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Antonio Valencia

Luis Antonio Valencia Mosquera (born 4 August 1985), commonly known as Antonio Valencia , is an Ecuadorian association football who currently plays as a Midfielder Winger for Manchester United F.C. and the Ecuador national football team. Antonio Valencia has also occasionally been deployed as an emergency Defender Full back for Manchester United.

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Antonio Valencia biography

Luis Antonio Valencia Mosquera (born 4 August 1985), commonly known as Antonio Valencia , is an Ecuadorian association football who currently plays as a Midfielder Winger for Manchester United F.C. and the Ecuador national football team. Antonio Valencia has also occasionally been deployed as an emergency Defender Full back for Manchester United.

After progressing through the youth system at Club Deportivo El Nacional, Valencia became a first team regular and made over 80 appearances for the club before signing for La Liga side Villarreal CF in 2005. Antonio Valencia only made two league appearances for the Spanish side in between successful loan spells at Recreativo de Huelva for the 2005–06 La Liga and later English Premier League club Wigan Athletic F.C. from 2006 to 2008. Wigan later signed Valencia on a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee in January 2008. Antonio Valencia performances for Wigan soon attracted attention from several high profile clubs and Antonio Valencia turned down a move to Real Madrid C.F. before signing for Manchester United F.C. in June 2009. Valencia has since won the 2009–10 Football League Cup, the 2010 FA Community Shield, and the 2010–11 Premier League during Antonio Valencia time at Manchester United, along with being voted into PFA Team of the Year in Antonio Valencia PFA Team of the Year Premier League 18.

Valencia made Antonio Valencia Ecuador debut in 2005 and scored two goals in the process. Antonio Valencia represented Antonio Valencia country at the 2006 FIFA World Cup, the 2007 Copa América and the 2011 Copa América. Since making Antonio Valencia debut, Valencia has won 51 caps and scored six goals for Antonio Valencia country.

Early life

Valencia was born on 4 August 1985 in Nueva Loja, also known as Lago Agrio, Ecuador, which is located in the Amazon Rainforest. Valencia helped Antonio Valencia mother sell drinks outside the stadium of Antonio Valencia local club at Lago Agrio and would then search for empty bottles for Antonio Valencia father to sell to a bottle-deposit in the capital, Quito. Valencia used to play barefoot on the pitch next to the bungalow Antonio Valencia shared with Antonio Valencia parents, five brothers and sister.

When Valencia was aged 11, scout Pedro "Papi" Perlaza spotted Antonio Valencia playing on a dusty field near Antonio Valencia home, and signed Antonio Valencia to the local FA-run sports academy in Sucumbíos Province. At the age of 16, Valencia didn't tell Antonio Valencia father Antonio Valencia left home to take up an offer to play for Club Deportivo El Nacional, the military-backed club in Quito. Nobody knew about Valencia’s decision, except Antonio Valencia mother and Antonio Valencia elder brother, Carlos Alfredo, who paid the fare for Antonio Valencia eight-hour bus journey. Valencia began in Midfielder Centre midfielder and on a salary of 50 dollars a month. Valencia made Antonio Valencia debut for El Nacional alonsgside Antonio Valencia idol Édison Méndez. After failing to break into the first-team, however, Antonio Valencia was loaned to Recreativo de Huelva to gain experience. Valencia helped Recreativo gain promotion to La Liga as they finished the season top of the table.

Wigan Athletic

On 3 August 2006, Valencia joined English Premier League club Wigan Athletic F.C., initially on a year long loan deal. Antonio Valencia made Antonio Valencia debut for Wigan on 19 August, in a 2–1 loss away to Newcastle United F.C.. Antonio Valencia first goal for Wigan came in a 4–0 home win over Manchester City F.C. on 21 October. Valencia returned after a three-month absence as Antonio Valencia played 78 minutes of a 2–0 home loss to Everton F.C. on 21 January 2007. Valencia was sent off for the first time for Wigan on 9 April, receiving a straight red card for a two-footed challenge on Wilfred Bouma during a 1–1 away draw against Aston Villa F.C.. Valencia ended Antonio Valencia first season with one goal, one assist and one red card in Antonio Valencia 22 appearances.

