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Andreas Christensen

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Andreas Christensen
Christensen with Chelsea in 2018
Personal information
Full name Andreas Bødtker Christensen[1]
Date of birth (1996-04-10) 10 April 1996 (age 28)[2]
Place of birth Lillerød, Denmark
Height 1.87 m (6 ft 2 in)[3]
Position(s) Centre-back, defensive midfielder
Team information
Current team
Barcelona
Number 15
Youth career
2000–2006 Skjold Birkerød
2006–2012 Brøndby
2012–2014 Chelsea
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2014–2022 Chelsea 93 (0)
2015–2017Borussia Mönchengladbach (loan) 62 (5)
2022– Barcelona 53 (3)
International career
2011–2012 Denmark U16 2 (0)
2011–2012 Denmark U17 18 (5)
2013 Denmark U19 2 (0)
2013–2015 Denmark U21 21 (1)
2015– Denmark 73 (3)
*Club domestic league appearances and goals, correct as of 22:08, 26 May 2024 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals, correct as of 29 June 2024

Andreas Bødtker Christensen (born 10 April 1996) is a Danish professional footballer who plays as a centre-back or defensive midfielder for La Liga club Barcelona and the Denmark national team.

Christensen began his career at Skjold Birkerød and later joined Brøndby. He joined Chelsea at the age of 15 in February 2012, making his professional debut in October 2014. After a two-year loan to German club Borussia Mönchengladbach, he returned to Chelsea in 2017, winning the FA Cup, UEFA Europa League and UEFA Champions League with the club. In 2022, he was signed by Barcelona, where he won La Liga in his debut season.

Christensen made his full international debut for Denmark in June 2015, and represented the nation at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, UEFA Euro 2020, the 2022 World Cup and Euro 2024.

Club career

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Chelsea

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Early career

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Christensen playing for Chelsea in 2013

Christensen was born in Lillerød, Allerød Municipality.[4] The son of former Brøndby goalkeeper Sten Christensen, he began his career with Skjold Birkerød and later joined Brøndby. He spent eight years there, attracting the interest of Europe's elite clubs including Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City, and Bayern Munich. On 7 February 2012, Christensen signed for Chelsea on a free transfer, near the end of André Villas-Boas' tenure as the club's manager. Upon joining the London side, Christensen said: "I have chosen Chelsea because they play the kind of football I like.”[5]

Christensen was first included in a Chelsea senior squad for their last game of the 2012–13 season on 19 May 2013, but did not feature in the match, which ended a 2–1 home win over Everton in Rafael Benítez's last match as manager.[6] In the pre-season tour of the United States before the 2013–14 season, he was part of the senior team squad and signed a professional contract thereafter.[7]

2014–15 season

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He made his professional debut on 28 October 2014, playing only 79 minutes at right-back as Chelsea won 2–1 away to Shrewsbury Town in the fourth round of the League Cup.[8] Christensen did not play again until 24 January 2015, when he was utilised in the same position for Chelsea's 4–2 home defeat to League One team Bradford City in the FA Cup fourth round.[9]

Although Christensen played no further part in the campaign, Chelsea won the League Cup with a 2–0 victory over rival club Tottenham Hotspur in the final. When asked who was man of the match for the final, manager José Mourinho said, "Man of the match was Andreas Christensen who played well against Shrewsbury. There are more than John Terry (the official Man of the match for the final) because we are a team. I am proud of the guys."[10]

On 13 April 2015, Christensen played for Chelsea U19 in the final of the 2014–15 UEFA Youth League against Shakhtar Donetsk in Switzerland and although he scored an own goal to cancel out Izzy Brown's opener in the first-half, Chelsea still ended with a 3–2 victory.[11] He made his Premier League debut against Sunderland on 24 May, replacing Mikel John Obi with 12 minutes remaining in a 3–1 home victory.[12] Although Christensen only made one league appearances out of the whole season, Mourinho stated that he would receive a replica medal from his club for his contributions this season.[13]

2015–2017: Loan to Borussia Mönchengladbach

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On 10 July 2015, Christensen joined Borussia Mönchengladbach on a two-year loan deal from Chelsea.[14][15] He made his debut on 10 August against FC St. Pauli in the first round of the DFB-Pokal, winning 4–1.[16] Five days later, Christensen made his Bundesliga debut in a 4–0 loss at Borussia Dortmund.[17] He scored his first professional goals on 5 February 2016, a brace in a 5–1 win over Werder Bremen at Borussia-Park.[18]

After an impressive debut season, Christensen was voted the team's Player of the Season, ahead of Granit Xhaka, the team captain.[19] After the success of his first season, Mönchengladbach made multiple attempts to make his loan permanent during the 2016 summer transfer window, although it was reported that Chelsea rejected the £14.25 million bid from the German club.[20]

In the 2016–17 UEFA Europa League, Christensen scored the final goal of a 4–2 win away to Fiorentina in the second leg of the last 32 to assure a 4–3 aggregate win.[21] He was on target again in the next round against neighbours Schalke, who won on away goals after a 3–3 aggregate draw.[22]

