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Jesper Gronkjaer

Jesper Gronkjaer
 
Complete Name: Jesper Grønkjær
Nationality: Danish
Place of Birth: Nuuk, Denmark
Date of Birth: 12/08/1977
Height: 187 cm
Weight: 81 kg
National Team: Denmark
Current Club: VfB Stuttgart (Germany)
Position: Midfielder
 

Pictures

Picture 1 Picture 2 Picture 3

Club career history

AaB Aalborg (Denmark), Ajax Amsterdam (Holland), Chelsea FC (England), Atletico Madrid (Spain), Birmingham City (England), VfB Stuttgart (Germany)
 

Honours

2002 FA Cup Finals (Chelsea)
 

Biography

Jesper Grønkjær (born 12 August 1977 in Nuuk, Greenland) is a Danish football (soccer) player who currently plays for VfB Stuttgart. He is a pacey winger who can play either right or left midfield.

For Denmark, Grønkjær has been capped over 50 times. He played for his country at Euro 2000, the 2002 World Cup, and Euro 2004. He missed the opening game of Euro 2004 due to the death of his mother, but went to Portugal to join up with the Danish squad and scored against Bulgaria.

Grønkjær started with Aalborg in 1995, and played almost 100 matches, before moving on to Ajax Amsterdam 1998.

Grønkjær's big money move from Ajax for £7.5m to English Premiership club Chelsea FC raised some eyebrows with the Stamford Bridge faithful but the team were in need of wingers and some pace. Jesper certainly doesn't lack speed, and it was mentioned that earlier in his career he could have been a sprinter. His Chelsea career lasted for four years and his erratic form caused much frustration for his manager (Claudio Ranieri) and the Chelsea fans. His crossing was either pin-point or in the stands, and he would either be best on the ground or not get a touch. However, at his best he could tear past even the best full-backs and he scored some great goals.

His most notable moments came when playing in the UEFA Champions League semi-final against AS Monaco (when he scored from outside the box with a cross-come-shot) and scoring the goal that saw Chelsea qualify for that competition. Grønkjær scored against Liverpool on the final day of the 2002/2003 Premier League season at Stamford Bridge to give Chelsea a 2-1 victory and ultimately, fourth place in the league. He also scored a thunderous strike in front of 67,000 fans at Old Trafford against Manchester United in the penultimate game of the 2003/2004 season, the second of a three-game scoring streak. His final goal scored for Chelsea came the week after against Leeds, where he scored the winner with a header in the first half.

Grønkjær started the 2004/05 season at Birmingham City, after a summer transfer from fellow Premiership side Chelsea. However, after a poor start with Birmingham where he failed to adapt to the tactics of the team, he was transferred to Atlético de Madrid in January 2005 for a fee of around £2.5m. His spells with Birmingham and Atletico were a troubled time for Jesper, but in the summer of 2005 he transferred to german club VfB Stuttgart. Here he will look to get his career back on track at Stuttgart, with the club building a formidable squad under Giovanni Trapattoni. Grønkjær is playing alongside fellow Dane Jon Dahl Tomasson. However, despite the massive hype and expectations at the start of the season, the club struggled in mid-table and it was obvious the tactics of the coach didn't work optimally.

In the beginning of February 2006, Grønkjær and Jon Dahl Tomasson openly criticized coach Giovanni Trapattoni as "lacking the will to attack and win". The criticizm came from an amazing 12 drawn games out of 20, and although Trapattoni wanted to assert his authority and benched both players for the next game, he himself was fired on the very next day, on 9 February 2006.

Grønkjær now hopes for more attacking football and playing time under the new coach Armin Veh.
 

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