Kjær with Sevilla in 2017
|Full name||Simon Thorup Kjær|
|Date of birth||26 March 1989|
|Place of birth||Horsens, Denmark|
|Height||1.91 m (6 ft 3 in)|
|Playing position||Centre back|
|2011–2012||→ Roma (loan)||22||(0)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 10:43, 15 March 2019 (UTC)|
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 07:10, 2 July 2018 (UTC)
He was named 2007 Danish under-19 talent of the year and 2009 Danish Talent of the Year. Kjær has played over 70 games for Denmark, including at the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the UEFA Euro 2012 and the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
Born in Horsens, Kjær started playing football with small-time club Lund IF near Horsens, before moving to the youth team of Danish Superliga club FC Midtjylland in 2004. He was named the best player of a French youth tournament in April 2006, and Midtjylland subsequently rejected offers from Lille OSC for Kjær and Jesper Juelsgård. He made his senior debut for Midtjylland in the Viasat Cup training matches in June 2006, and was promoted to the first team squad in January 2007. He had a successful trial with Real Madrid in August 2007, but their transfer offer was refused by FC Midtjylland. He signed a five-year contract with Midtjylland instead in September 2007.
He made his Superliga debut on 30 September 2007, in the 2–0 victory against AGF, and played four games in the first half of the Danish Superliga 2007–08 season. By October 2007, Kjær had attracted the likes of Premier League clubs Middlesbrough and Chelsea. In February 2008, Kjær signed a five-year contract with Italian club Palermo, effective from the summer 2008, earning Midtjylland a €4 million transfer fee. He played all 15 games in the second half of the Superliga season, forming a defensive partnership with Magnus Troest.
Kjær confirmed his reputation as a first team regular in the 2009–10 season, and formed a strong defensive partnership with fellow centre-back Cesare Bovo. In September 2009, he signed an improved contract with the Sicilian club. He was named 2009 Danish Talent of the Year in November 2009, beating Arsenal's Nicklas Bendtner and Ajax's Christian Eriksen after his successful first season in Palermo. In January 2010, he was also named as Danish Footballer of the Year for 2009. The next day, he celebrated with a goal against Cagliari that decided the match for Palermo as the match ended 2–1. He scored twice during the season, and played a total 35 Serie A games.
On 30 June 2010, Wolfsburg confirmed they had opened talks with Kjær. Wolfsburg had beaten off competition from various European heavyweights to sign Kjær. On 8 July 2010, Wolfsburg signed Kjær for an undisclosed fee believed to be in excess of £10million. Following his move to Wolfsburg, Kjær said: "The transfer means I have the chance to play for a top club, I think this is the right step for me. We have a strong team that can challenge at the top of the Bundesliga. First, I need to secure a regular place." The deal made Kjær the most expensive Danish footballer in the world. Making the shift from Serie A football to the Bundesliga meant that Kjær would become one of the best paid Danish footballers with an annual salary of around €3 million. The move from Serie A to the Bundesliga and VfL Wolfsburg was not only economically justifiable for the young Danish defender. Both national coach Morten Olsen and Kjær himself said after the shift that this is both sporty and developmentally was a step in the right direction for him.
After a poor start to the season for Wolfsburg, with varying results and unmet expectations; Kjær scored his first goal for Wolfsburg in a 2–0 win over Stuttgart when he headed the ball in over the line after a corner kick. Several statisticians have noted that the ball took a deflection, however the goal was eventually credited to Edin Džeko. Despite much criticism from the media for his poor performances, Kjær played in the starting lineup in all 17 Bundesliga matches in the autumn 2010 season. After having formed a successful partnership with Italy international Andrea Barzagli in Wolfsburg's central defence, Kjær would then feature alongside German international Arne Friedrich. In his 19th appearance in the league, Kjær scored his first Bundesliga goal for the club. Kjær was match winner in the 0–1 away game against Mainz 05, with a headed goal in the 83rd minute, which Kjær secured the first Wolfsburg victory in eight matches – after seven drawn games in a row.
Following Steve McClaren's sacking (who brought him to the club) due to further poor results in February 2011, Felix Magath returned to Wolfsburg (the manager guided the club to win their first Bundesliga title). Magath made a comment on criticising the 'poor condition' of the players he inherited (including Kjær) from McClaren. During the English coach had Kjær started 20 out of 21 Bundesliga matches, after having been out with an injury in round 20 against Dortmund. In connection with the dismissal declared affection in public, that he was sorry for firing, and that he had been happy to work with Steve McClaren. In his first season, Kjær made 32 appearances and scored two goals.
