Zárate playing for West Ham United in 2015
|Full name||Mauro Matías Zárate|
|Date of birth||13 March 1987|
|Place of birth||Haedo, Argentina|
|Height||1.76 m (5 ft 9 in)|
|Playing position||Forward / Attacking midfielder|
|2008||→ Birmingham City (loan)||14||(4)|
|2008–2009||→ Lazio (loan)||36||(13)|
|2011–2012||→ Inter Milan (loan)||22||(2)|
|2014–2016||West Ham United||22||(5)|
|2015||→ Queens Park Rangers (loan)||4||(0)|
|2017||→ Al-Nasr (loan)||8||(3)|
|2018||→ Vélez Sarsfield (loan)||13||(7)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 17 november 2018|
Zárate started his career with Vélez Sarsfield in his native country, playing three years for the team and winning the Primera División title in the 2005 Clausura tournament. He later signed for Qatari side Al-Sadd in 2007, where he played only six months before transferring on loan to Birmingham City in England. However, after Birmingham's relegation, Zárate was loaned out again, this time to Lazio in Italy, where he won the Coppa Italia. His move to Lazio was then made permanent for a fee of around €20 million, with a €60 million buy-out clause. After a loan at Inter Milan and a brief return to Vélez Sarsfield, he joined West Ham United in 2014, spending the second half of his first season on loan at Queens Park Rangers. In January 2016, Zárate joined Italian club Fiorentina. A year later, he joined Watford of the English Premier League on a two-and-a-half-year, £2.3 million deal.
- 1 Club career
- 1.1 Vélez Sarsfield
- 1.2 Al-Sadd
- 1.3 Lazio
- 1.4 Vélez Sarsfield return
- 1.5 West Ham United
- 1.6 Fiorentina
- 1.7 Watford
- 1.8 Boca Juniors
- 2 International career
- 3 Personal life
- 4 Career statistics
- 5 Honours
- 6 Notes
- 7 References
- 8 External links
Zárate began his club football career at Vélez Sarsfield where he had played since childhood. At age 17, considered too strong for the youth category, he was promoted to the first team with which he made his full debut on 21 April 2004 against Arsenal de Sarandí. He shared the top-scorer award for the Apertura 2006 with Rodrigo Palacio (Boca Juniors) with 12 goals each.
On 18 June 2007, Zárate signed a two-year deal with Al-Sadd in the Qatari League for a fee reported by Clarín at $22 million. However, he did not remain in Qatar long, playing just six league matches and scoring four goals, before heading on loan to English Premier League side Birmingham City.
Birmingham City (loan)
On 21 January 2008, Zárate joined Premier League side Birmingham City on loan until the end of the 2007–08 season, with a view to a permanent deal. He made his debut for the club in the 2–0 defeat at Sunderland on 29 January as a 66th-minute substitute for Cameron Jerome, and made his first start on 12 March against Portsmouth. He scored his first goal for the club against Reading on 22 March, followed by a brace in their next match against Manchester City in a 3–1 win, and a free-kick that earned a draw against Everton on 12 April. After a total of 4 goals in 14 matches, Zárate left the club at the end of his loan spell, their relegation from the Premier League meaning no extension to the loan would be considered.
Zárate completed a move to Italian Serie A club Lazio on 5 July 2008. He joined initially on loan, for €2.4 million, with Lazio having an option to make the deal permanent, and following a successful medical, he was presented to the media a few days later.
Zárate immediately endeared himself to the Lazio faithful, scoring twice in his Serie A debut against Cagliari and dedicating the second to the Lazio supporters. He also scored on his home debut, with a left-footed strike from outside the penalty area against Sampdoria. This rich goalscoring form continued with Zárate scoring once against Milan at the San Siro, twice against Torino and another against Siena. However, by mid-season, Zárate hit a dip in form and found himself being substituted for captain Tommaso Rocchi, who was returning to form following serious injury.
