manta in both home and away matches, winning four of the five matches, only drawing against LDU Loja. This brought his goal tally to 13 goals scored in 40 league matches played, his best season yet, but for a third season in a row, the team was runner-up to league champions and club rivals Barcelona SC.
On 7 August 2013, Valencia scored his first career hat-trick against Peruvian side Sport Huancayo, in a 4–0 2013 Copa Sudamericana first round match. He finished the season as league champions with Emelec, the club's first since 2002.
On 18 January 2014, Valencia scored his first goal in a 2–1 victory against Tijuana. The following week he scored two goals to in Pachuca's first away win league match against league champions Club León. He finished the regular season as the top goal-scorer with 12 goals, scoring various braces for Pachuca. Valencia scored his first hat-trick against UNAM in a 2–4 away win to advance in the 2014 Liga MX Clausura play-offs.
West Ham United
On 29 July 2014, Premier League club West Ham United completed the transfer of Valencia, on a five-year contract for a fee estimated at £12 million. He later confirmed that he knew little about West Ham before signing and that he mainly knew of them having watched hooligan films such as the 2005 release of Green Street starring Elijah Wood. Valencia made his West Ham debut on 16 August 2014 in a 1–0 home defeat to Tottenham Hotspur coming on as an 81st-minute substitute for Carlton Cole. On 27 August, he had his penalty saved by Mark Howard as West Ham were knocked out at home in the second round of the League Cup by Sheffield United. Valencia's first goal for West Ham came in his full league debut, against Hull City on 15 September 2014, in a 2–2 draw. The 25-yard (23 m; 75 ft) strike, timed at 61 miles per hour (98 km/h), was described by journalist Henry Winter of The Daily Telegraph as an "exceptional goal". Valencia went on to score two more goals for West Ham in the following weeks, including a header in a 3–1 away win at Burnley, and a goal in a 2–2 draw with Stoke City.
His first match of his second season was on 30 July 2015 in the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round first leg at home against Astra Giurgiu; he headed West Ham into the lead but was one of two players substituted through injury in the first half as the team eventually drew 2–2. It was confirmed that he had suffered "significant" injuries to his right knee and ankle, and was ruled out for twelve weeks. Valencia scored his first league goals of the 2015–16 season with two in a 3–1 comeback win against Bournemouth on 12 January 2016, including a powerfully hit free-kick.
Loan to Everton
On 31 August 2016, Valencia signed for Everton on a season-long loan, with the option of a permanent £14.5 million move in the summer of 2017. Valencia scored his first league goal for Everton when he fired home from close range in a 3–0 win against Southampton on 2 January 2017.
Valencia initially began his career as a winger, but was converted to play as a striker by Emelec coach Gustavo Quinteros. Reinaldo Rueda started experimenting with Valencia as a striker after the untimely death of Christian Benítez. After making three appearances in the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification campaign, he scored his first international goal in a 2–2 draw against Honduras on 19 November 2013. He continued his good form in 2014, scoring in three of Ecuador's four pre-tournament friendlies. On 5 March, he scored, assisted a goal and won a penalty kick as La Tri came from 3–0 down to defeat Australia 4–3. He then scored the team's only goal in a 3–1 loss against Mexico, and gave them an early lead in a 2–2 draw with England in Miami.
In June 2014, Valencia was named in Ecuador's squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. On 15 June, he made his FIFA World Cup debut in the team's opening match against Switzerland at the Estádio Nacional Mané Garrincha in Brasília, opening the scoring with a header in a 2–1 defeat. In Ecuador's second match, Valencia scored both goals to defeat Honduras 2–1 in Curitiba. He continued his good form after the FIFA World Cup, scoring the third goal of a 4–0 victory against Bolivia. On 10 October, Valencia again netted for Ecuador in the 88th minute over the United States, which ended in a 1–1 draw. His swerving, right-footed shot took a right turn on its way towards the goal, making it impossible for goalkeeper Brad Guzan to stop.
In Ecuador's second group match at the 2015 Copa América in Chile, Valencia successfully converted a penalty to Bolivia, but the kick had to be taken again due to an opponent's infringement; the re-take was saved by Romel Quiñónez. He later scored from close range, but Ecuador lost 2–3 nonetheless. Four days later in Rancagua, Valencia set up Miller Bolaños' opener and scored Ecuador's second goal as they won 2–1 against Mexico, eliminating the opponents.