In his second season at Wolfsburg, Kjær made three appearances for Wolfsburg. Kjær's time at Wolfsburg has been met by frustration, as the club narrowly avoided the drop last season and he has come under fire for some lacklustre displays.
Loan to Roma
In the summer transfer window 2011, Kjær revealed that head coach Magath told him that he'll be allowed to leave this summer and reported that he had fallen out favor with Magath. Italian side Roma revealed the club are on the verge of signing Kjær on a €10 million move from Wolfsburg as a replacement for centre-back Philippe Mexès who left for AC Milan on a free transfer. However, the move to Roma was put back on hold after reports in Italy claimed the defender had been recalled by his club Wolfsburg. Instead on 30 August 2011, Kjær went out on a season-long loan deal to Roma, with the option to purchase at the end of the season.
Kjær made his debut for Roma in a 0–0 draw against Inter Milan on 17 September 2011. On 16 October 2011, Kjær received a red in a 2–1 loss against Lazio. Roma director Walter Sabatini dropped a strong hint that the club may decide against signing Kjær on a permanent basis due to his poor performance at Roma. He has been largely disappointing for Roma after he was to blame after Roma's 4–2 defeat to Cagliari on 1 February 2012. In the end, Roma decided against signing Kjær permanently, stating that he had made too many costly errors.
Return to Wolfsburg
After his loan-spell at Roma ended, Kjær stated he will not return to Wolfsburg, after coach Magath decided the Dane was not going to be part of his first team plans for the club's 2012–13 season. However, Magath soon after announced he was now willing to bury the hatchet with Kjær and would be keen to bring him into his first team at Wolfsburg.
On 5 July 2013, it was announced that Kjær had signed a four-year deal with Ligue 1 side, Lille. Kjær impressed during his first season in the French Ligue 1 as leader of the best defense in the major European national leagues in the 2013–14 season conceding only 26 goals in 38 matches including an impressive number of 21 clean sheets. As a result of the solid performances Kjær frequently appeared on various medias team of the week during the entire season, eventually earning a spot on "the Ligue 1 Team of the Season" alongside teammate and goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama. He scored his first ever Ligue 1 goal against Lorient with a deflected free kick.
Kjær made his debut for the Denmark national under-19 football team in September 2006, at the age of 17. He played a total 10 games and scored one goal for the under-19s until October 2007, and was named 2007 Danish under-19 talent of the year as the under-19s coach found Kjær had shown himself a talented defender despite his young age. Following his breakthrough with Midtjylland, Kjær was rested from the under-19s in March 2008 to avoid wearing him out.
He was called up for the Denmark national under-21 football team in May 2008 as a replacement for Michael Jakobsen, making his debut in a 0–4 defeat against the Germany under-21s. He was out of the under-21 team during his first time at Palermo, but was recalled in October 2008, spending the game as an unused substitute to Magnus Troest and Mathias Jørgensen. Kjær was called up to the senior Danish national team in February 2009, as national team coach Morten Olsen was impressed by his form for Palermo, and saw him and Per Krøldrup as main competitors to replace the retired defender Martin Laursen. He was an unused substitute for the friendly match against Greece, and returned to the under-21s for a single game in March 2009, playing well enough that under-21 coach Keld Bordinggaard recommended him for a recall to Olsen's squad.
He was once again a part of the senior squad for the 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification game against Sweden on 6 June 2009. Per Krøldrup was unavailable due to injury, and Kjær played the full game despite an injury of his own, as Denmark won 1–0. Kjær established himself in the Danish starting line-up, played the following three qualification games, and helped Denmark qualify for the 2010 World Cup. For the September 2009 qualification game against Portugal, Kjær told reporters that Cristiano Ronaldo should be stopped by a series of small fouls and one hard tackle. This prompted a complaint to FIFA by the Portuguese Football Federation requesting Kjær be suspended for unsportsman-like conduct, but the case was dropped following the mediation of the Danish Football Association.
On 28 May 2010, Denmark coach Morten Olsen announced that the player would be part of the final squad of 23 participating in the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. He was in the starting eleven in Denmark's first two games, against the Netherlands and Cameroon, where he received a yellow card in both games and therefore missed the third and crucial group game against Japan. However, in the match against Cameroon he was highly praised for his excellent long-range passing which helped to set up Nicklas Bendtner's first goal.
