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Antar Yahia


Professional Football Player

More by user: mchironda
Created: 6th Apr 2010
Modified: 13th May 2010
Professional Information
Professional Areas:
Bochum VFL and Algerian National Team
Working primarily in:

Biographical Information
Antar Yahia
(At a Glance)
Date of Birth: Mar/21/1982
Gender: male
Place of Origin: Algeria

Antar Yahia is a French-born Algerian professional football player who currently plays as a defender for German Bundesliga club VfL Bochum and the Algerian national team.

Yahia alongside Faouzi Chaouchi is considered to be a national hero by many Algerian's as he was the scorer of the goal that put them into their first World Cup finals since 1986 at the expense of bitter rivals Egypt, he struck in the 40th minute of the play-off by scoring a Marco van Basten-esque goal.
Early life

Born on 21 March 1982 in Mulhouse, France. Yahia lived in Algeria briefly during his childhood before returning to France. His family is native from Sedrata (Souk Ahras) in Algeria
[edit] Club career

At the age of 14 Yahia joined the football boarding school of FC Sochaux (France).

Yahia started his professional career at Corsican side SC Bastia after he returned from an unsuccessful time at Internazionale. After four successful years on Corsica, Yahia was transferred to OGC Nice. In the first season he played most of the games but at the end he became a substitute. So he decided to move on to another club.

In 2007 English club Leeds United and German side VfL Bochum were interested in Yahia him. He did some training exercises at both clubs and both wanted to buy him. Yahia decided to move to the club from the Bundesliga. On January 30, 2007 he played his first Bundesliga match for VfL Bochum against Bayern Munich In a short period he became an important player at the club and has currently a safe place in the central defense. When the loan contract was expired VfL Bochum bought Yahia for 800.000 Euro. He has got a contract until 2011 at the club and earned on 4 January 2010 the Algerian Player of the Year 2009 award.

Yahia was called up to play for the France-Under 18 squad in 2000, a time when the team was trying to qualify for the 2001 European Championship to be held in Finland in July 2001. Yahia played his first game alongside Nadir Belhadj against Germany which they won 4-2. In his second game the team had to win if they had any chance of qualifying for the European Championship, they failed to beat the Netherlands and by doing so they were unable to qualify, the final score against the Netherlands was 2-1. The France-Under 18 side finished bottom of Group 9, which consisted of France, Germany and the Netherlands.

Yahia was the first footballer to profit from the change in FIFA's rules on international eligibility when he made his debut for Algeria in an Olympic Games qualifier against Ghana. He managed to score the only goal of the 1-0 win over Ghana with a 19th minute header for the Algerian under-23 side in Blida. Saâdane promoted Yahia to the senior national team after his impressive performance on his debut for Algeria's under-23 side in the Olympic qualifier against Ghana for the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens.

Yahia started his senior international career on the 15th of January 2004 against Mali in a friendly in preparation for the 2004 African Cup of Nations hosted in Tunisia. During this continental competition Yahia played a part in all the group games including the 2-1 victory over Egypt and the 1-1 draw against Cameroon, the team progressed from group C alongside Cameroon to the quarter final where Algeria lost to Morocco 3-1 in extra time.

In November 2009, the Algerian team flew out to Cairo for the final world cup qualifier game, when travelling from the airport to the hotel the coach came under attack as Egyptians hurled rocks at the bus, shattering windows and showering the players and staff with broken glass several players were reported to be injured Yahia was understandably furious when they finally arrived to the hotel and said the following “They struck our bus with large bricks,” said a distraught Antar Yahia. "Players have open head wounds with blood. We were lying down in the bus. All the windows were broken. It makes you fear for your life. As long as our lives are not assured we’re afraid to play this match." Yahia then went on to say that the security guards dispatched for the team did nothing in response to the attacks. “They let them do it. You can’t launch five kilo rocks from 50 meters. They let them do it and watched. It’s shameful. In our home game we welcomed them with flowers,” he continued.

The game was not cancelled and went a head as planned, Yahia had played the whole game but it just wasn't meant to be as Egypt scored a second goal in the final minutes of the game the final result was 2-0 to Egypt which meant they had the same goal difference and points. So a tie-breaker had to be played in Khartoum, Sudan. On the 18th of November 2009 Yahia scored in the 40th minute giving Algeria a 1-0 lead against the Pharaohs, in the 67th minute Yahia went off injured but the only goal scored in the play off by Yahia against Egypt was enough to secure Algeria's place in the 2010 World Cup.

In December 2009, Yahia was selected by Saâdane to play in the 2010 African Cup of Nations hosted in Angola, but due to an injury Yahia did not play any of the group games.

On saturday the 16th of January 2010 in Luanda, Angola Yahia was presented the award of best arab player of 2009 by winning a poll created by the Arab television channel MBC. One million people participated in the poll, Yahia gained the majority of the votes due to his astonishing performance and goal against Egypt in the World Cup play-off match with 48% outperforming his competitors respectively, Egyptian Mohamed Aboutrika came second, with 20.25% of votes while Algerian Rafik Saifi gained 11% and was placed third overall in the poll. The award handing over ceremony was held in the place of the Algerian delegation residence; in Continental Hotel, in the presence of all players and staff

Source : Wikipedia

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