25 Şubat 2008 Pazartesi

Fabien Barthez

Fabien Alain Barthez (born 28 June 1971 in
Lavelanet, France) is the current goalkeeper for
the France|French Ligue 1 football
(soccer)|football club Olympique de Marseille.
With the France national football team|French
national team, he won the Wc|1998 and Ec2|2000.

He made his first division debut for Toulouse
FC|Toulouse on 21 September 1991, against AS
Nancy|Nancy. He joined Olympique de
Marseille|Olympique Marseille in 1992, and won
both the French championship and the UEFA
Champions League|Champions League at the end of
his first season in Marseille. However, OM would
be stripped of their domestic title, though not of
the Champions League crown, due to their
involvement in a domestic match fixing scandal,
and a year later (1994) would suffer a forced
relegation to the second division due to unrelated
financial irregularities.

On 26 May 1994, he won his first cap for France
national football team|France against Australia
national football team|Australia. In the 1998
World Cup triumph, he conceded two goals in seven
games in his home country. Barthez was also
well-known during the tournament for letting
teammate and good friend Laurent Blanc kiss his
head before the start of every match, supposedly
for good luck. Two years later, Barthez was again
the starter as his country won Euro 2000. He
played on France's World Cup team again in
Football World Cup 2002|2002, when they were
knocked out in the first round, and in Ec2|2004,
when they were knocked out in the quarterfinals.

In 1995, Barthez joined AS Monaco FC|AS Monaco and
won the France|French title in 1997 and 2000. He
joined Manchester United F.C.|Manchester United
for Pound Sterling|GBP 7.8 million in 2000 and won
FA Premier League|English Premier League
championships with United in 2001 and 2003.

Well known for being eccentric, he started out
well for Manchester United. However, numerous
blunders, including a notorious one against
Deportivo de La Coruña|Deportivo La Coruña, has
led to people making many jokes of him. Though he
is regarded as a goalkeeper with great skills, Sir
Alex Ferguson, manager of United, eventually
decided to replace him.

In October 2003, after United States|American
newcomer Tim Howard won the starting goalkeeper's
job from Barthez, United agreed to release Barthez
from his contract at Old Trafford (football)|Old
Trafford after the 2003-2004|04 season, and also
agreed to loan Barthez out to Olympique Marseille
for the remainder of that season. However, FIFA
blocked the loan deal on the grounds that it was
not agreed upon within the international transfer
window. The two clubs agreed on a loan deal after
the transfer window reopened on 1 January 2004,
and Barthez joined Olympique Marseille soon
afterwards. On 27 April, Olympique de Marseille
and Barthez agreed to a two-year contract which
will keep him at the club until spring 2006.

Barthez is currently involved in a controversy due
to his actions during a friendly match between OM
and a Morocco|Moroccan club on 12 February 2005.
With 10 minutes left, an OM player was red
card|sent off, and a brawl erupted between players
on the pitch. Barthez was reported for spitting on
the Moroccan referee (football)|referee. On 21
April, Barthez was summoned to a hearing before
the disciplinary committee of the French Football
Federation; the following day, he received a
six-month suspension, with the last three months
being suspended. In an unusual move, the federal
council of the FFF appealed the suspension,
arguing that the punishment should have been for a
minimum of six full months. Eventually, his
suspension was extended to six full months.

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