2017–2022: Return to Chelsea

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Christensen playing for Chelsea in 2017

On 12 August 2017, Christensen made his first appearance for Chelsea following his two-year loan spell in Germany, coming off the bench following captain Gary Cahill being sent off, in Chelsea's 3–2 opening day home defeat against Burnley.[23] Eight days later, he made his first Premier League start in a 2–1 victory over Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley Stadium.[24] On 9 January 2018, Christensen signed a new four-and-half-year deal with Chelsea running until 2022, after establishing himself in the first team.[25] Christensen made 40 appearances for the Blues in 2017–18, including three in the victorious FA Cup campaign. However, a back injury meant he was not involved in the final.[26] Prior to the season's finish, he was awarded the club's Young Player of the Year award.[27]

New manager Maurizio Sarri preferred to pair David Luiz and Antonio Rüdiger in central defence, and by February 2019 Christensen had made 15 appearances, only two of which in the league. However, he ruled out wanting to leave the club.[28]

On 29 May 2021, Christensen replaced the injured Thiago Silva in the 39th minute as he won his first-ever UEFA Champions League after Chelsea won 1–0 against Manchester City in the 2021 UEFA Champions League Final in Porto.[29] On 20 October 2021, Christensen scored his first goal for Chelsea in a 4–0 win against Malmö FF in the group stage of the Champions League.[30]

Barcelona

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On 4 July 2022, Christensen signed for La Liga club Barcelona in a free transfer on a four-year contract with a buyout clause of €500 million.[31] On 13 August, he made his debut in 0–0 draw against Rayo Vallecano in the league.[32] He began playing more consistently as the season progressed, and eventually formed a defensive partnership alongside Ronald Araújo, helping Barcelona keep the most clean sheets (16) in all of Europe's top 5 leagues.[33][34] He was named Danish Football Player of the Year for 2023, having won the La Liga title and the Supercopa de España with his club.[35]

Following poor performances from teammate Oriol Romeu and poor general defensive performances, culminating in narrow wins and a shock 3–5 home defeat to Villarreal, Xavi moved Christensen to defensive midfielder, which managed to improve Barcelona's form, including emphatic victories against Napoli in the Champions League and rivals Atlético Madrid.

On 10 April 2024, he scored his first Champions League goal with Barcelona, after coming off the bench in the second half, which granted his club a 3–2 away win against Paris Saint-Germain in the quarter-final first leg.[36]

International career

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On 8 June 2015, Christensen made his senior international debut for Denmark in a 2–1 home friendly win against Montenegro at the Viborg Stadium, as a 69th-minute substitute for Pierre-Emile Højbjerg.[37] On 24 March 2016, Christensen made his first Denmark start in a 2–1 victory over Iceland, playing the full 90 minutes of the friendly at the MCH Arena.[38]

Christensen played six matches in Denmark's successful 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification campaign. On 14 November 2017 he scored his first international goal to equalise in a 5–1 win over the Republic of Ireland in the second leg of the play-off.[39] Manager Åge Hareide called him up for the final tournament in Russia.[40] He partnered Simon Kjær in central defence, having been able to play in that position due to Andreas Bjelland's absence through injury, but played in defensive midfield in the final group game against France.[41] In the last 16 against Croatia, he remained in midfield to combat the opponents' strength in that sector, but made an error that allowed Mario Mandžukić to equalise as Croatia went on to win on penalties.[42]

Andreas Christensen was one of the key players for Denmark during their very successful UEFA Euro 2020 campaign, as he played all six games.[43] On 21 June 2021, Christensen scored a thunderous goal from long range against Russia in a 4–1 win that helped Denmark advance to the knockout-phase of the tournament.[44] After having defeated both Wales and the Czech Republic to get there, Denmark lost to England in the semi-final 2–1 after extra time at Wembley Stadium.[45]

Style of play

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Christensen is a centre-back and is known for his calmness in possession and precise passing, as well as his aerial dominance. In 2018, Chelsea manager Antonio Conte said the Dane had displayed "great maturity" adding that he has "a lot of trust in Christensen. This player is a player for the present for Chelsea, and for Chelsea's future for 10 or 14 years. He can also become the captain of this team in the future".[46] In appreciation of his playing talents, fans have also labelled him as the 'Danish Maldini',[47] drawing comparisons with the Italian defender Paolo Maldini.[citation needed]

