"Patrick Donale Vieira"

Patrick Vieira
France always had a tradition for strong and intelligent defensive midfielders with a keen sense of leadership. Whether it was Didier Deschamps, Makelele or Patrick Vieira in this posture (or two of them), France was always a tough nut to crack, due to its impressive midfield coordinated by these players.
With Didier Deschamps, the legendary France captain that won the World Cup and European Championship, retired and with Claude Makelele very close to retirement age too, the hopes of French fans to keeping the defensive midfielder's tradition in the national squad is a job left on the shoulders of Patrick Vieira.
Full name : Patrick Donale Vieira
Date of birth : June 23, 1976
Place of birth : Dakar, Senegal
Height : 6.4FT - 1.93M
Playing position : Defensive Midfielder

Patrick Vieira Biography – Youth Clubs and France Period
Like many other French soccer players, Patrick Vieira was born outside France. He was born and raised in Senegal and only moved to Paris at the age of 8, when he immediately started playing for his first youth club, FC Trappes.
His youth days would take him from Trappes to FC Drouais, then in 1991 to Tours FC at the age of 15. He played for Tours' youth squad until 1993, when first division French team AS Cannes spotted him and bought the 17 year old defensive midfielder.
At Cannes, his leadership and impressive constitution earned him not only a place in the first team, but the respect of his fellow teammates. Debuting at 17, he was already captaining the team at age 19, becoming one of the youngest captains in the history of the French leagues.
Italian giants AC Milan saw a great future to this French kid and bought him in the summer of 1995, Unfortunately, Vieira wasn't given a real chance to play in the star-studded team of AC Milan and he only got 2 substitute appearances during the entire 1995-1996 season, which were obviously not enough for a player hungry for trophies and pitch time. So when the offer from English club Arsenal London came, Vieira grabbed it with both hands.
Season Club Games Goals
1993–1995 AS Cannes 49 2
1995–1996 A.C. Milan 2 0
1996–2005 Arsenal 279 29
2005–2006 Juventus 31 5
2006– Internazionale 20 1
The coach gave the young midfielder a chance to play and he didn't disappoint, especially since he was practically built for playing in the English league: he had high stamina, was good with headers and had an impressive constitution.
Fortunately for Vieira, his good performances at Arsenal also brought him in the attention of the French national side, right on time as they were preparing to start the 1998 World Cup.
Although he wasn't a first team member, as France had both Didier Deschamps and Makelele available for the defensive midfielder position, Vieira did play at the World Cup and he even played in the final as a substitute, assisting Emmanuel Petit in the 3-0 goal against Brazil.
Coming back to Arsenal with even more confidence, Vieira would make a legend out of his name with the Gunners, helping them win the League and Cup in 1998, then again in 2002.
In the meantime, his participation with the French national squad at the European Championship was also crowned with success, Vieira now entering a select group of players that managed to lift both the World Cup and Euro Trophy.
The 2003-2004 season was probably the most impressive in the league, since Vieira helped Arsenal achieve a historic record, going unbeaten the entire season in the Premier League. He got his third League-Cup double with Arsenal that year, but in 2005 decided to move back to Italy to try his luck with giants Juventus Torino.
Years National Team Games Goals
1997–Present France 101 6
Patrick Vieira Biography – Back to Italy
His return to Italy was received with joy from the Juventus fans and Vieira immediately made an impact, helping Juve add yet another title to their long list of trophies.
However, the summer of 2006 proved to be a nightmare for Vieira, as Juventus were stripped of their recently won title and relegated to the second division after a match fixing scandal. As if that wasn't enough, he also lost the 2006 World Cup final that summer with France, being defeated by Italy.
He stated clearly he would not play in the second division with Juventus, so he was bought by Internazionale Milano, for which he played 20 league games in the last season, winning the Italian league once more.
Since he's just over his 30s, Patrick Vieira will probably play at least a couple more years for Inter and he's expected to lead France in yet another impressive Euro and World Cup run in 2008 and 2010 respectively.


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