On 13 May, Zárate won the Coppa Italia with Lazio, scoring a fourth-minute goal in the 1–1 draw with Sampdoria in the final, as well as a penalty in the victorious shootout. After the season ended, his move to Lazio was made permanent for a fee of approximately €20 million, with a €60 million buy-out clause included in the contract. The Italian Football Federation (FIGC) later fined Lazio and suspended club president Claudio Lotito over financial irregularities around the transfer.[nb 1]
Zárate caused controversy when he was photographed apparently giving a fascist salute while watching Lazio lose to Bari in March 2010 among a group of fans, though his spokesman claimed afterwards the player "did not realise the significance of his gesture" and did not know who Hitler or Mussolini were.
In 2010, Zárate's transfer was involved in another controversy for solidarity contribution.[nb 2]
Inter Milan (loan)
On 31 August 2011, Zárate completed a loan deal from Lazio to Inter Milan with a view to a permanent transfer. On 27 September 2011, he scored a 79th-minute winner, his first goal for the club, in an away match against CSKA Moscow in the group stage of the 2011–12 UEFA Champions League. His first Serie A goal for Inter did not come until 1 April 2012, when he scored their fourth goal, a "spectacular curling right-footed shot" in a 5–4 win against Genoa. He finished the 2011–12 season with 3 goals from 29 appearances in all competitions.
Zárate returned to Lazio for the 2012–13 season. However, he made only five appearances, four in the UEFA Europe League and one in Serie A, all without scoring, and he did not play for the club after November 2012. In March 2013, he was fined €500,000 by Lazio – he had requested time-off to fly home to Argentina to receive treatment for a skin condition, but instead, he flew with his family on a holiday in the Maldives.
Vélez Sarsfield return
In July 2013, Zárate returned to his first club, Vélez Sarsfield, without terminating his contract with Lazio. Consequently, on 2 July 2015, FIFA ruled Lazio were eligible to receive €5.26 million in compensation, which Vélez and Zárate were jointly liable. In January 2014, Zárate was a member of the side which won the 2013 Supercopa Argentina, beating Arsenal de Sarandí 1–0 in the final. He finished the season as top scorer in Primera División Torneo Final with 13 goals in 19 matches.
West Ham United
On 28 May 2014, Zárate signed a three-year contract with Premier League club West Ham United to take effect when the international transfer window opened in June. On 23 August, he scored on his competitive debut for the club, opening a 3–1 win away to Crystal Palace with a 20-yard volley.
Queens Park Rangers (loan)
On 6 January 2015, Zárate was loaned to fellow Premier League club Queens Park Rangers until the end of the season, having scored two goals in eight matches for West Ham. Having made four appearances for QPR without scoring, in May 2015, Zárate reacted angrily to being omitted from the squad for a match against Liverpool. His actions were deemed bad enough by the club that he was ordered to make his own way back to London and was subsequently banned and fined two weeks' wages. Such was the length of the ban, coinciding with the end of the season, this effectively ended his QPR career.
West Ham United return
Zárate featured in West Ham's 2015–16 UEFA Europa League qualifying campaign in pre-season, scoring his first goal of the season in a 2–2 draw at the Boleyn Ground against Romanian club Astra Giurgiu. West Ham eventually lost the tie 3–4 after a narrow second leg defeat.
Zárate scored from outside the penalty area to conclude West Ham's 2–0 win over Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium in their opening match game of the 2015–16 Premier League season. His deflected strike could not save West Ham from third round elimination in the 2015–16 League Cup, Leicester City prevailing 2–1 after extra time. He continued his good early season scoring form as he scored the opening goal in the Hammers' 2–1 victory over Chelsea on 24 October, following this up with a free-kick in a televised match against West Bromwich Albion on 29 November, a 1–1 draw.
On 21 January 2016, Zárate completed a move to Italian club Fiorentina for an undisclosed fee, reported by Sky Sports to be £1.6 million. He made his debut for La Viola ten days later, starting in their goalless draw at Genoa. On 3 February, he scored his first goal for the team, the last-minute winner in a 2–1 victory over Carpi at the Stadio Artemio Franchi. However, 11 days later, he was sent off in a win by the same score against Inter for grabbing at Jeison Murillo; he subsequently received a three-match ban.
On 25 January 2017, Zárate joined Premier League side Watford on a two-and-a-half-year deal. On 25 February, he won a penalty in a game against his former club West Ham, but later injured his cruciate ligament after twisting his knee awkwardly. Zárate needed nine minutes of medical attention and would likely miss the rest of the season.
