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Valter Birsa (born 7 August 1986) is a Slovenian footballer who plays as a winger for Cagliari.

Valter Birsa
Valter Birsa 2009.jpg
Personal information
Full name Valter Birsa[1]
Date of birth (1986-08-07) 7 August 1986 (age 33)
Place of birth Šempeter pri Gorici, SFR Yugoslavia
Height 1.84 m (6 ft 12 in)
Playing position Winger
Club information
Current team
Cagliari
Number 14
Youth career
1991–2004 Bilje
2004–2005 Gorica
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2003 Primorje 1 (0)
2004 Bilje 7 (6)
2004–2006 Gorica 61 (26)
2006–2009 Sochaux 66 (8)
2009Auxerre (loan) 15 (1)
2009–2011 Auxerre 68 (8)
2011–2013 Genoa 9 (0)
2012–2013Torino (loan) 17 (2)
2013–2015 Milan 15 (2)
2014–2015Chievo (loan) 35 (0)
2015–2019 Chievo 122 (18)
2019– Cagliari 12 (0)
National team
2001 Slovenia U15 7 (1)
2004 Slovenia U19 1 (0)
2004–2005 Slovenia U20 2 (0)
2004–2006 Slovenia U21 12 (5)
2006 Slovenia B 1 (0)
2006–2018 Slovenia 90 (7)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 09:36, 2 June 2019 (UTC)

Club careerEdit

Born in Šempeter pri Gorici, he spent his childhood in Nova Gorica, Slovenia. Birsa's career began at the age of five, when he started playing for ND Bilje, the village club of Bilje near Nova Gorica. As he was a talented player, he was soon transferred first to Primorje, then to Gorica at the age of 17. By the second season he was already the second best striker and one of the best in the Slovenian first league, scoring 29 goals for his home team, an outstanding goalscoring record for a midfielder.

SochauxEdit

In 2006, he signed for French club Sochaux in Ligue de Football Professionnel, Ligue 1. He was declared the best Slovenian player of 2006–2008 by the leading Slovenian football website.[2]

Auxerre (on loan)Edit

On 22 January 2009, AJ Auxerre signed him on a loan deal until June 2009 from Sochaux.[3] He scored his first Auxerre goal against giants Lyon. On 29 May, it was announced that Auxerre had made the loan permanent.[4] In the 2010–11 season, Birsa scored a 23-yard free kick and his first Champions league goal against Ajax in the group stage, Ajax eventually won 2–1.

GenoaEdit

On 2 February 2011, despite interest from big Premier league teams such as Liverpool and Fulham, Birsa signed a four-year contract with Serie A club Genoa.[5] He made just nine appearances in his maiden season in Italy.

Torino (on loan)Edit

He joined Torino on the 31 August 2012 on loan. At Torino, Birsa played 17 games, scoring 2 goals but did not do enough to convince Torino to sign him on a permanent deal so he returned to Genoa at the end of the season.

A.C. MilanEdit

Birsa made the switch to Milan on 31 August 2013, in what was a straight swap deal which saw Luca Antonini move in the opposite direction. He was handed the number 14 shirt at Milan. He scored his first goal for Milan on 28 September 2013 against Sampdoria to give the Rossoneri the win.

ChievoEdit

He signed for Chievo on 9 July 2014 on loan.[6] On 2 July 2015, Chievo signed Birsa outright in a three-year contract.[7]

CagliariEdit

On 9 January 2019, Birsa signed with Serie A side Cagliari.[8]

International careerEdit

He played for the Slovenian national football team between 2006 and 2018. He scored his first goal for the national team on 9 September 2009 in a World Cup qualifying match against Poland, which Slovenia won 3–0. At the 2010 World Cup finals, Birsa struck a long-range curling shot in Slovenia's second match against the United States. Slovenia drew that match 2–2.

Career statisticsEdit

As of match played 26 May 2019[9]
Club performance League Cup Continental Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
2003–04 Primorje 1. SNL 1 0 0 0 1 0
2004–05 Gorica 26 7 4 0 2 0 32 7
2005–06 35 19 4 0 2 1 41 20
Total 61 26 8 0 4 1 73 27
2006–07 Sochaux Ligue 1 31 3 0 0 31 3
2007–08 22 3 0 0 2 0 24 3
2008–09 28 3 3 0 31 3
Total 81 9 3 0 2 0 86 9
2009–10 Auxerre Ligue 1 35 3 4 0 39 3
2010–11 33 5 2 0 7 1 42 6
Total 68 8 6 0 7 1 81 9
2011–12 Genoa Serie A 9 0 3 2 12 2
2012–13 Torino 17 2 1 0 18 2
2013–14 Milan 15 2 2 0 4 0 21 2
2014–15 Chievo 35 0 1 0 36 0
2015–16 35 6 1 0 36 6
2016–17 35 7 2 0 37 7
2017–18 35 3 1 1 36 4
2018–19 17 2 1 0 18 2
Total 157 18 6 1 0 0 163 19
2018–19 Cagliari Serie A 12 0 1 0 13 0
Career total 421 65 30 3 17 2 468 70

International goalsEdit

Scores and results list Slovenia's goal tally first.[10]
# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 9 September 2009 Ljudski vrt, Maribor, Slovenia   Poland 3–0 3–0 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification
2 10 October 2009 Tehelné pole, Bratislava, Slovakia   Slovakia 1–0 2–0
3 18 June 2010 Ellis Park Stadium, Johannesburg, South Africa   United States 1–0 2–2 2010 FIFA World Cup
4 7 June 2013 Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland   Iceland 2–2 4–2 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification
5 19 November 2013 Arena Petrol, Celje, Slovenia   Canada 1–0 1–0 Friendly
6 9 October 2015 Stožice Stadium, Ljubljana, Slovenia   Lithuania 1–0 1–1 UEFA Euro 2016 Qualification
7 4 September 2017 4–0 4–0 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification

Personal lifeEdit

Birsa was born in Šempeter pri Gorici, present day Slovenia. In 2012, he married his long-time girlfriend Mateja, the couple has a son named Nolan.[11]

HonoursEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "FIFA World Cup South Africa 2010: List of Players" (PDF). FIFA. 4 June 2010. p. 27. Retrieved 16 April 2014.
  2. ^ "Največji slovenski nogometni portal - Nogomania". www.nogomania.com.
  3. ^ "Valter Birsa prêté à Auxerre" (in French). FC Sochaux-Montbéliard. Archived from the original on 3 February 2009. Retrieved 31 January 2009.
  4. ^ "Prolongation pour Stéphane Grichting et Benoît Pedretti, Valter Birsa auxerrois". Archived from the original on 11 November 2008.
  5. ^ "Birsa štiri leta v Genovi" (in Slovenian). nogomania.com. Retrieved 3 February 2011.
  6. ^ "Official: Valter Birsa coming to ChievoVerona". A.C. ChievoVerona. 9 July 2014. Archived from the original on 5 July 2015. Retrieved 4 July 2015.
  7. ^ "Official: Birsa belongs to ChievoVerona". A.C. ChievoVerona. 2 July 2015. Archived from the original on 5 July 2015. Retrieved 4 July 2015.
  8. ^ "UFFICIALE: Cagliari, preso Birsa a titolo definitivo dal Chievo" (in Italian). Retrieved 9 January 2019.
  9. ^ "V. Birsa". Soccerway.com. Retrieved 26 June 2018.
  10. ^ "Birsa, Valter". National Football Teams. Retrieved 8 September 2017.
  11. ^ "Valter Birsa: Poroka je bila slavje brez primere". 11 June 2012.

External linksEdit