Juanlu (footballer, born 1980)
Juanlu in action for Levante in 2011
|Full name||Juan Luis Gómez López|
|Date of birth||8 May 1980|
|Place of birth||Málaga, Spain|
|Height||1.72 m (5 ft 7 1⁄2 in)|
|2004||→ Alicante (loan)||15||(1)|
|2006||→ Albacete (loan)||17||(3)|
|2006–2007||→ Osasuna (loan)||18||(1)|
|2007–2008||→ Córdoba (loan)||30||(5)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
In a professional career that spanned 14 seasons, he amassed La Liga totals of 122 games and 14 goals during seven seasons, representing in the competition Numancia, Betis, Osasuna and Levante. He added 136/25 in Segunda División.
Born in Málaga, Juanlu began his career at amateurs CD Don Benito and Mármol Macael CD before moving to neighbouring UD Almería in Segunda División, being first-choice in his first season but only a backup – seven games, none complete – in his second.
In the 2004–05 campaign, Juanlu made his La Liga debuts, playing in 27 league matches for CD Numancia (two goals, scoring against Real Betis in the league opener on 28 August, in a 1–1 home draw) before moving to Betis upon Numancia's relegation.
During his time at the Verdiblancos, Juanlu was loaned to Albacete Balompié and CA Osasuna. Unhappy at his lack of first team opportunities at the Seville club, he showed satisfaction upon his move to Navarre: "I am happy because this deal is good for everyone, especially for me because I've joined a team that's in the Champions League qualifying round." He was relatively used in the league, and added six appearances with two goals in the UEFA Cup, including the only in the second leg of the quarter-finals against Bayer 04 Leverkusen.
In July 2007, again on loan, Juanlu joined another second division side, Córdoba CF, netting five goals during the season as they barely avoided relegation. He returned to Betis in July 2008, and was told to look for a new club.
After one year out of football, training with Betis but not registered, Juanlu broke ties with Betis on 12 June 2009, moving to Levante UD on a one-year deal on 28 July. In his first season, the veteran enjoyed his best professional year – scoring for the first time in double digits – as the Valencian Community team returned to the top division after two years.
Juanlu appeared in 28 games in 2010–11 as Levante retained its league status, netting three goals. On 23 October 2011 he scored a brace in a 3–0 away win against Villarreal CF, with his team leading the league early into the campaign; in late December, however, whilst playing against Deportivo de La Coruña for the Copa del Rey, he suffered fibula and ankle ligament fracture after a challenge by Borja, going on to miss three months of action.
Juanlu scored twice in 2012–13, in another escape from relegation. One of those goals came on 26 May 2013 at the San Mamés Stadium in a 1–0 win over Athletic Bilbao, in what was the last goal ever in the ground. Late into the season he, alongside Sergio Ballesteros and Gustavo Munúa, was accused by teammate José Barkero of lack of commitment during a 0–4 home loss against Deportivo, which led to several match-fixing allegations.
On 27 August 2013, aged 33, Juanlu moved abroad for the first time in his career, joining compatriot Jonan García at newly promoted Greek club Kalloni FC. After being sparingly used he returned to Spain, joining Córdoba CF on 21 January of the following year. He appeared in 16 matches during the campaign, which ended in top division promotion after a 42-year absence.
- Double signing for Betis; UEFA.com, 18 July 2005
- Juanlu joins Osasuna adventure; UEFA.com, 4 August 2006
- Juanlu makes sure for Osasuna; UEFA.com, 12 April 2007
- Juanlu firma por el Levante UD para la próxima temporada (Juanlu signs with Levante UD for the next season) Archived 31 July 2009 at the Wayback Machine.; Levante UD, 28 July 2009 (in Spanish)
- Deportivo on a roll; ESPN Soccernet, 7 November 2010
- Mallorca wobble under pressure; ESPN Soccernet, 13 March 2011
- Levante run continues; ESPN Soccernet, 17 April 2011
- Levante flying high after victory; ESPN Soccernet, 23 October 2011
- Levante la Copa por un 2011 de ensueño (Lift (Levante in Spanish) the Cup for an unforgettable 2011); Marca, 21 December 2011 (in Spanish)
- Juanlu, operado de la fractura de peroné y del ligamento del tobillo (Juanlu had surgery to fibula and knee ligament fracture); Marca, 23 December 2011 (in Spanish)
- Juanlu nets winner; ESPN FC, 26 May 2013
- "Incendio en el vestuario del Levante por las acusaciones de amaño entre jugadores" [Fire in Levante locker room for match-fixing accusations between players] (in Spanish). Libertad Digital. 1 May 2013. Retrieved 5 June 2013.
- "Levante thrown into doubt". Football España. 6 May 2013. Retrieved 5 June 2013.
- Juanlu Gómez ficha por el Kalloni de la Superliga griega (Juanlu Gómez signs for Superleague Greece's Kalloni); Diario AS, 27 August 2013 (in Spanish)
- Juanlu Gómez nuevo jugador del Córdoba C.F. (Juanlu Gómez new player of Córdoba C.F.) Archived 8 August 2014 at the Wayback Machine.; Córdoba CF, 21 January 2014 (in Spanish)