On 2 October 2017, Zárate joined United Arab Emirati club Al-Nasr in a loan deal slated to run until the end of the 2017–18 season. After failing to find the net in his first four games, he then scored three goals in as many games for the UAE Pro-League club.
Vélez Sarsfield (loan)
In January 2018, after eight appearances for Al-Nasr, it was announced that Zárate had rejoined Vélez Sarsfield on loan, for his third spell at the club where he started his career.
In 2014, Zárate opted to play international football for Chile after not being named in the latest Argentina squad chosen by manager Gerardo Martino. He is eligible for the country through his father. However, in 2015, Zárate expressly stated he is Argentine and has always dreamt of playing for Argentina.
Zárate was born in Haedo, Buenos Aires, to a footballing family. His father Sergio is a Chilean former professional footballer who played for Independiente de Avellaneda. His mother, Catalina Riga, has Italian origins from Catanzaro in southern Italy. His grandfather Juvenal was Chilean and also a footballer.
- As of match played 24 October 2018
|Vélez Sarsfield||2003–04||Primera División||5||1||0||0||0||0||5||1|
|Al Saad||2007||Qatar Stars League||6||4||0||0||0||0||6||4|
|Birmingham City (loan)||2007–08||Premier League||14||4||0||0||0||0||14||4|
|Lazio (loan)||2008–09||Serie A||36||13||5||3||0||0||41||16|
|Inter Milan (loan)||2011–12||Serie A||22||2||2||0||7||1||31||3|
|Vélez Sarsfield||2013–14||Primera División||28||18||1||0||7||1||36||19|
|West Ham United||2014–15||Premier League||7||2||1||0||0||0||8||2|
|Queens Park Rangers (loan)||2014–15||Premier League||4||0||0||0||0||0||4||0|
|Al Nasr (loan)||2017–18||Arabian Gulf League||8||3||5||0||0||0||13||3|
|Vélez Sarsfield||2017–18||Primera División||13||8||0||0||0||0||13||8|
|Boca Juniors||2018–19||Primera División||8||1||3||0||5||3||16||4|
- The Italian Football Federation (FIGC) later revealed Lazio had to pay an additional €14.95 million to a agent company, Pluriel Limited, whose sole director was Riccardo Petrucchi, in five-year instalments (hidden in agent commission, (Italian: Costi per intermediazione tesserati)), which Zárate's salary was just €7.2 million in net in total in his five-year contract. The FIGC ruled that president Claudio Lotito and Lazio violated the third parties ownership rule in relation to both Zárate and Julio Cruz. The FIGC suspended Lotito for ten months and fined Lazio €80,000.
- In July 2010, FIFA's Dispute Resolution Chamber passed a decision that ordered Lazio to pay an additional solidarity contribution of €726,936 owed to Vélez Sarsfield. Lazio only paid €73,442.77 corresponding to the €2.4 million loan fee. They rejected Lazio's claim that the club had paid €20M to Zárate, who had then paid Al-Sadd to terminate his contract in April 2009, so that he was signed as a free agent and the €20 million was not a transfer fee. In February 2011, Lazio appealed, but the appeal was dismissed.
- "Premier League clubs publish retained lists". Premier League. 9 June 2017. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
- Birth registered on 18 March 1987, cfr. Allenamenti speciali per Zarate, lalaziosiamonoi.it
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- "Estudiantes make up for lost time". FIFA. 15 December 2006. Retrieved 21 January 2008.
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Costi per Acquisizione temporanea prestazioni calciatori
- "Lazio secure Zarate in loan deal". BBC Sport. 5 July 2008. Retrieved 6 July 2008.
- "Al-Sadd okay Zarate loan deal to Lazio". Al Sadd SC. 30 June 2008. Archived from the original on 16 September 2008. Retrieved 11 July 2008.
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- Zarate enjoys dream debut | West Ham United Archived 25 August 2014 at the Wayback Machine.
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- Johnson, Simon (12 May 2015). "Chelsea close to wrapping up £2m deal for Rob Green as Petr Cech replacement". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
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- "Zárate Signs For Hornets". Watford F.C. 25 January 2017. Retrieved 25 January 2017.
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