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Javad Nekounam

Javad Nekounam (; born 7 September 1980 in Rey, Iran) is an Iranian Association football who plays for CA Osasuna in La Liga.

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Javad Nekounam biography


Javad Nekounam (; born 7 September 1980 in Rey, Iran) is an Iranian Association football who plays for CA Osasuna in La Liga.

Usually playing as a Midfielder Centre midfielder, Javad Nekounam is known for Javad Nekounam passing ability, defensive acumen, ball distribution and powerful long-range shots. Javad Nekounam represented Iran national football team over 120 times.

Club career

Early years / UAE

Having played for Pas Tehran F.C for several years and played in AFC Champions League for PAS, in 2005 Nekounam signed a 5-month contract to play for Al-Wahda Club (Abu Dhabi) in the United Arab Emirates for $1M.

In January 2006, Javad Nekounam joined another club in the country, Sharjah FC, although some European clubs such as 1. FC Kaiserslautern and Tottenham Hotspur F.C. had shown interest in him.

Osasuna

After Javad Nekounam performance at the 2006 FIFA World Cup many clubs in Europe were in the running to sign Nekounam, mainly Hertha BSC of the Fußball-Bundesliga and France Ligue 1 outfit Olympique Lyonnais, but Javad Nekounam eventually joined La Liga side CA Osasuna on a two-year contract, with an option to a third year with player and club agreement, with a Euro5 million minimum release-fee clause on Javad Nekounam contract. Javad Nekounam thus became the first Iranian player to be signed by a Spanish club. After a particularly successful 2006–07 La Liga, Nekounam began to attract interest from other European clubs noticeably Scotland club Rangers F.C., who had a Pound sign1 million pound offer rejected.

On August 14, Nekounam suffered an Anterior cruciate ligament rupture in Javad Nekounam right knee and, after undergoing a successful surgery in Augsburg, Germany, missed eight months of action. Javad Nekounam number 24 was given to new signing Jaroslav Plašil, as Javad Nekounam recovered from Javad Nekounam injury.

On 24 November 2007, Osasuna showed faith in Nekounam signing a three-year contract extension on Javad Nekounam existing contract that was set to end on 30 June of the following year, with a €5M buy-out clause for the first two seasons and €2.5M for the last.

In February 2008, Nekounam made Javad Nekounam first training appearance since the injury. Incidentally, a week later, Switzerland Xavier Margairaz (teammate and also a central midfielder) suffered a similar injury, missing an estimate period that could amount to one year. On 27 April, Javad Nekounam made Javad Nekounam long-awaited return against Valencia CF, replacing Francisco Puñal in the 70th minute, in a 0–3 away loss.

On 31 August 2008, Nekounam scored Osasuna's first goal of 2008–09 La Liga, from the Penalty kick, in a 1–1 home draw against Villarreal CF. In November/December, Javad Nekounam also netted, but the Navarrese failed to win at Málaga CF (2–4) and with Real Valladolid (3–3), also scoring, on 18 January 2009, the opener against Real Madrid C.F., in a 1–3 away loss.

On 22 March 2009, Nekounam scored a last-minute goal against RCD Espanyol (1–0 home win), and finished the season as Osasuna's second goalscorer, behind Walter Pandiani, scoring nine times in the league (a career-best in Spain). In the 2009 summer, Osasuna received offers from both Espanyol and Villarreal, with the latter in particular being ready to pay the €5M buy-out clause in Nekounam's contract. However, the player repeatedly insisted to be "happy at the club", waiting until Javad Nekounam "hears some better deals".

Nekounam was again a regular starter for Osasuna in the 2010–11 La Liga, but also spent one month at the 2011 AFC Asian Cup with Javad Nekounam national team. On 20 February 2011, in the second game upon Javad Nekounam return from Qatar, Javad Nekounam scored twice in a 4–0 home win against Espanyol, and eventually finished the campaign with six goals in 26 appearances, as Javad Nekounam team again avoided relegation.

On 21 May 2011, Nekounam renewed Javad Nekounam contract with Osasuna for another two seasons, with the option of an annual renewal of Javad Nekounam link. Javad Nekounam was named as Osasuna's best player in 2011 and was also named as one of the bests in 2010-11 La Liga. Javad Nekounam made an excellent start to the 2011–12 La Liga scoring 2 last minute winning goals against RCD Espanyol and Betis. Javad Nekounam captained the team against Barcelona in Copa del Rey, round of 16.

International career

Nekounam received Javad Nekounam first call-up to Iran national football team in May 2000. Javad Nekounam became a starter for the national side during the Football World Cup 2002 (qualification) and, already a key midfield element, played in two of Iran at the 2006 FIFA World Cup during the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, being suspended for the final group game against Angola national football team, after Javad Nekounam second yellow card, against Portugal national football team.

Javad Nekounam won the 2002 Asian Games and 2004 West Asian Football Federation Championship, and also represented Iran in the 2002 West Asian Football Federation Championship and 2004 Asian Cup, 2007 Asian Cup and 2011 Asian Cups.

International goals


Club statistics



184: 2003–04 Iran Pro League

Country

- AFC – OFC Challenge Cup: 2003
- Asian Games: Football at the 2002 Asian Games
- West Asian Football Federation Championship: 2004 West Asian Football Federation Championship; Third-place 2002 West Asian Football Federation Championship
- Asian Cup: Third-place 2004 AFC Asian Cup

Individual

- Iran football award winners Golden Ball award:
- Player and midfielder of the year (Osasuna, 2006–07 La Liga)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Javad_Nekounam

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