Pablo Gabriel García

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Pablo García
García in action with PAOK in 2010
Personal information
Full name Pablo Gabriel García Pérez
Date of birth (1977-05-11) 11 May 1977 (age 38)
Place of birth Pando, Uruguay
Height 1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)
Playing position Defensive midfielder
Club information
Current team
PAOK (U17 Assistant Manager)
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1996–1997 Montevideo Wanderers 35 (1)
1997–2000 Atlético Madrid B 38 (3)
1997 Peñarol (loan) 9 (0)
2000–2002 Milan 5 (0)
2002 Venezia (loan) 14 (0)
2002–2005 Osasuna 78 (6)
2005–2008 Real Madrid 22 (0)
2006–2007 Celta (loan) 14 (0)
2007–2008 Murcia (loan) 21 (0)
2008–2013 PAOK 93 (4)
2014 Skoda Xanthi 3 (0)
Total 332 (14)
National team
1997–2007 Uruguay 66 (2)
Teams managed
2015– PAOK (U17 Assistant Manager)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

† Appearances (Goals).
This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is García and the second or maternal family name is Pérez.

Pablo Gabriel García Pérez (born 11 May 1977) is a Uruguayan football manager and former player who played as a defensive midfielder. He is currently the assistant manager of PAOK FC U17 team.

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, representing four different teams, but also played several seasons in Greece with PAOK.

An Uruguayan international for one full decade, García represented 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 de Madrid but, however, would never make it past its B-side, being subsequently transferred to Italian giants A.C. Milan after two seasons.

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


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

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

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

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.[3] After an uneventful personal campaign where he was injured for most of the year 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.


After another relegation, García was released by Real Madrid on 10 July 2008[4] 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 Luis 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.[5] 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.

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,[6] and would appear at the 1999 Copa América for a total of 66 caps.[7]

He played all 270 minutes in the country's participation in the 2002 FIFA World Cup, although he was not able to help his country 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 quarterfinals, but also missed a decisive penalty against Brazil in the semis, meaning the Charrúas would not play the tournament's final match.

Managerial Career[edit]

After his retirement, García began a managerial career. On 24 May 2015, it was announced that García would join PAOK in an unspecified position.[8] Finally, on 25 June 2015, the club's Sporting Director Frank Arnesen announced that Garcia would start his managerial career as an assistant manager in the U17 team.[9]






  • MVP 2011–12


External links[edit]