The loan was extended into the following season, and on 18 January 2008 Antonio Valencia transferred for an undisclosed fee, signing a three-and-a-half-year contract. The deal was said to be worth around Pound sterling5 million. Valencia scored Antonio Valencia first goal of the 2007–08 Premier League in a 2–0 win over Derby County F.C. on 23 February, before netting Antonio Valencia first Wigan Brace (sports) in a 2–0 away victory over Aston Villa on 3 May. Valencia ended the season with three goals and three assists in 32 appearances in all competitions.

Valencia's first goal of the 2008–09 Premier League came in Wigan's 5–0 away victory over Hull City A.F.C. on 30 August. Antonio Valencia then grabbed a goal in the 2–1 home win over Manchester City on 28 September, but followed it up by receiving a red card in the 3–2 loss at Liverpool F.C. on 18 October. Valencia scored Antonio Valencia final goal for Wigan on 13 December, as Antonio Valencia inspired them to a 3–0 victory over Blackburn Rovers F.C.. Wigan boss Steve Bruce confirmed that Valencia turned down the chance to join Real Madrid CF in January 2009. On 9 February, Valencia was ruled out of action for three weeks after suffering a recurrence of a hamstring injury. In early June 2009, the Wigan chairman Dave Whelan announced that Antonio Valencia would not force Valencia to stay at the club. Valencia scored 7 goals in 88 appearances during Antonio Valencia time at Wigan.

Manchester United

On 30 June 2009, Valencia became Manchester United's first summer signing, having cut Antonio Valencia holiday short to have a medical with the club. Antonio Valencia signed a four-year contract for an undisclosed fee, rumoured to be in the region of £16 million. On 29 July, Antonio Valencia made Antonio Valencia debut for United and scored Antonio Valencia first goal in the process, netting United's second in a 2–1 pre-season victory over Boca Juniors in the Audi Cup. Antonio Valencia made Antonio Valencia competitive debut for Manchester United in the 2009 FA Community Shield, when Antonio Valencia came on for the injured Nani in the 62nd minute. On 17 October, Antonio Valencia scored Antonio Valencia first competitive goal for the club, scoring United's second in a 2–1 league victory against Bolton Wanderers F.C.. Antonio Valencia first UEFA Champions League goal followed four days later in a 1–0 away victory against PFC CSKA Moscow.

Valencia provided the assist for Wayne Rooney's winning goal in the 2010 Football League Cup Final against Aston Villa F.C. on 28 February 2010, Valencia was named Man of the Match as United won 2–1. On 25 April, Valencia was included in the PFA Team of the Year in Antonio Valencia debut season for the club alongside team-mates Patrice Evra, Darren Fletcher and Wayne Rooney. On 8 August, Valencia scored United's first goal in their 3–1 win over Chelsea in the 2010 FA Community Shield.

During a Champions League game against Rangers F.C. on 14 September, Valencia suffered a break to Antonio Valencia left ankle. An operation the morning after the match showed that Antonio Valencia left ankle was fractured and dislocated, and that Antonio Valencia ankle ligaments were damaged. On 28 February 2011, Valencia returned to training with Manchester United's first-team. Antonio Valencia played Antonio Valencia first game back from injury against Arsenal F.C. in the FA Cup sixth round on 12 March 2011. On 9 April, Antonio Valencia scored Antonio Valencia first league goal of the season as Antonio Valencia netted the second of a 2–0 home win over Fulham F.C.. Days later, Antonio Valencia scored the first goal in United's 4–1 victory against the German team Schalke 04 in the second leg of the semifinal of the 2010–11 UEFA Champions League, game in which Antonio Valencia was selected as player of the match. On 14 May, Antonio Valencia became the first Ecuadorian player to win the English Premier League in the 2010–11 Premier League season. Valencia was a starter in United's 3-1 UEFA Champions League final defeat to FC Barcelona, preferred instead of Nani in the line-up at Wembley Stadium.