Valencia hails from Esmeraldas Province and is of Afro-Ecuadorian descent. He came from a poor family and when he arrived at Emelec, he had to sleep in rudimentary lodgings at the club's Estadio George Capwell, as he had no money to stay anywhere else and at times struggled to buy enough to eat. In October 2016, a warrant was issued for his arrest in Ecuador for unpaid child support. In August 2020, Valencia’s sister, Erci was taken hostage in San Lorenzo by an armed gang and held for 10 days before being released unharmed.
|Club||Season||League||National Cup[a]||League Cup[b]||Continental||Other||Total|
|Emelec||2010||Ecuadorian Serie A||25||1||—||—||11[c]||1||—||36||2|
|2011||Ecuadorian Serie A||30||9||—||—||5[d]||0||—||35||9|
|2012||Ecuadorian Serie A||40||13||—||—||14[d]||0||—||54||13|
|2013||Ecuadorian Serie A||35||4||—||—||11[e]||5||—||46||9|
|West Ham United||2014–15||Premier League||32||4||4||1||1||0||—||—||37||5|
|Everton (loan)||2016–17||Premier League||21||3||1||0||1||0||—||—||23||3|
|Tigres UANL||2017–18||Liga MX||37||15||1||0||—||3[g]||2||1[h]||0||42||17|
- Includes Copa MX, FA Cup
- Includes EFL Cup
- Seven appearances in Copa Libertadores, four appearances and one goal in Copa Sudamericana
- Appearances in Copa Libertadores and Copa Sudamericana
- Seven appearances in Copa Libertadores, four appearances and five goals in Copa Sudamericana
- Appearance(s) in UEFA Europa League
- Appearances in CONCACAF Champions League
- Appearance in Campeones Cup
- Two appearances in Leagues Cup, two appearances and one goal in Campeones Cup
- As of match played 9 September 2021
- As of match played 14 November 2019. Ecuador score listed first, score column indicates score after each Valencia goal.
|1||19 November 2013||BBVA Compass Stadium, Houston, United States||7||Honduras||2–2||2–2||Friendly|
|2||5 March 2014||The Den, London, England||8||Australia||3–3||4–3|
|3||31 May 2014||AT&T Stadium, Arlington, United States||9||Mexico||1–3||1–3|
|4||4 June 2014||Sun Life Stadium, Miami, United States||10||England||1–0||2–2|
|5||15 June 2014||Estádio Nacional Mané Garrincha, Brasília, Brazil||11||Switzerland||1–2||2014 FIFA World Cup|
|6||20 June 2014||Arena da Baixada, Curitiba, Brazil||12||Honduras||1–1||2–1|
|8||6 September 2014||Lockhart Stadium, Fort Lauderdale, United States||14||Bolivia||3–0||4–0||Friendly|
|9||10 October 2014||Rentschler Field, East Hartford, United States||16||United States||1–1||1–1|
|10||14 October 2014||Red Bull Arena, Harrison, United States||17||El Salvador||2–0||5–1|
|12||15 June 2015||Estadio Elías Figueroa Brander, Valparaíso, Chile||21||Bolivia||1–3||2–3||2015 Copa América|
|13||19 June 2015||Estadio El Teniente, Rancagua, Chile||22||Mexico||2–0||2–1|
|14||24 March 2016||Estadio Olímpico Atahualpa, Quito, Ecuador||23||Paraguay||1–0||2–2||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|15||8 June 2016||University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, United States||27||Peru||1–2||Copa América Centenario|
|16||12 June 2016||MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, United States||28||Haiti||1–0||4–0|
|17||11 October 2016||Estadio Hernando Siles, La Paz, Bolivia||33||Bolivia||1–2||2–2||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|19||15 November 2016||Estadio Olímpico Atahualpa, Quito, Ecuador||34||Venezuela||3–0||3–0|
|20||13 June 2017||Red Bull Arena, Harrison, United States||38||El Salvador||2–0||Friendly|
|21||5 September 2017||Estadio Olímpico Atahualpa, Quito, Ecuador||40||Peru||1–2||1–2||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|22||7 September 2018||Red Bull Arena, Harrison, United States||42||Jamaica||1–0||2–0||Friendly|
|23||11 September 2018||Toyota Park, Bridgeview, United States||43||Guatemala|
|24||12 October 2018||Jassim bin Hamad Stadium, Doha, Qatar||44||Qatar||1–2||3–4|
|26||15 November 2018||Estadio Nacional del Perú, Lima, Peru||45||Peru||2–0||2–0|
|27||20 November 2018||Estadio Rommel Fernández, Panama City, Panama||46||Panama||2–1||2–1|
|28||1 June 2019||Hard Rock Stadium, Miami, United States||47||Venezuela||1–1||1–1|
|29||21 June 2019||Itaipava Arena Fonte Nova, Salvador, Brazil||50||Chile||1–2||2019 Copa América|
|30||14 November 2019||Estadio Reales Tamarindos, Portoviejo, Ecuador||53||Trinidad and Tobago||2–0||3–0||Friendly|
- Serie A Best Player: 2013
- Copa Sudamericana top scorer: 2013
- Liga MX top scorer: Clausura 2014
- Liga MX Best XI: Apertura 2017
- CONCACAF Champions League Golden Boot: 2019
- CONCACAF Champions League Team of the Tournament: 2019
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