Nabil El Zhar

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Nabil El Zhar
El Zhar.JPG
El Zhar playing for Liverpool in 2009
Personal information
Full name Nabil El Zhar
Date of birth (1986-08-27) 27 August 1986 (age 29)
Place of birth Alès, France
Height 1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)
Playing position Winger
Club information
Current team
Las Palmas
Number 25
Youth career
1996–1999 Alès
1999–2004 Nîmes
2004–2006 Saint-Étienne
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2006–2011 Liverpool 21 (2)
2010–2011 PAOK (loan) 24 (2)
2011–2015 Levante 94 (7)
2015– Las Palmas 6 (0)
National team
2005 France U21 8 (1)
2008– Morocco 24 (3)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 19 October 2015.
† Appearances (goals)

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 1 January 2014

Nabil El Zhar (Arabic: نبيل الزهر‎; born 27 August 1986) is a Moroccan footballer who plays for Spanish club UD Las Palmas as a right winger.

He has been a full international for Morocco since 2008.

Club career and personal life[edit]

El Zhar began his football career with OAC Alès, a local youth team. From there he moved to Nîmes Olympique, then switched again to AS Saint-Étienne.


He signed for Liverpool in October 2006 and made his debut for their reserve team against Newcastle in a reserves match on 3 October 2006.[1] He scored his first goal, from the penalty spot, in a reserve 'mini-derby' against Everton on 10 October 2006.

El Zhar made his first team debut on 29 November 2006, coming on as a substitute against Portsmouth. He went on to make two more appearances in the 2006–07 season.[1]

He made his first Liverpool start in a League Cup tie against Cardiff on 31 October 2007, in which he scored his first goal for the club.[2] El Zhar was moved from the number 42 shirt to the number 31 shirt for the start of the 2008–09 campaign.[3]

El Zhar became part of the regular first-team squad in the 2008–09 season appearing in a 1–0 win against Sunderland and making his first assist on 18 October 2008, coming on for Andrea Dossena with Liverpool 1–2 down against Wigan Athletic. He set up Albert Riera for the equaliser and the game finished 3–2 to Liverpool. On 27 February 2009, He made his first league start for Liverpool against Middlesbrough in which Liverpool lost 2–0. In this season El Zhar was affected by injuries restricting him to just a handful of outings as a substitute, usually coming off the bench to stretch opposition defences in the closing stages of a game.

On 11 July 2009, he signed a new contract extension to his current Liverpool contract that would have kept him at Anfield until 2012.[4]

PAOK (loan)[edit]

On 31 August 2010, El Zhar completed a loan switch to Greek side P.A.O.K. F.C. and was handed the number 7 shirt on his arrival. The deal expired on 3 June 2011. El Zhar made his debut for the club on 16 September in a 1–1 UEFA Europa League group game against Club Brugge. He subsequently played in PAOK's last 5 group games;the 1–0 win against Dinamo Zagreb, the 1–0 defeat to Villarreal, the 1–0 win against Villareal, the 1–1 draw with FC Bruges and the 1–0 win against Dinamo Zagreb. He later returned to Liverpool. El Zhar was popular among the fans of PAOK, however the deal was never made permanent.


On 18 August 2011, Liverpool announced that El Zhar had been released from his contract[5] and that he was expected to complete a move to Spanish side Levante UD where he will sign a contract that will keep him at Estadio Ciudad de Valencia for 2 years.[6] He made his La Liga debut ten days later, coming on as a substitute for Pedro López in a 1–1 away draw against Getafe CF.

El Zhar scored his first goal in the main category of Spanish football on 19 August 2012, netting the first in a 1–1 home draw against Atlético Madrid. On 26 August 2015, he rescinded his contract with the Granotes.[7]

Las Palmas[edit]

Hours after rescinding with Levante, El Zhar signed a two-year deal with UD Las Palmas, newly-promoted to the top tier.[8]

International career[edit]

Although born in Alès, France, El Zhar chose to play internationally for the country of his parents, Morocco. However, he did represent France at youth level. El Zhar played in the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship, and Morocco got to the semi-finals, where they were defeated 3–0 by Nigeria. Morocco ended the tournament in fourth place after a 2–1 loss to Brazil.[9]

On 26 March 2008, El Zhar scored for Morocco in a 4–1 away win against Belgium in his first international appearance.


  1. ^ a b Profile Nabil El Zhar. Liverpool F.C. Retrieved on 2009-02-05.
  2. ^ "Liverpool 2–1 Cardiff". BBC. 31 October 2007. Retrieved 4 September 2009. 
  3. ^ Rice, Jimmy (6 August 2008). "TRIO HANDED FIRST-TEAM SQUAD NUMBERS". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 2008-08-06. 
  4. ^ "EL ZHAR SIGNS CONTRACT EXTENSION". 11 July 2009. Retrieved 2009-07-11. 
  5. ^ "Zhar to leave Reds". Liverpool F.C. 18 August 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-18. 
  6. ^ "EL LEVANTE FICHA A EL ZHAR POR DOS TEMPORADAS". 18 August 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-18. 
  7. ^ "Nabil El Zhar deja de ser jugador del Levante UD" [Nabil El Zhar leaves Levante UD] (in Spanish). Levante's official wbesite. 26 August 2015. Retrieved 27 August 2015. 
  8. ^ "La UD Las Palmas ficha al delantero internacional marroquí Nabil El Zhar" [Las Palmas signs Moroccan international footballer Nabil El Zhar] (in Spanish). Las Palmas' official website. 26 August 2015. Retrieved 27 August 2015. 
  9. ^ "FIFA World Youth Championship – Fourteen nuggets in Netherlands". FIFA. Archived from the original on 4 September 2006. Retrieved 2006-10-05. 

External links[edit]