|Full name||Khvicha Kvaratskhelia|
|Date of birth||12 February 2001|
|Place of birth||Tbilisi, Georgia|
|Height||1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)|
|2019||→ Lokomotiv Moscow (loan)||7||(1)|
*Club domestic league appearances and goals, correct as of 2 September 2023 (UTC)|
‡ National team caps and goals, correct as of 02:10, 9 September 2023 (UTC)
Khvicha Kvaratskhelia (Georgian: ხვიჩა კვარაცხელია, romanized: khvicha k'varatskhelia; born 12 February 2001), also known as Kvara, is a Georgian professional footballer who plays as a left winger for Serie A club Napoli and the Georgia national team.
Kvaratskhelia started his senior career playing for Dinamo Tbilisi at age 16, before departing to Rustavi where he spent half a season. During his combined three-year tenure at Lokomotiv Moscow and Rubin Kazan, Kvaratskhelia won two consecutive Russian Premier League Best Young Player awards. Following a short spell at Dinamo Batumi, Kvaratskhelia signed for Napoli in 2022, and in his debut season guided the club to a record UEFA Champions League campaign and a first Serie A title in 33 years, finishing as the league's top assist provider. This saw him named Serie A Most Valuable Player and the Champions League's Young Player of the Season.
At international level, Kvaratskhelia established himself in all national youth teams, becoming a key player under different managers. He became an integral part of the national team after joining it in 2019. Kvaratskhelia has been credited with popularizing interest in football in Georgia for his achievements with Napoli, alongside former legend of A.C. Milan Kakha Kaladze (who also gave significant praises of Khvicha himself), whose performance inspired Kvaratskhelia to follow the path.
Coming through the youth system, Kvaratskhelia began his senior career at Dinamo Tbilisi in 2017, making his senior debut against Kolkheti-1913 Poti, coming on as a 62nd minute substitute in a 1–1 draw on 29 September 2017. In total, Kvaratskhelia made five appearances in all competitions for Dinamo Tbilisi, scoring his first goal in a 1–0 win away to Shukura Kobuleti on 19 November 2017.
Due to his performances for Georgia's under-17 team, Kvaratskhelia became the first winner of the newly introduced Aleksandre Chivadze golden medal in 2017, awarded annually by Georgian Football Federation to talented young players. The following year he received a silver medal for his displays for Georgia's under-19's.
In March 2018, Kvaratskhelia left Dinamo Tbilisi as a result of a contract dispute and subsequently signed for Rustavi on a free transfer. In April 2018, Kvaratskhelia was the subject of interest from German champions Bayern Munich and was in attendance for Bayern's 0–0 draw against Sevilla in the UEFA Champions League quarter-final. During the 2018 Erovnuli Liga season, Kvaratskhelia scored three goals across 18 appearances for Rustavi.
On 15 February 2019, Kvaratskhelia joined Russian Premier League (RPL) club Lokomotiv Moscow on loan. He made his league debut on 10 March as an 86th-minute substitute for Jefferson Farfán against Anzhi Makhachkala. On 1 July, Lokomotiv Moscow announced that Kvaratskhelia had left the club after his loan expired. Following the loss of Kvaratskhelia, Lokomotiv Moscow manager Yuri Semin said he was very disappointed after failing to agree on a permanent transfer with Kvaratskhelia as Semin considered him extremely talented.
On 6 July 2019, Kvaratskhelia signed a five-year deal with Rubin Kazan. He played his first game on 15 July against his previous club Lokomotiv, coming on as a substitute in the second half and scoring the equalizer in a 1–1 draw. Kvaratskhelia was named as best player of the match by Rubin fans on the official site of the club.
Overall, his purchase was hailed by several Russian media outlets as the main transfer success for Rubin, who saw the player's market value increased five times in a single season between June 2019 and June 2020. Based on the votes among Rubin supporters, Kvaratskhelia won Player of the Month nomination four times in 2020–21, namely in August, September, October and April.
On 7 March 2022, FIFA announced that, due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, foreign players in Russia could unilaterally suspend their contracts until 30 June, and were allowed to sign with clubs outside of Russia until the same date. On 24 March 2022, Rubin Kazan announced that Kvaratskhelia's contract had been suspended. On the same day, he joined Dinamo Batumi of Georgia.
Kvaratskhelia took part in 11 league matches with Dinamo Batumi, scoring eight times and providing two assists. Erovnuli Liga named him the best player of the second round of the season, which coincided with the period between April and July.
