TFM’s Stars Of The Future is back and we take a look at the young defensive midfielder Gueïda Fofana. France is well known for producing world class defensive midfielders such as Claude Mekelele, Patrick Vieira, Lassana Diarra and many more. Gueïda Fofana is the new generation of defensive midfielder that is set to break out from France.
Gueïda Fofana (Le Havre)
Gueïda Fofana currently plays for French club Le Havre in Ligue 2. Fofana is of the Guinean and Malian descent. He is 6ft in height and plays as a defensive midfielder.
Fofana began his career playing for hometown club ES Mont-Gaillard.
This is when he captured the attention of Le Havre who was interested in signing him. Fofana however rejected the advances of Le Havre and chose to play with his friends and remain close to his family.
However, after constant inquiries, the promising midfielder accepted and joined Le Havre at age 12.
Fofana began training in Le Havre’s youth set up and soon developed into youth international and one of the club’s most promising prospects, alongside the now-departed Paul Pogba, captaining several of the team’s youth squads.
After spending six years in the youth set-up, Fofana signed an élite contract with Le Havre in 2008.
In 2008, at the tender age of 17, Fofana appeared on the bench as a senior team player but did not make an appearance, mainly due to dealing with the rigorous effects of a herniated disc.
Le Havre was relegated from Ligue 1 in the 2008–09 season and, for the 2009–10 season, Fofana began training with the first team on a permanent basis.
Fofana made his professional debut on 18 August 2009 in a league match against Tours appearing as a substitute in the 78th minute.
Fofana earned his first start on 26 September 2009 playing the entire 90 minutes in the club’s 2–0 victory over Metz and on 26 November, Fofana scored his first professional goal in the club’s 1–0 victory over AC Ajaccio.
Two weeks later, and just like any other good defensive midfielders in the world, Fofana earn his first professional red card after accumulating two yellow cards in only 26 minutes in a 1–0 defeat to Clermont.
Fofana finished the campaign with 31 total appearances and one goal.
Fofana began the 2010–11 season as a starter in the midfield and his consistent performance in midfield for the French club attracted plenty of interests from clubs across Europe especially Premier League side Aston Villa.
After failing to secure a January 2011 transfer to English club Aston Villa, Fofana signed his first professional contract agreeing to a three-year deal with Le Havre on 28 January 2011.
Fofana has been an active member of the France youth squad having appeared at all levels.
Prior to representing France on international level, Fofana earned regional caps with Normandy at age 13. He made his international youth debut with the under-16 team in the team’s opening match against the Republic of Ireland in a 1–1 draw.
Fofana made a total of 13 appearance for the France U16 side scoring 2 goals along the way.
With the under-17 team, Fofana was named captain of the team by coach Francis Smerecki and scored his first goal on his debut in a 4–0 victory over Switzerland.
The defensive midfielder made 18 appearance for the France U17 squad scoring 4 goals along the way.
With the under-18 team, he captained the squad that played against England at Wembley Stadium. France won the match 4–2 and Fofana, as captain, was presented with the Fallenhero Trophy by The Football Association chairman Trevor Brooking.
Fofana made a total of 9 appearance for the France U18 squad before being included in coach Francis Smerecki’s 18-man squad to participate in the 2010 UEFA European Under-19 Football Championship.
Fofana was also named as the team’s captain and he led the team to the UEFA Under-19 championship title beating Spain 2-1.
Due to France’s victory at the UEFA Under-19 championship, the nation qualified for the 2011 FIFA U-20 World Cup, which merited under-20 team appearances for Fofana.
He was installed as captain for the fifth consecutive season by Smerecki and made his debut with the team on 7 October 2010 in a friendly match against Portugal, which ended 3–3.
It is only a matter of time before this talented midfielder is called to the senior French squad by coach Laurent Blanc.
Gueïda Fofana mainly operates as a defensive midfielder, making taclkes and winning the ball for his team.
Fofana is known for his physical style of play and his 6ft stature is an added advantage for the youngster.
Fofana also has the ability to play in the defensive position and can play at centre back position if required.
The defensive midfielder also has the ability to pick out a pass from midfielder and occasionally takes the free kicks for the team.
This ability makes Fofana a very versatile player.
Video Of Gueïda Fofana
Full name : Gueïda Fofana
Date of birth : 16 May 1991
Place of birth : Le Havre, France
Height : 1.82 m (6 ft 0 in)
Playing position : Defensive midfielder
Current club : Le Havre
Number : 2