On 1 August 2011 Valencia agreed a new four-year deal with Manchester United that will keep Antonio Valencia at the club until the summer of 2015. Prior to the start of the 2011-12 season, Valencia picked up an ankle injury on international duty with Ecuador at the Copa America during the summer. Antonio Valencia missed United's entire pre-season tour of the USA because of the injury. Antonio Valencia also missed the first month of the season because of a lack of match fitness. Valencia made Antonio Valencia first start of the season away at Benfica in the first group stage match of the UEFA Champions League. Then on 18 September 2011 Antonio Valencia returned to Premier League action, replacing the injured Chris Smalling at right back in the 3-1 win against Chelsea F.C.. Antonio Valencia then continued to play right back in the next three games against Leeds United in the Carling Cup, away at Stoke City and home against Norwich City in the Premier League. Valencia scored Antonio Valencia first goal of the season, in a 4th round Carling Cup tie against Aldershot Town, receiving the ball in the middle of the park and then turning and firing in from 25 yards to seal a 3-0 victory. Valencia scored Antonio Valencia second goal of the season, the opening goal in Manchester United's Champions League fixture against Otelul Galati, the game finished 2-0. On 26 December 2011 Valencia scored the fourth goal for Manchester United in a 5-0 home win against Wigan Athletic. Antonio Valencia received the ball on the right hand edge of the penalty area and rifled a shot across goal and into the far corner. On the 22nd of January Valencia headed home the first goal against Arsenal. The game later ended 2-1 to Manchester united. Antonio Valencia's good ongoing form has earned Antonio Valencia tonnes of praise and an improving reputation.

International career

Ecuador U20

Valencia was fast tracked through the Ecuador national under-20 football team, alongside Christian Benítez, where Antonio Valencia scored 17 goals in 23 matches.

Ecuador senior team

On 27 March 2005, Valencia's gained Antonio Valencia first international cap for Ecuador national football team and netted Antonio Valencia first two international goals in the process, coming in a 5–2 2006 FIFA World Cup qualification (CONMEBOL) win against Paraguay national football team. Three days later Antonio Valencia scored again in a qualifying match, this time netting in 2–2 draw away to Peru national football team. Valencia played in all of Ecuador's 2006 FIFA World Cup matches, and was chosen as a nominee for FIFA's ideal 11 team, which recognises the top stars for every position in the World Cup. An email broadly circulated in England encouraged votes for Valencia, in an attempt to prevent Cristiano Ronaldo from winning. Valencia ended up receiving the greatest number of votes in the online poll, but since the award's winner is determined by a combination of the fan vote and a judging panel, the award was eventually given to Lukas Podolski.

On 27 June 2007, Valencia netted Ecuador's first goal of their 2007 Copa América campaign, however they eventually lost the match 3–2 to Chile national football team and finished the tournament bottom of their group. Valenica received hs first red card for Ecuador on 12 October 2008, during a 1–0 victory over Chile in a 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification (CONMEBOL). On 9 September 2009, Valencia scored Antonio Valencia first World Cup qualifying goal, netting in a 3–1 away victory over Bolivia national football team. On 10 October 2009, Antonio Valencia netted for the second qualifier in a row, this time netting Ecuador's single goal in a 2–1 defeat to the hands of Uruguay national football team.

On 3 July 2011, In a match against Paraguay national football team at the 2011 Copa América, Antonio Valencia suffered a sprained left ankle and was forced off at half-time.

International goals

Personal life

Valencia and Antonio Valencia wife, Zoila, have a daughter named Domenica, Antonio Valencia older brother, Éder Valencia, is also a professional footballer playing for Club Social y Deportivo Independiente José Terán in Ecuador.


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