Mihkel Aksalu

Mihkel Aksalu (born 7 November 1984) is an Estonian professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Meistriliiga club Paide Linnameeskond.

Mihkel Aksalu
2019-06-11 Fußball, Männer, Länderspiel, Deutschland-Estland StP 2033 LR10 by Stepro.jpg
Aksalu with Estonia in 2019
Personal information
Full name Mihkel Aksalu[1]
Date of birth (1984-11-07) 7 November 1984 (age 36)
Place of birth Kuressaare, Estonia
Height 1.94 m (6 ft 4 in)
Position(s) Goalkeeper
Club information
Current team
Paide Linnameeskond
Number 1
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2000–2002 Sörve 39 (0)
2000 Kuressaare 1 (0)
2003 HÜJK Emmaste 10 (0)
2003–2005 Tervis Pärnu 29 (0)
2003–2009 Flora 115 (0)
2004 Lelle 2 (0)
2006 Flora II 6 (0)
2010–2012 Sheffield United 0 (0)
2010Mansfield Town (loan) 2 (0)
2012 Flora II 1 (0)
2012 Flora 7 (0)
2013–2019 SJK 221 (0)
2021– Paide Linnameeskond 0 (0)
National team
1999–2000 Estonia U16 4 (0)
Estonia U17 2 (0)
2003 Estonia U20 1 (0)
2004–2007 Estonia U21 13 (0)
2007– Estonia 45 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 5 January 2021
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 23 October 2019

Club careerEdit

KuressaareEdit

Aksalu joined the youth system of his hometown club Kuressaare and played for their reserve team Muhumaa (renamed Sörve in 2002). He made his debut in the Meistriliiga in his single appearance for Kuressaare on 23 September 2000, in a 4–1 away win over Valga.

FloraEdit

In December 2002, Aksalu was included in Flora's first team squad for pre-season training.[2] During his first seasons with the club, he mostly played for the club's reserve side Tervis Pärnu. Aksalu became a regular starter for Flora in the 2006 season. His first trophy with Flora came in the 2007–08 Estonian Cup.

Sheffield UnitedEdit

On 29 January 2010, following a successful trial, Aksalu signed a two-and-a-half-year contract with Championship club Sheffield United for a transfer fee of £180,000. Kevin Blackwell, Sheffield United's manager at the time, claimed Aksalu was the best goalkeeping triallist he had seen in a long time and had the potential to become Estonia's number one.[3] However, Aksalu failed to impress new manager Gary Speed and was unable to break into the first team.

On 6 October 2010, Aksalu joined Conference National club Mansfield Town on a two-month loan.[4][5] He remained sidelined through most of his spell due to an abdominal muscle problem, making only three appearances before returning to Bramall Lane in December. After a lengthy spell on the sidelines following back surgery, Aksalu was released by the club on 19 January 2012.[6]

Return to FloraEdit

Following his release, Aksalu returned to Estonia and began training with his former club Flora to regain his fitness. He rejoined the team on 9 April 2012.[7]

SJKEdit

 
Aksalu with SJK in 2015

On 4 April 2013, Aksalu signed a one-year contract with Ykkönen club SJK.[8] He made his debut for the team on 4 May 2013, in a 2–1 home win over PK-35 Vantaa. SJK won the 2013 Ykkönen and were promoted to the Veikkausliiga. In October 2013, Aksalu signed a new two-year contract with the club.[9] On 24 August 2015, his contract was extended to 2017.[10] Aksalu won the Veikkausliiga title in the 2015 season.[11] He was named league's Best Goalkeeper and SJK's Player of the Year.[12] Aksalu was named club captain ahead of the 2016 season. On 24 September 2016, Aksalu helped his team win the 2016 Finnish Cup by saving two penalties in a shootout against HJK in the final.[13]

International careerEdit

Aksalu has represented Estonia at under-16, under-17, under-20 and under-21 levels, amassing 20 youth appearances overall.[14]

He made his senior international debut for Estonia on 17 October 2007, playing the first half of a friendly match against Montenegro, where he conceded the only goal of the game. In 2015, he succeeded Sergei Pareiko as Estonia's number one goalkeeper.

