Nicolas Anelka

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Nicolas Anelka
Nicolas Anelka 2011.jpg
0Full Name Nicolas Sébastien Anelka
0Date of Birth 14 March 1979
0Place of Birth Versailles, France
0Position Striker
0Chelsea career 2008-2011
0Debut 12 January 2008
0Games (goals) 184 (59)
0Other clubs Paris Saint-Germain
Real Madrid
Liverpool (loan)
Manchester City
Bolton Wanderers
Shanghai Shenhua
Juventus (loan)
West Bromwich Albion
Mumbai City

Nicolas Sébastien Anelka (born 14 March 1979 in Versailles, France) is a French international striker who played for Chelsea from 2008 until 2011. He was Premier League topscorer during the 2008-09 season, winning the FA Cup in the same campaign, and was part of Chelsea's double winning side in 2009-10. He is one of only two players to have won the double with two different clubs, along with Ashley Cole. Anelka's time in west London was the most settled period of a nomadic and often controversial career, though his time at the club came to an end acrimoniously when he fell out with manager André Villas-Boas and was frozen out of the first team. He left Chelsea to join Chinese side Shanghai Shenhua in January 2012 after almost four years at the club.


Before Chelsea

Anelka began his career at Paris Saint-Germain, but soon moved to Arsenal. He became a first team regular and won the PFA Young Player of the Year Award the following season. Real Madrid signed him for £22.3 million in 1999, a record fee, but he did not settle in well and returned to Paris Saint-Germain in a £20 million deal. Despite regular first team football in Paris, Anelka set his eyes upon the English Premier League once more; he went on loan to Liverpool in January 2002 but joined Manchester City for £13 million for the start of the 2002-03 season. After two-and-a-half years in Manchester he made a £7 million move to Turkey, where he would spend two seasons with Fenerbahçe, before returning to England to sign for Bolton Wanderers for a club record fee of £8 million in 2006.

Chelsea career


On 11 January 2008, it was confirmed that Anelka would join Chelsea for a reported £15 million. Anelka made his debut against Tottenham Hotspur on 12 January 2008,[1] and scored his first goal two weeks later in the FA Cup against Wigan Athletic. He scored his first league goal on 2 February against Portsmouth, but failed to score again for Chelsea during the 2007-08 season. This was generally attributed to the fact that manager Avram Grant used him mainly as a substitute or played him in a wing position. In the 2008 UEFA Champions League Final, Anelka's seventh and decisive penalty was stopped by Edwin van der Sar, ultimately resulting in Manchester United winning the Champions League. On 3 August 2008, Anelka scored four goals against AC Milan in a 5-0 friendly win.


With Didier Drogba injured at the beginning of the season, Anelka made a very impressive start to the 2008-09 campaign. He scored 25 times — 19 of which in the Premier League, making the Frenchman the first player to reach 10 goals in the competition that season. Anelka scored his first competitive hat-trick for Chelsea against Sunderland, in a 5-0 home win on 1 November 2008, and followed this up with two braces, against Blackburn Rovers, then West Bromwich Albion.
Anelka won the Golden Boot for the 2008-09 season
He established himself as an important member of the squad and maintained his place in the team despite the return to fitness of Drogba. After the arrival of Guus Hiddink, Anelka was more often played on the wing. Furthermore, he was ranked amongst the top goalscorers in the league for the season. He scored another hat-trick against Watford in the FA Cup to earn Chelsea a 3–1 victory at Vicarage Road. On 10 May, he scored one goal and set up another in a 4–1 away win against former club Arsenal, which resulted in their worst home defeat for 38 years. A powerful strike in Chelsea's final Premier League game of the season at Sunderland put him as top goal scorer for the season in the Premiership, earning him the Golden Boot with 19 goals in total.


Anelka scored his first goal of the season against West London rivals Fulham in a 2-0 win at Craven Cottage, before continuing his fine form with the opening goal in Chelsea's 3-0 win over Burnley the following weekend. He netted his third goal of the season in the opening game of the UEFA Champions League group stage in the 1-0 victory over FC Porto.