Career statistics

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Club

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As of match played 26 May 2024
Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
Club Season League National cup[a] League cup[b] Europe Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Chelsea 2014–15[48] Premier League 1 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 3 0
2017–18[49] Premier League 27 0 3 0 4 0 6[c] 0 0 0 40 0
2018–19[50] Premier League 8 0 2 0 4 0 15[d] 0 0 0 29 0
2019–20[51] Premier League 21 0 2 0 0 0 4[c] 0 1[e] 0 28 0
2020–21[52] Premier League 17 0 3 0 0 0 7[c] 0 27 0
2021–22[53] Premier League 19 0 3 1 1 0 8[c] 1 3[f] 0 34 2
Total 93 0 14 1 10 0 40 1 4 0 161 2
Borussia Mönchengladbach (loan) 2015–16[54] Bundesliga 31 3 3 0 5[c] 0 39 3
2016–17[54] Bundesliga 31 2 3 0 9[g] 2 43 4
Total 62 5 6 0 14 2 82 7
Barcelona 2022–23[54] La Liga 23 1 2 0 5[h] 0 2[i] 0 32 1
2023–24[54] La Liga 30 2 3 0 7[c] 1 2[i] 0 42 3
Total 53 3 5 0 12 1 4 0 74 4
Career total 208 8 25 1 10 0 66 4 8 0 317 13
  1. ^ Includes DFB-Pokal, FA Cup, Copa del Rey
  2. ^ Includes Football League Cup/EFL Cup
  3. ^ a b c d e f Appearances in UEFA Champions League
  4. ^ Appearances in UEFA Europa League
  5. ^ Appearance in UEFA Super Cup
  6. ^ One appearance in UEFA Super Cup, two appearances in FIFA Club World Cup
  7. ^ Six appearances in UEFA Champions League, three appearances and two goals in UEFA Europa League
  8. ^ Three appearances in UEFA Champions League, two appearances in UEFA Europa League
  9. ^ a b Appearances in Supercopa de España

International

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As of match played 29 June 2024[55]
Appearances and goals by national team and year
National team Year Apps Goals
Denmark 2015 2 0
2016 8 0
2017 4 1
2018 9 0
2019 8 0
2020 7 0
2021 16 1
2022 7 1
2023 7 0
2024 5 0
Total 73 3
As of match played 29 June 2024
Denmark's score listed first, score column indicates score after each Christensen goal.[55]
List of international goals scored by Andreas Christensen
No. Date Venue Cap Opponent Score Result Competition Ref.
1 14 November 2017 Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Ireland 14  Republic of Ireland 1–1 5–1 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification [56]
2 21 June 2021 Parken Stadium, Copenhagen, Denmark 44  Russia 3–1 4–1 UEFA Euro 2020 [57]
3 26 November 2022 Stadium 974, Doha, Qatar 60  France 1–1 1–2 2022 FIFA World Cup [58]

Honours

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Chelsea Youth

Chelsea

Barcelona

Individual

References

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  1. ^ "Squad List: FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2021: Chelsea FC" (PDF). FIFA. 9 February 2022. p. 1. Retrieved 24 April 2022.
  2. ^ "Andreas Christensen". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 26 August 2018.
  3. ^ "Andreas Christensen". FC Barcelona. Retrieved 27 December 2022.
  4. ^ Heneage, Kristan (21 April 2016). "Andreas Christensen: Chelsea's thriving loanee who's attracting Bayern and Barça". FourFourTwo. Retrieved 26 August 2018.
  5. ^ "Chelsea complete signing of 15-year-old Brondby defender Andreas Christensen on a free transfer". Goal. 7 February 2012. Retrieved 7 February 2012.
  6. ^ Phillips, Owen (15 May 2013). "Chelsea 2–1 Everton". BBC Sport. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  7. ^ "Christensen Chelsea Profile". Chelsea F.C. 7 February 2012. Archived from the original on 15 August 2014. Retrieved 7 February 2012.
  8. ^ Chowdhury, Saj (28 October 2014). "Shrewsbury 1–2 Chelsea". BBC Sport. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
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  15. ^ "Borussia bring in Chelsea's Andreas Christensen on loan". Borussia Mönchengladbach. 10 July 2015. Archived from the original on 12 July 2015. Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  16. ^ "St. Pauli vs. Borussia M'gladbach 1–4", Soccerway, 10 August 2015
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  35. ^ "Andreas Christensen named Danish player of the year". FC Barcelona. 7 January 2024.
  36. ^ "Paris Saint Germain 2–3 Barcelona". BBC Sport. 10 April 2024.
  37. ^ Olsen, Allan (8 June 2015). "Pierre-Emile er vores panzerwagen!" [Pierre-Emile is our tank!]. Ekstra Bladet (in Danish). Copenhagen. Retrieved 8 June 2015.
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  73. ^ "Annual awards 2018 – Kante is no.1". Chelsea F.C. 10 May 2018. Retrieved 26 August 2018.
  74. ^ "Andreas Christensen er Årets Mandlige Fodboldspiller" [Andreas Christensen is the Male Football Player of the Year]. Danish Football Association (in Danish). 6 January 2024. Retrieved 11 January 2024.
  75. ^ "Andreas Christensen er Årets Mandlige Fodboldspiller 2023" [Andreas Christensen is Male Footballer of the Year 2023]. The Danish Player Association (in Danish). 6 January 2024. Retrieved 11 January 2024.
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