Sami Khedira (German pronunciation: [ˈsaːmiː xeˈdiːʁaː]; born 4 April 1987) is a German footballer who plays for Juventus and the German national team as a central midfielder.
He began his career at VfB Stuttgart, winning the Bundesliga in 2007, before moving to Real Madrid in 2010. In his five seasons in Spain, he won seven domestic and international trophies, including the UEFA Champions League in 2014. In 2015, he moved to Italian side Juventus on a free transfer, and immediately won the Serie A title in his first season with the club.
A full international for Germany since 2009, Khedira has earned over 50 caps for the national team. He was part of their squads which reached the semi-finals at the 2010 FIFA World Cup as well as the 2012 and 2016 UEFA European Football Championships, and also won the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
Before joining the youth team of VfB Stuttgart in 1995, he played at TV Oeffingen. In the first months of the 2006–07 season, he was called up into VfB's Bundesliga squad by manager Armin Veh. His debut followed on 1 October 2006 against Hertha BSC, replacing Antônio da Silva at the end of the 2–2 away draw. He scored his first two goals on 29 October in the 3–0 win against Schalke 04 at the Mercedes-Benz-Arena. On 29 January 2007 he signed his first professional contract at VfB, valid until June 2009. In the last game of the season on 19 May, Khedira scored the winner as Die Schwaben came from behind to defeat Energie Cottbus 2–1 and became champions for the first time in 15 years.
On 9 July 2008, he extended his contract until the summer of 2011. In the ensuing season, he scored a career-best 7 league goals in 27 games, including both in a 2–2 draw against Bayern Munich on 13 December.
On 30 July 2010, Khedira moved to Real Madrid for an undisclosed fee, signing a contract until 2015. Khedira made his debut on 13 August in a friendly match against FC Bayern Munich, which Real Madrid won 4–2 on penalties for the Franz-Beckenbauer-Cup. His league debut came sixteen days later, in a 0–0 away draw against Mallorca. He made 40 appearances across his first season in Spain and won his first club honour on 20 April 2011 as his team won the Copa del Rey final against El Clásico rivals FC Barcelona.
He scored his first competitive goal for Real Madrid in the Champions League, on 18 October 2011 against Olympique Lyonnais. He scored his first Copa del Rey goal against Málaga CF in a 3–2 home win when Real Madrid were trailing behind 0–2, and his first league goal against RCD Espanyol in a 5–0 home win.
On 21 April 2012, Khedira scored his second league goal, against Barcelona; the goal was Real Madrid's 108th of the season in the league, breaking the previous La Liga record of 107, also set by them in the 1989–90 season.
On 9 June 2015, Italian side Juventus announced that Khedira had signed a four-year deal on a free transfer. The move was completed on 1 July, at the start of the 2015–16 season.
On 1 August, Khedira was stretchered off the pitch after just 25 minutes while playing in a pre-season friendly match against Marseille with a hamstring injury and was ruled out of the Supercoppa Italiana a week later against Lazio. Two days later Juventus confirmed that it was actually a muscle tear in his right thigh, and that he would be sidelined for approximately two months. He was called back to action on 30 September as he started in a Champions League group stage match in a 2–0 win over Sevilla. On 4 October, Khedira made his Serie A debut, starting and scoring the final goal of a 3–1 home win against Bologna in the 63rd minute.
On 20 March 2016, Khedira scored his fourth goal of the league season in a 4–1 win at Torino in the Derby della Mole, but was given a straight red card for dissent later on.
On 20 August, Khedira opened the 2016–17 Serie A season with a goal in a 2–1 home win over Fiorentina. A week later he scored the only goal in a 1–0 away win over Lazio in the league.
Youth teams and debut
Khedira has appeared 30 times in several German youth national teams, he captained the side during the European Under-21 Championship 2009, which Germany has won in the final against England 4–0.
Khedira made his debut for the senior national squad on 5 September 2009 in a friendly match against South Africa. He was substituted on in the 73rd minute for Simon Rolfes.
World Cup 2010
He was called up to the Germany squad for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa by coach Joachim Löw. Filling in for injured Michael Ballack as Central midfielder, he played in all seven matches, and was only substituted twice. After appearances in five friendlies prior to the World Cup, he made his first competitive match against Australia in Germany's first group game. On 10 July 2010, with his first international goal on senior level, he scored Germany's 16th and last goal of the tournament in the third place match against Uruguay. This game-winning header eight minutes from time ensured the final 3–2 score and won the young German team the bronze medal.
Khedira was in the starting lineup in eight qualification matches for Euro 2012, helping Germany top their group with a record ten wins out of ten matches. He featured in every minute of their run to the semi-finals, scoring in the 4–2 quarter-final win over Greece at the PGE Arena Gdańsk, and was selected for the Team of the Tournament.
