Pablo Gabriel García

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Pablo García
Pablo Garcia als Co-Trainer von PAOK 2014.jpg
García with PAOK in 2014
Personal information
Full name Pablo Gabriel García Pérez
Date of birth (1977-05-11) 11 May 1977 (age 42)
Place of birth Pando, Uruguay
Height 1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)
Playing position Defensive midfielder
Club information
Current team
PAOK (youth)
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1996–1997 Montevideo Wanderers 35 (1)
1997–2000 Atlético Madrid B 38 (3)
1997Peñarol (loan) 9 (0)
2000–2002 Milan 5 (0)
2002Venezia (loan) 14 (0)
2002–2005 Osasuna 78 (6)
2005–2008 Real Madrid 22 (0)
2006–2007Celta (loan) 14 (0)
2007–2008Murcia (loan) 21 (0)
2008–2013 PAOK 109 (5)
2014 Skoda Xanthi 3 (0)
Total 348 (15)
National team
1997–2007 Uruguay 66 (2)
Teams managed
2015–2016 PAOK (assistant youth)
2016– PAOK (youth)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Pablo Gabriel García Pérez (American Spanish: [ˈpaβlo ɣaˈβɾjel ɣaɾˈsi.a ˈpeɾes];[a] born 11 May 1977) is a Uruguayan retired footballer who played as a defensive midfielder.

A player of physical approach to the game (which earned him a reputation for being a dirty player), his nickname is Canario (canary), referring to his birthplace. He spent most of his professional career in La Liga, amassing 135 appearances in six years in representation of four teams, but also played several seasons in Greece with PAOK.

An Uruguayan international for one full decade, García appeared for the nation at the 2002 World Cup and two Copa América tournaments.

Club career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Born in Pando, Canelones Department, García started his career in Montevideo Wanderers FC. After a six-month spell at C.A. Peñarol he was transferred to Atlético Madrid but, however, would never make it past their reserves, being subsequently transferred to Italian giants A.C. Milan after two years.

After just five Serie A appearances during the 2000–01 season, García was loaned to fellow league club Venezia A.C. in January 2002. In spite of their relegation, he had overall good performances.


Moving to CA Osasuna for the 2002–03 campaign,[1] García played intense football throughout three seasons in Navarre. In his first match, a 2–2 La Liga draw at Villarreal CF on 1 September 2002, he collected a booking and scored the match's final goal.[2]

In the final of the 2005 Copa del Rey García, already an essential midfield element for Osasuna, received a straight red card after a dangerous challenge on Real Betis' Joaquín, in an eventual 1–2 extra time loss.[3] However, he had already caught the eye of Real Madrid which signed the player to a three-year contract, with compatriot Carlos Diogo also being purchased.[4]

After having received 17 yellow (season-most) and one red cards during 2004–05 (the Cup final notwithstanding),[5] García made his Real Madrid official debut on 10 September 2005, playing 11 minutes in a 2–3 home loss to Celta de Vigo.[6] Eventually, he won the battle for the team's first-choice holding midfielder over Thomas Gravesen, although none were an undisputed starter.[7][8]

After helping Madrid to a runner-up place in the 2005–06 season, García was deemed surplus to requirements by new boss Fabio Capello and, on 29 August 2006, he signed a one-year loan contract with Celta.[9] After an uneventful personal campaign where he was injured for most of the year[10][11] and his club was also relegated, he returned to Real Madrid in July 2007 to be loaned immediately again, this time to newly promoted Real Murcia.[12]


García in action for PAOK in 2010

After another relegation, García was released by Real Madrid on 10 July 2008[13] and, on the 23rd, agreed to join PAOK FC in Greece. He quickly became a fan favorite, not as much for his defensive abilities rather than his hot temper; managing to receive three red cards in his first six games, and also starring in an infamous incident with Olympiacos F.C. player Diogo Luís Santo during a derby. After being hit in the face by Diogo's elbow in a confrontation during a set piece, García retaliated with a punch to the Brazilian's belly; both actions surprisingly eluded the referee's attention, but the Uruguayan eventually received a three-match ban.

García's second season was much better overall, as PAOK only conceded 16 goals in 30 matches, finishing second in the table, with him forming a stable midfield partnership with Spaniard Vitolo. Additionally, he renewed his link to the club until 2012, even agreeing to a reduction in his salary, in line with the club's stagnant finances.

