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Robert Alexander Michel Melki (Arabic: روبرت أليكساندر ميشيل ملكي‎; born 14 November 1992) is a professional footballer who plays as a defender for Qatari club Al-Khor and the Lebanon national team.[1] While mainly as center-back, Michel Melki can also be deployed as a right-back at occasions.[2]

Alexander Michel Melki
Alexander Michel Melki 20191201.jpg
Michel Melki with Lebanon at the 2019 AFC Asian Cup
Personal information
Full name Robert Alexander Michel Melki
Date of birth (1992-11-14) 14 November 1992 (age 26)
Place of birth Västertälje, Sweden
Height 1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)
Playing position Defender
Club information
Current team
Al-Khor
Number 13
Youth career
Syrianska FC
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2011–2017 Syrianska FC 99 (3)
2017–2018 AFC Eskilstuna 52 (0)
2019– Al-Khor 7 (0)
National team
2011 Sweden U19 1 (0)
2013 Sweden U21 4 (0)
2018– Lebanon 4 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 13 April 2019
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 17 January 2019

Swedish by birth, Michel Melki represented them at youth level before also acquiring Lebanese nationality through his grandfather on his father's side.[3] He decided to switch allegiance to Lebanon and made his senior international debut in 2018. After following his father's tracks playing at Syrianska for six years, Michel Melki moved to AFC Eskilstuna in 2017, helping them gain promotion back to the Allsvenskan the following season. In 2019, he moved to Qatari side Al-Khor.

Contents

Early lifeEdit

Alexander was born and raised in Sweden, but has also acquired Lebanese nationality due to his Assyrian origins, making him eligible for the Lebanese national team.[4] He has a younger brother, Felix, who also plays football.[5] Felix stated in an interview with TRT World that his grandfather was Lebanese, and that two of his father's sisters were born in Lebanon.[6]

While is mother is Swedish, his father, Robert Michel, is of Syriac descent. He was a Syrianska player when the team was still in the lower divisions of Swedish football.[7] It is based in Södertälje and is supported by Syriacs worldwide.[8]

Club careerEdit

SyrianskaEdit

 
Alexander Michel for Syrianska in 2013.

Alexander Michel started his career at Syrianska. His personal debut in the first team and in the Allsvenskan took place on 20 June 2011 at the age of 18, with his team being defeated 3-0 against Djurgården.[9] During that season he made a total of 10 league appearances. In 2012 he found further space, with 23 appearances of which 18 as a starter.

Exactly two years after his debut in the Swedish championship, on 20 June 2013 Michel seriously damaged the cruciate ligament of his left knee during a home match against Malmö FF.[10] The injury forced him to stay out of action for a year, with his next official match being played on 25 June 2014 in the Superettan.

Having recovered from the injury, in July 2015 Michel broke the same cruciate ligament damaged two years earlier forcing him to finish the season in advance.[11] His last year at Syrianska was in 2016, with 25 league appearances in the league.

AFC EskilstunaEdit

After the expiration of his contract with Syrianska,[12] Michel carried out trials with Hammarby and Djurgården in January 2017.[13] A few weeks later, he signed a two-year contract with Allsveskan side AFC Eskilstuna.[14][15]

In his first season in the club, Alexander played 23 games in the Allsvenskan coming last in the league.[1] The following season, relegated to the Superettan, he played 29 league games as well as both play-off games to promote his team back to the first division.[1][16][17]

Al-KhorEdit

On 23 January 2019, Al Kass Sports Channels officially announced the signing of Alexander Michel Melki to Qatar Stars League side Al-Khor SC till the end of the season.[18][19]

International careerEdit

After playing for the U19 and U21 sides of Sweden, in 2018 he received a call-up for Lebanon due to his origins.[4] His international debut came in November against Uzbekistan, with the match ending in a goalless draw as he played the whole 90 minutes.[20] He would be called up for the 2019 Asian Cup, alongside his brother Felix, one month later.[21]

Career statisticsEdit

InternationalEdit

Lebanon national team
Year Apps Goals
2018 1 0
2019 3 0
Total 4 0

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c Strack-Zimmermann, Benjamin. "Alexander Michel Melki". www.national-football-teams.com. Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  2. ^ "The final 23: who are they?". Lebanese Football Review. 9 January 2019. Retrieved 26 July 2019.
  3. ^ "How diaspora footballers came together under the Lebanese flag". TRT World. Retrieved 14 March 2019.
  4. ^ a b "The Lebanon squad to face Uzbekistan and Australia has been named". YOUR HOME OF NEWS. 2018-11-08. Retrieved 2018-11-08.
  5. ^ "AFC Asian Cup 2019: Brothers competing in the continental tournament". FOX Sports Asia. 2019-01-02. Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  6. ^ "How diaspora footballers came together under the Lebanese flag". TRT World. Retrieved 14 March 2019.
  7. ^ "Alexander Michel är redo för nästa steg | Matchdax". matchdax.se (in Swedish). Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  8. ^ "The strangest football derby in the world - The National Newspaper". web.archive.org. 2010-09-25. Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  9. ^ "Allsvenskan SvFF - Svensk fotboll". www.svenskfotboll.se (in Swedish). Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  10. ^ "Alexander Michel knä- skadad: "Är inte bra" | Allsvenskan | Expressen". www.expressen.se (in Swedish). Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  11. ^ "Tunga beskedet för Syrianska - nyckelspelare borta året ut". fotbollskanalen (in Swedish). Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  12. ^ "Framtiden oklar för Alex Michel – hoppas på flytt i vinter: "Behöver en liten nytändning"". lt.se (in Swedish). 2016-12-25. Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  13. ^ "Efter Hammarby-test - nu tränar Michel med Djurgården -FotbollDirekt". www.fotbolldirekt.se. Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  14. ^ "AFC Eskilstuna värvar Alexander Michel". www.expressen.se (in Swedish). Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  15. ^ "Fotbolltransfers.com - Officiellt: Alexander Michel klar för AFC Eskilstuna". fotbolltransfers.com. Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  16. ^ "Athletic Eskilstuna v IF Brommapojkarna". svenskfotboll.se. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  17. ^ "IF Brommapojkarna v Athletic Eskilstuna". svenskfotboll.se. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  18. ^ الكاس, قنوات (2019-01-23). "خاص للكاس: المدافع اللبناني روبرت ميشيل ميلكي وقع رسميا لنادي #الخور حتى نهاية الموسمpic.twitter.com/zBmCmSixZD". @alkasschannel (in Arabic). Retrieved 2019-01-23.
  19. ^ Lebanon, Football. "روبرت ملكي رسميا الى الخور القطري". football-lebanon.com. Retrieved 2019-01-23.
  20. ^ Strack-Zimmermann, Benjamin. "Uzbekistan vs. Lebanon (0:0)". www.national-football-teams.com. Retrieved 2019-01-02.
  21. ^ "AC2019 Final Squads". www.the-afc.com. Retrieved 6 January 2019.

External linksEdit