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Hatem Trabelsi

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Biography

1 Senior club appearances and goalscounted for the domestic league only andcorrect as of 21:51, 8 April 2007 (UTC).2 National team caps and goals correctas of 24 December 2006.* Appearances (Goals)

Hatem Trabelsi (Arabic: حاتم الطرابلسي, transliteration: Ḥātem Ṭrabelsī) (born January 25, 1977 in Ariana, Tunisia) is a Tunisian footballer, recently released by Manchester City, he is a right-sided defender or midfielder. He has previously played for Sfaxien and Ajax Amsterdam. He has represented the Tunisian national team in three World Cups, gaining a total of 61 caps before retiring from international football in 2006.

Trabelsi grew up in Sfax, and started his football career with is home town club Sfaxien, where he initially played as a forward. An injury crisis at Sfaxien resulted in Trabelsi playing as a stop-gap right-back, leading to him converting to defence and becoming the team's regular right-back. In 2001 Trabelsi moved to Europe, signing for Dutch club Ajax.

During the pre season of 2005, Hatem was given a trial period at Arsenal FC by Arsene Wenger. Seemingly, Hatem impressed the Gunners and a fee between Ajax and the North London outfit was agreed. With the transfer looking imminent, even the latest Pro Evolution Soccer game for gaming consoles included Trabelsi in the Arsenal roster. However, due to personal reasons Trabelsi never fully signed with Arsenal and soon returned home to Ajax.

In 2006 Trabelsi was linked with moves to several English clubs, and joined Manchester City on a free transfer on 10 August. Injury and work permit problems prevented him from making his debut until a month into the season, a substitute appearance against Reading on 11 September.

As of December 2006, the majority of Trabelsi's Manchester City appearances have been in a wide midfield role. He scored his first Manchester City goal against Manchester United with a left foot shot to beat Edwin van der Sar. Manchester City still lost the game 3-1. Trabelsi seemingly lost his starting right-back places to Micah Richards and Nedum Onuoha. Trabelsi didn't play a game after City's 1-0 win at Newcastle United in March, and he was released at the end of the season.In 2007, he was linked to several clubs after his release, but deals to Le Mans in France and the Italian side Lazio did not materialize.

Trabelsi made his international debut in May 1998, shortly before the 1998 World Cup. He also played in all of Tunisia's matches in the 2002 FIFA World Cup and 2006 FIFA World Cups, as well as the 2004 African Nations Cup, which Tunisia won. Following Tunisia's elimination from the 2006 World Cup after a 1-0 defeat to Ukraine, Trabelsi announced his retirement from international football at the age of 29, with 61 caps and one goal.

As a former winger, Trabelsi is very attack-minded for a full-back. He has a higher profile than most Tunisian internationals, and was described as Tunisia's star player in the run-up to the 2006 World Cup, albeit in a team which was not highly regarded. His strongest attributes are generally regarded to be his electric pace and his agility, though critics have sometimed questioned his commitment.



 


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