World Cup 2014
Khedira tore his ACL in his right knee in a friendly match against Italy on 15 November 2013 and was estimated be out for around six months, which put his participation at the 2014 FIFA World Cup into question. However, he recovered in time to be named in Germany's squad for the tournament, and was selected to start in the team's opening match, a 4–0 win against Portugal. On 8 July, he scored Germany's fifth goal in the 7–1 semi-final defeat of Brazil. He was injured during the pre-match warmup for the Final against Argentina, and was replaced by Christoph Kramer, as Germany eventually won 1–0 after extra time.
Khedira was named to Joachim Löw's 23-man Germany squad for UEFA Euro 2016. On 2 July, he was forced off after sustaining an injury in the first half of the quarter-finals against Italy, and was ruled out for the remainder of the tournament; Germany won the match 6–5 in the resulting penalty shoot-out, following a 1–1 draw after extra-time. As in the previous edition of the tournament, Germany were once again eliminated in the semi-finals of the competition, following a 2–0 defeat to hosts France on 7 July.
Style of play
Khedira is considered a dynamic and well-rounded midfielder, with good awareness and "flawless aerial ability", who can cover a lot of ground efficiently, recover the ball and quickly join in the team's attacking plays; he is also capable of being a goal threat with his heading accuracy and powerful mid-range shooting. A physically strong, energetic, and tactically intelligent player, he is also known for his ball-winning abilities, work-rate, and vision, as well as his solid technique and reliable passing, which allow him to play anywhere in midfield; although usually a central midfielder, he has also been deployed as a defensive midfielder or as a box-to-box midfielder, due to his stamina and versatility.
Khedira was born in Stuttgart. His father is Tunisian and his mother is German. Sami's younger brother Rani plays for RB Leipzig who has represented the Germany U19 team.
Khedira has been dating German fashion model Lena Gercke since May 2011. Both were featured in a February 2012 GQ cover story.
- As of 29 January 2017
|Stuttgart II||2004–05||Regionalliga Süd||5||0||—||5||0|
|Real Madrid||2010–11||La Liga||25||0||7||0||8||0||—||40||0|
- 1.^ Includes German Cup, Spanish Cup, and Italian Cup.
- 2.^ Includes, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League/UEFA Cup, and UEFA Intertoto Cup.
- 3.^ Includes German League Cup, Spanish Super Cup, UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup.
- As of 11 November 2016
|Germany national team|
- Scores and results list Germany's goal tally first.
|1.||10 July 2010||Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth, South Africa||Uruguay||3–2||3–2||2010 FIFA World Cup|
|2.||22 June 2012||Stadion Energa Gdańsk, Gdańsk, Poland||Greece||2–1||4–2||UEFA Euro 2012|
|3.||6 February 2013||Stade de France, Saint-Denis, France||France||2–1||2–1||Friendly|
|4.||11 October 2013||RheinEnergieStadion, Cologne, Germany||Republic of Ireland||1–0||3–0||2014 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|5.||26 June 2014||Mineirão, Belo Horizonte, Brazil||Brazil||5–0||7–1||2014 FIFA World Cup|
|6.||11 October 2016||HDI Arena, Hanover, Germany||Northern Ireland||2–0||2–0||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|7.||11 November 2016||San Marino Stadium, Serravalle, San Marino||San Marino||1–0||8–0||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
- Bundesliga: 2006–07
- DFB-Pokal: Runner-up: 2006–07
- Real Madrid
- UEFA Champions League: 2013–14
- FIFA Club World Cup: 2014
- La Liga: 2011–12; Runner-up: 2010–11, 2012–13
- Copa del Rey: 2010–11, 2013–14; Runner-up: 2012–13
- Supercopa de España: 2012; Runner-up: 2011
- Serie A: 2015–16
- Coppa Italia: 2015–16
- FIFA World Cup: Winners 2014; Third Place: 2010
- Germany U-21
- UEFA U–21 Championship: 2009
- Order of Merit of Baden-Württemberg: 2016
- UEFA Euro Team of the Tournament: 2012
- ^ "S. Khedira". soccerway.com. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
- ^ "Sami Khedira" (in German). fussballdaten.de. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
- "Der Traum ist wahr: Real gewinnt "La Décima"" (in German). kicker.de. 24 May 2014. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
- Gartenschläger, Lars (6 June 2013). "Khedira, Özil, Neuer – Aufstieg der Euro-Helden" (in German). welt.de. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
- "Khedira mit Verdienstorden geehrt" (in German). sport1.de. 31 July 2016. Retrieved 3 August 2016.
- "Ten Spain players in Team of the Tournament". UEFA.com. Retrieved 5 October 2016.