On 7 September 2010, following Denmark's win over Iceland, Stig Tøfting was not impressed by Kjær and criticized him for making too many mistakes. This left Kjær offended and he hit back on Tøfting saying "These statements hit me personally! It is the first time that I have come under pressure and I try to take these words as a motivation. I am not happy about his (Tøfting's) opinion. He just says that to stay in the public attention. He should be serious!"
Kjær was a part of the Danish UEFA Euro 2012-team, and was among the starting 11 in each of the three group games, against the Netherlands, Portugal and Germany. He served as Denmark's captain at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
|FC Midtjylland||2007–08||Danish Superliga||19||0||2||0||–||–||21||0|
|Roma (loan)||2011–12||Serie A||22||0||2||0||–||–||24||0|
- Statistics accurate as of match played 1 July 2018.
- Scores and results list Denmark's goal tally first.
|1.||22 March 2013||Andrův stadion, Olomouc, Czech Republic||Czech Republic||2–0||3–0||2014 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|2.||14 November 2014||Partizan Stadium, Belgrade, Serbia||Serbia||2–1||3–1||UEFA Euro 2016 qualification|
|3.||3 June 2016||Toyota Stadium, Toyota, Japan||Bosnia and Herzegovina||1–0||2–2 (3–4 p)||2016 Kirin Cup|
- Danish U19 Player of the Year: 2007
- Danish Talent of the Year: 2009
- Danish Player Of The Year: 2009
- "Simon Kjær i FCM til 2012" (in Danish). FC Midtjylland. 14 September 2007. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "List of Players" (PDF). FIFA. Retrieved 8 November 2010.
- "2018 FIFA World Cup Russia – List of Players" (PDF). FIFA.com. Fédération Internationale de Football Association. 4 June 2018. Retrieved 20 June 2018.
- "SIGNING". Sevilla FC Twitter. 2 August 2017. Retrieved 2 August 2017.
- "Simon Kjær stormer frem" (in Danish). FC Midtjylland. 3 October 2006. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "FCM-spiller hædret i Frankrig" (in Danish). FC Midtjylland. 17 March 2006. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- bold.dk (27 September 2006). "FCM-talenter takkede nej til millionkontrakter" (in Danish). Bold.dk. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Viasat Cup set i bakspejlet" (in Danish). FC Midtjylland. 5 June 2006. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Erik R: Nye spillere er kæmpetalenter | Tipsbladet" (in Danish). Tipsbladet.dk. 29 November 2006. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "FC Midtjylland afviser Real Madrid". bold.dk. 29 August 2007. Retrieved 1 March 2009.
- "Friday's gossip column". BBC Sport. 19 October 2007. Retrieved 9 April 2008.
- "Blitz di Foschi in Danimarca, preso Kjær" (in Italian). U.S. Città di Palermo. 16 February 2008. Retrieved 16 February 2008.
- "Palermo win Kjaer race". Sky Sports. 16 February 2008. Retrieved 9 April 2008.
- "Danish football player Simon Kjaer shows his new Palermo jersey to the press". Yahoo! Sports. 18 February 2008. Retrieved 9 April 2008.
- "DICHIARAZIONE DI ZAMPARINI". ilpalermocalcio.it (in Italian). 2 September 2008. Retrieved 14 March 2010.
- "Kjær: Det var en god debut". TV2 Sport. 27 October 2008. Retrieved 27 October 2008.
- "Kjær på tavlen i Palermo-sejr". Bold.dk. 2 November 2008. Retrieved 2 November 2008.
- "Simon Kjaer: I'm Not Leaving Palermo... For Now". Goal.com. 1 July 2009. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Kjær dropper Beck – og forlænger | Tipsbladet" (in Danish). Tipsbladet.dk. 27 September 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Aftenens vindere er…" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 9 November 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Årets Fodboldspiller 2009: Simon Kjær" (in Danish). Spillerforeningen.dk. 9 January 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Simon Kjær årets spiller" (in Danish). Sporten.dk. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Kjaer open to Wolfsburg talks". Sky Sports. 30 June 2010. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "Wolfsburg win Kjaer chase". Sky Sports. 8 July 2010. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "KJAER CEDUTO AL WOLFSBURG" (in Italian). US Città di Palermo. 8 July 2010. Retrieved 8 July 2010.