Anelka scored one of the best goals of his season, against APOEL Nicosia in the Champions League with the ball being passed in to the net from outside the box. Anelka scored his 3rd League goal of the season against Liverpool at Stamford bridge in a 2-0 win with the second goal coming from French team-mate Florent Malouda. Anelka continued his fine scoring run in the Champions League with the winner in the 1-0 victory over FC Porto at the Estadio Dragao, making Chelsea only the second ever English side to win at Porto's home ground. He continued his scoring in the season by scoring Chelsea's first goal in a 3-3 draw against Everton in the Premier League, his first goal in the competition since October. He followed that up with another goal in Chelsea's 2-1 victory over Portsmouth. On 16th of January 2010 on his return from injury, Anelka scored twice in an astonishing 7-2 victory over Sunderland. He continued this fine form into the next match scoring in an FA Cup tie against Preston North End bringing his tally in the previous 4 matches to 5 goals. After the return of Didier Drogba from the African Cup of Nations, Anelka had been playing on the wing to support him, and failed to score again until mid-April. He scored his first goal since January in a 1-0 win over his old team Bolton Wanderers, increasing the gap ahead of second place Manchester United to 4 points. On the final day of the season Anelka scored two goals in an 8-0 win against Wigan Athletic, including the first goal in the sixth minute, to help Chelsea win their first Premier League title in four years. In June 2010 Anelka extended his contract by one year, taking it to the end of the 2011-12 season. [2]


Anelka scored his first two goals of the season against Wigan Athletic in a 6-0 win, both goals coming shortly after the half time interval. Anelka continued his fine goalscoring form in the Champions League, scoring five goals in the group stage as Chelsea progressed as group winners. As Chelsea suffered a decline in form in the middle of the season, Anelka's form also suffered, as the whole side struggled to score goals. He did score three goals in January, but the arrival of Fernando Torres at the end of the month for a club record £50m threatened to limit his chances over the second half of the season. Torres and Anelka started together in a Champions League knock-out match against FC Copenhagen in February, and it was the Frenchman who took his opportunities, scoring twice in a 2-0 win. These would be his last goals of the season however, and the campaign ultimately ended in disappointment for his club, with the Blues failing to win a trophy. Nonetheless Anelka was Chelsea's topscorer for the season, with 7 of his 16 goals coming in the Champions League.


Anelka scored Chelsea's first goal of the 2011-12 season, equalising in an eventual 2-1 home win against West Bromwich Albion. It would be his only goal of the season, and his last for Chelsea, however. New manager André Villas-Boas preferred Daniel Sturridge on the right hand side of the front three; the position that Anelka had made his own in previous seasons, and with the Portuguese manager reportedly keen to reduce the average age of the squad, Anelka was deemed surplus to requirements and would be allowed to leave in January after handing in a transfer request. [3] On 12 December 2011 Chelsea announced that a transfer had been agreed with Chinese side Shanghai Shenhua, with the Frenchman to leave in the January transfer window, having spent more time at Chelsea than at any other club in a much-travelled career. [4]

After Chelsea

Four months after moving to China Anelka was appointed player-manager of Shanghai Shenhua. [5] After just over a year at the Shanghai club Anelka returned to Europe, joining Juventus on a five month loan deal. He made his debut for the Turin side in mid-February 2013 in a UEFA Champions League match against Celtic, becoming only the second player (after Zlatan Ibrahimović) to play for six different clubs in the competition. [6] Anelka then returned to England joining West Bromwich Albion ahead of the 2013-14 season, having been released by Shanghai Shenhua. His spell at West Brom was mired in controversy after he performed a quenelle after scoring a goal, a hand gesture described by Jewish groups as an inverted Nazi salute. He was fined £80,000 and banned for five games. Anelka unilaterally terminated his contract at West Brom a short time later, who gave him 14 days notice of termination from the club for gross misconduct. In September 2014 he once again left Europe, joining Mumbai City of the newly-formed Indian Super League.


Anelka has played many times at international level and won his first international honours with France at Euro 2000, and won the Confederations Cup the following year. His failure to settle at club level limited his international appearances, but he returned to the national team for the Euro 2008 competition. Anelka was part of France's 2010 World Cup squad, but at half time during France's second group game he verbally attacked France coach Raymond Domenech, after reportedly being criticised for straying out of position. He was substituted, and subsequently sent home after refusing to apologise [7]. The incident led to a player revolt amongst the French squad, who refused to train. The team eventually finished bottom of their group with just one point from three games. In August 2010 Anelka was banned from playing for the French national side for 18 games as a result of his conduct during the World Cup [8], with the striker responding that he was "dying with laughter" at the ban, having already decided to retire from international football.


See also: List of Nicolas Anelka goals
Season Prem FA Cup League Cup Europe Other Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
2007-08 14 1 3 1 2 0 5 0 0 0 24 2
2008-09 37 19 5 4 0 0 12 2 0 0 54 25
2009-10 33 11 4 1 0 0 7 3 1 0 45 15
2010-11 32 6 3 1 1 2 9 7 1 0 46 16
2011-12 9 1 0 0 2 0 4 0 0 0 15 1
Total 125 38 15 7 5 2 37 12 2 0 184 59

Career honours



Real Madrid

Paris Saint-Germain






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