On 23 May 2012, it was announced that 35-year-old García renewed his contract with the Thessaloniki outfit for one more year.[14] On 20 March of the following year, he was mutually released from contract after several incidents with coach Giorgos Donis.

García returned to PAOK on 4 June 2013 at the request of major shareholder Ivan Savvidis, penning a one-year deal. In the following winter transfer window, however, he left for fellow league side Skoda Xanthi FC, retiring after a couple of months at the age of 37.

On 24 May 2015, García returned to PAOK in an unspecified position.[15] The following month, the club's sporting director Frank Arnesen announced that the former would start his managerial career as an assistant in the under-17 team.[16]

International career[edit]

A full Uruguayan international since 13 December 1997, in a King Fahd Cup match against United Arab Emirates, García quickly developed into a mainstay for the national team,[17] and would appear at the 1999 Copa América for a total of 66 caps.[18] He played all 270 minutes in the country's participation in the 2002 FIFA World Cup, although he was not able to help it qualify for the 2006 edition, after losing a penalty shootout to Australia on 16 November 2005.

García scored a powerful finesse shot from outside the box against Venezuela in the 2007 Copa América quarter-finals,[19] but also missed a decisive penalty against Brazil in the next round.[20]







  • MVP 2011–12


  1. ^ In isolation, Gabriel and García are pronounced [ɡaˈβɾjel] and [ɡaɾˈsi.a] respectively.


  1. ^ "Osasuna snap up Uruguayan". UEFA. 23 August 2002. Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  2. ^ "Se relajó y le empataron" [They relaxed and allowed draw] (in Spanish). ESPN Deportes. 1 September 2002. Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  3. ^ a b "Dani delivers for Betis". UEFA. 12 June 2005. Retrieved 3 October 2015.
  4. ^ Uruguayan pair make Madrid move; UEFA, 1 July 2005
  5. ^ Gómez, Javi; Bergasa, Javier (2 May 2018). "Las amarillas de Mérida" [Mérida's yellows] (in Spanish). Noticias de Navarra. Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  6. ^ Segurola, Santiago (11 September 2005). "Un marciano con silbato" [A Marcian with a whistle]. El País (in Spanish). Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  7. ^ Recalde, Mikel (16 September 2005). "Pablo García desplaza a Gravesen del cuadrado" [Pablo García takes Gravesen's place in square]. Diario AS (in Spanish). Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  8. ^ Colino, Carmen (8 February 2006). "Gravesen empieza a ser un problema en el Madrid" [Gravesen is starting to be a problem at Madrid]. Diario AS (in Spanish). Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  9. ^ Pablo García joins Celta expedition; UEFA, 29 August 2006
  10. ^ "El Celta sentencia ante un Nàstic débil en defensa" [Celta finish it against defensively weak Nàstic]. El Mundo (in Spanish). 10 September 2006. Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  11. ^ Jiménez, Carlos (23 December 2006). "Pablo García podría dejar el Celta en el mes de enero" [Pablo García might leave Celta in the month of January]. Diario AS (in Spanish). Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  12. ^ "El Real Madrid cede al uruguayo Pablo García al Murcia" [Real Madrid loan Uruguayan Pablo García to Murcia]. Marca (in Spanish). 17 July 2007. Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  13. ^ "Real announce Garcia departure". FIFA. 10 July 2008. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
  14. ^ "Επέκταση συμβολαίου με τον Pablo Garcia" (in Greek). PAOK FC. 23 May 2012. Archived from the original on 26 May 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2012.
  15. ^ Και ο Πάμπλο Γκαρσία στην οικογένεια του ΠΑΟΚ! [Pablo Garcia in PAOK's family!] (in Greek). PAOK FC. 24 May 2015. Retrieved 26 June 2015.
  16. ^ Προπονητής ο Πάμπλο [Coach Pablo] (in Greek). PAOK 24. 25 June 2015. Retrieved 26 June 2015.
  17. ^ Uruguay – Record international players; at RSSSF
  18. ^ Pablo Garcia – International Appearances; at RSSSF
  19. ^ "¿Otra vez a amargar al dueño de casa?" [Out to get hosts again?] (in Spanish). Ovación Digital. 21 June 2015. Retrieved 20 January 2017.
  20. ^ "Brazil reach Copa America final". BBC Sport. 11 July 2007. Retrieved 7 June 2017.

External links[edit]