- "Danmarks dyreste fodboldspiller enig med Wolfsburg" (in Danish). Tipsbladet.dk. 5 July 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Avis: Kjær tredobler lønnen" (in Danish). Bold.dk. 8 July 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Olsen: Godt for Kjærs udvikling" (in Danish). Bold.dk. 8 July 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Kjær: Wolfsburg skal udvikle mig offensivt" (in Danish). Tipsbladet.dk. 8 July 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Love match winner in test match" (in Danish). Dr.dk / port. 25 July 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Kjær sænket af Bayern i Wolfsburg-debut". Politiken (in Danish). 20 August 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Kjær: Irriterende at få frataget mål" (in Danish). Tipsbladet.dk. 16 November 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Match Facts: Wolfsburg – Bayern Munich". 15 January 2011. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Kjær matchvinder for Wolfsburg" (in Danish). bold.dk. 22 January 2011. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Simon Kjær førte Wolfsburg til sejr" (in Danish). tv2sport.dk. 22 January 2011. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Wolfsburg U-turn for Magath". Sky Sports. 28 March 2011. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "Kjær skadet og tvivlsom mod Dortmund" (in Danish). bold.dk. 27 January 2011. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Simon Kjær ked af McLarens fyring" (in Danish). bold.dk. 8 February 2011. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "Wolfsburg's Simon Kjaer: Roma is a great club & joining them is a great opportunity". Goals.com. 25 August 2011. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "Kjaer edges closer to Roma move". ESPN Soccernet. 30 August 2011. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "Kjaer's Roma move put on hold". Sky Sports. 28 August 2011. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "Wolfsburg's Simon Kjaer joins Roma on loan". Goal.com. 30 August 2011. Retrieved 30 August 2011.
- "Roma director Walter Sabatini hints at Simon Kjaer departure". Goals.com. 2 February 2012. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "Kjaer won't return to Wolfsburg". Sky Sports. 31 May 2012. Retrieved 7 June 2012.
- "Kjaer offered clean slate". Sky Sports. 11 July 2012. Retrieved 16 July 2012.
- "L'international danois Simon Kjaer est Lillois!" (in French). Lille OSC. 5 July 2013. Retrieved 5 July 2013.
- Bairner, Robin (8 May 2014). "Ligue 1 Team of the Season: Ibrahimovic enjoys greatest ever campaign". Goal.com. Retrieved 20 May 2014.
- "LOSC Lille - FC Lorient match report". ligue 1.com. 23 August 2014. Retrieved 27 August 2014.
- "AÇIKLAMA". Fenerbahçe (in Turkish). 16 June 2015. Retrieved 17 June 2015.
- "Endnu en sejr over Portugal" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 6 September 2006. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Schmeichel årets Arla-talent" (in Danish). DBU.dk. 6 November 2007. Retrieved 9 April 2008.
- "Simon Kjær får fri" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 27 March 2008. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Agger og Kjær på U/21-landsholdet" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 25 May 2008. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Nederlag mod stærke tyskere" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 29 May 2008. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Vi er fortsat med!" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 12 October 2008. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Lyset slukket i Beograd" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 15 October 2008. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Kjaer, Poulsen make Denmark squad for friendly". International Herald Tribune. 4 February 2009. Retrieved 12 February 2009.
- "Præstation og potentiale" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 4 February 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Simon Kjær på landsholdet" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 4 February 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Zanka og Kjær danner forsvarspar for første gang" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 26 March 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Bordinggaard anbefalede Kjær | Tipsbladet" (in Danish). Tipsbladet.dk. 11 June 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Krøldrup skadet, Kjær tvivlsom" (in Danish). Dbu.dk. 31 May 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Kjær: Ronaldo skal lige klaskes ned | Tipsbladet" (in Danish). Tipsbladet.dk. 2 September 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Kjær reddet fra Ronaldo-karantæne | Tipsbladet" (in Danish). Tipsbladet.dk. 17 September 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Olsen names final Denmark squad". UEFA.com. 28 May 2010. Retrieved 2 June 2010.
- "Cameroon 1–2 Denmark match report". guardian.co.uk. 19 June 2010. Retrieved 18 August 2010.
- "Kjaer responds to criticism". Sky Sports. 8 September 2010. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "World Cup 2018: Introducing the captains". Retrieved 14 February 2019.
- "Simon Kjær » Club matches". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 7 January 2018.
- "S. Kjær". Soccerway. Retrieved 7 January 2018.
- Simon Kjær at National-Football-Teams.com
- "Kjær, Simon". National Football Teams. Retrieved 31 May 2017.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Simon Kjær.|