Career statisticsEdit

ClubEdit

As of match played 21 September 2019.[1][15][16]
Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
Club Season League Cup[a] League Cup[b] Europe Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Sörve 2000 Esiliiga 11 0 11 0
2001 II liiga 16 0 16 0
2002 II liiga 12 0 12 0
Total 39 0 39 0
Kuressaare 2000 Meistriliiga 1 0 0 0 1 0
HÜJK Emmaste 2003 II liiga 10 0 0 0 10 0
Tervis Pärnu 2003 Esiliiga 7 0 1 0 2[c] 0 10 0
2004 Esiliiga 15 0 1 0 16 0
2005 Esiliiga 7 0 0 0 7 0
Total 29 0 2 0 2 0 33 0
Flora 2003 Meistriliiga 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
2005 Meistriliiga 8 0 3 0 0 0 11 0
2006 Meistriliiga 15 0 2 0 0 0 1[d] 0 18 0
2007 Meistriliiga 30 0 0 0 2[e] 0 4[f] 0 36 0
2008 Meistriliiga 30 0 2 0 2[e] 0 2[f] 0 36 0
2009 Meistriliiga 31 0 3 0 2[e] 0 3[g] 0 39 0
Total 115 0 10 0 6 0 10 0 141 0
Lelle 2004 II liiga 2 0 0 0 2 0
Flora II 2006 Esiliiga 6 0 0 0 6 0
Sheffield United 2009–10 Championship 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2010–11 Championship 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2011–12 League One 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Mansfield Town (loan) 2010–11 Conference National 2 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
Flora II 2012 Esiliiga 1 0 0 0 1 0
Flora 2012 Meistriliiga 7 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 9 0
SJK 2013 Ykkönen 26 0 0 0 26 0
2014 Veikkausliiga 30 0 2 0 6 0 38 0
2015 Veikkausliiga 32 0 1 0 3 0 2[e] 0 38 0
2016 Veikkausliiga 31 0 2 0 4 0 2[h] 0 39 0
2017 Veikkausliiga 32 0 6 0 2[e] 0 40 0
2018 Veikkausliiga 18 0 6 0 24 0
2019 Veikkausliiga 15 0 2 0 17 0
Total 184 0 19 0 13 0 6 0 222 0
Total 396 0 34 0 13 0 12 0 12 0 467 0
  1. ^ Includes the Estonian Cup, FA Cup and Finnish Cup
  2. ^ Includes the Finnish League Cup
  3. ^ Appearances in Esiliiga promotion play-offs
  4. ^ Appearance in Estonian Supercup
  5. ^ a b c d e Appearances in UEFA Cup/UEFA Europa League
  6. ^ a b Appearances in Baltic League
  7. ^ One appearance in Estonian Supercup, two appearances in Baltic League
  8. ^ Appearances in UEFA Champions League

InternationalEdit

As of match played 26 March 2019.[17]
Appearances and goals by national team and year
National team Year Apps Goals
Estonia
2007 2 0
2008 3 0
2009 1 0
2010 3 0
2012 1 0
2013 1 0
2014 3 0
2015 7 0
2016 8 0
2017 8 0
2018 7 0
2019 1 0
Total 45 0

HonoursEdit

ClubEdit

Flora

SJK

IndividualEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Mihkel Aksalu" (in Estonian). Estonian Football Association.
  2. ^ "Flora ja Valga nimetasid koosseisu" [Flora and Valga announce squads] (in Estonian). Delfi Sport. 4 December 2002.
  3. ^ "Sheffield United sign Estonia keeper Mihkel Aksalu". BBC Sport. 29 January 2010.
  4. ^ "Mansfield Town swoop for keeper Mihkel Aksalu". BBC Sport. 6 October 2010.
  5. ^ "Stags loan for Aksalu". The Telegraph. 7 October 2010.
  6. ^ "Mihkel Aksalu lahkus Sheffield Unitedist" [Mihkel Aksalu left Sheffield United] (in Estonian). ERR Sport. 19 January 2012.
  7. ^ "Mihkel Aksalu liitus taas FC Floraga" [Mihkel Aksalu rejoined FC Flora] (in Estonian). ERR Sport. 9 April 2012.
  8. ^ "Ametlik: Mihkel Aksalust sai Seinäjoki mängija" [Official: Mihkel Aksalu became Seinäjoki's player] (in Estonian). ERR Sport. 4 April 2013.
  9. ^ "Aksalu pikendas kõrgliigasse tõusva SJK-ga lepingut" [Aksalu extended his contract with top flight-promoted SJK] (in Estonian). ERR Sport. 30 October 2013.
  10. ^ "Eesti jalgpallikoondise väravavaht pikendas Soomes lepingut" [Estonia national team extended his contract in Finland] (in Estonian). ERR Sport. 24 August 2015.
  11. ^ "Mihkel Aksalu ja SJK võitsid Soome meistritiitli" [Mihkel Aksalu and SJK won the Finnish championship] (in Estonian). ERR Sport. 25 October 2015.
  12. ^ "Mihkel Aksalu valiti Soome kõrgliigas hooaja parimaks väravavahiks" [Mihkel Aksalu named best goalkeeper in the Finnish top flight] (in Estonian). ERR Sport. 30 October 2015.
  13. ^ "Mihkel Aksalu kaks penaltitõrjet aitasid SJK Soome karikafinaalis võidule" [Mihkel Aksalu's two saves in the final helped SJK win the Finnish Cup] (in Estonian). ERR Sport. 24 September 2016.
  14. ^ "Aksalu, Mihkel" (in Estonian). ESBL.
  15. ^ "M. Aksalu". Soccerway.com.
  16. ^ "Mihkel Aksalu". National-Football-Teams.com.
  17. ^ "Mihkel Aksalu" (in Estonian). Estonian Football Association.

External linksEdit