On 1 July 2022, Serie A side Napoli confirmed the signing of Kvaratskhelia on a deal lasting until 2027 from Dinamo Batumi for a reported fee of €10–12 million. Kvaratskhelia's debut for the club came on 15 August, in the first matchday of Serie A against Hellas Verona; he scored and assisted in a 5–2 victory. He scored twice in the following matchday against Monza on 21 August, netting his first Serie A brace in a 4–0 win. Following these games, Kvaratskhelia topped the Serie A top scorers' list, becoming the first player in Napoli's history to score three goals in the two opening league matches. Furthermore, he was named Serie A Player of the Month in August 2022.
On 4 October, he scored his first Champions League goal in a 6–1 away win over Ajax. With another goal and an assist in the return leg a week later, Kvaratskhelia was named Man of the Match, and included in the competition team of the week. With three goals and an assist during the month of February 2023, Kvaratskhelia was named Serie A Player of the Month for a second time, becoming the first player to win the award multiple times in the same season. The next month brought him more recognition when he received another Serie A Player of the Month award, a similar trophy from Italian Footballers' Association and the Serie A Goal of the Month and Serie A Goal of the Season awards for a stunner scored in a 2–0 win against Atalanta on 11 March.
On 4 May, following a 1–1 draw with Udinese, Napoli were confirmed as Serie A champions for the first time in 33 years. He finished the season as top assist provider with 10 assists and scored 12 goals, being awarded the Serie A MVP award at the end of the season, and the Champions League young player of the season.
Kvaratskhelia made his debut for the Georgia national team on 7 June 2019, as a starter in a Euro 2020 qualifier against Gibraltar. On 14 October 2020, he scored his first senior international goal in a 1–1 UEFA Nations League draw with North Macedonia. On 28 March 2021, Kvaratskhelia scored against Spain, followed by another goal three days later against Greece. On 11 November 2021, Kvaratskhelia's brace helped Georgia win over Sweden.
He scored three times in four games of the first phase of the 2022–23 Nations League, and topped the list of players in two nominations, including in the overall ranking. In the remaining two autumn games Kvaratskhelia added two more goals, which made him the most prolific Georgian player during this tournament. whoscored.com named him in the Best XI both in June and September and awarded him the highest seasonal rating point (8.2) among Group C team players.
Khvicha is the son of former footballer Badri Kvaratskhelia. He has two brothers, and his younger brother Tornike (b. 2010) also plays football. He has been nicknamed "Kvaradona" after the Napoli legend Diego Maradona, with both of them having very similar dribbling styles.
|Dinamo Tbilisi||2017||Erovnuli Liga||4||1||1||0||—||—||5||1|
|Lokomotiv Moscow (loan)||2018–19||Russian Premier League||7||1||3||0||—||—||10||1|
|Rubin Kazan||2019–20||Russian Premier League||27||3||1||0||—||—||28||3|
|2020–21||Russian Premier League||23||4||0||0||—||—||23||4|
|2021–22||Russian Premier League||19||2||1||0||2[a]||0||—||22||2|
|Dinamo Batumi||2022||Erovnuli Liga||11||8||—||—||—||11||8|
- Scores and results list Georgia's goal tally first, score column indicates score after each Kvaratskhelia goal.
|1||14 October 2020||Toše Proeski Arena, Skopje, North Macedonia||North Macedonia||1–0||1–1||2020–21 UEFA Nations League C|
|2||28 March 2021||Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena, Tbilisi, Georgia||Spain||1–0||1–2||2022 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|3||31 March 2021||Toumba Stadium, Thessaloniki, Greece||Greece||1–1||1–1|
|4||11 November 2021||Batumi Stadium, Batumi, Georgia||Sweden||1–0||2–0|
|6||2 June 2022||Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena, Tbilisi, Georgia||Gibraltar||1–0||4–0||2022–23 UEFA Nations League C|
|7||5 June 2022||Huvepharma Arena, Razgrad, Bulgaria||Bulgaria||4–1||5–2|
|8||9 June 2022||Toše Proeski Arena, Skopje, North Macedonia||North Macedonia||2–0||3–0|
|9||23 September 2022||Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena, Tbilisi, Georgia||North Macedonia||2–0||2–0|
|10||26 September 2022||Victoria Stadium, Gibraltar||Gibraltar||1–0||2–1|
- Russian Premier League Young Player of the Season: 2019–20, 2020–21
- Russian Premier League Left Winger of the Season: 2020–21
- Georgian Footballer of the Year: 2020, 2021, 2022
- UEFA Champions League Young Player of the Season: 2022–23
- Serie A Player of the Month: August 2022, February 2023, March 2023
- Serie A Goal of the Month: March 2023
- Serie A Most Valuable Player: 2022–23
- Serie A Team of the Season: 2022–23
- Serie A top assist provider: 2022–23
- Serie A Goal of the Season: 2022–23
- Ballon d'or nominee 2023
- Khvicha Kvaratskhelia at Soccerway
- Khvicha Kvaratskhelia at WorldFootball.net
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