Djorkaeff in 2011
|Full name||Youri Raffi Djorkaeff|
|Date of birth||9 March 1968|
|Place of birth||Lyon, France|
|Height||1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)|
|2005-2006||New York Red Bulls||45||(12)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
Throughout his club career, he played for teams in France, Italy, Germany, England, and the United States.
At international level, Djorkaeff scored 28 goals in 82 appearances with the French national team between 1993 and 2002. He won the 1998 FIFA World Cup, Euro 2000, and the 2001 FIFA Confederations Cup, also taking part at Euro 1996 and the 2002 FIFA World Cup. He is the son of former player Jean Djorkaeff. He currently runs the Youri Djorkaeff Foundation.
Djorkaeff started his career in 1984 with French club Grenoble, before moving to RC Strasbourg in 1989, AS Monaco in 1990, and then Paris Saint-Germain in 1995. In 1994, Djorkaeff led Division 1 in goals with 20. He won the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup with PSG in 1996.
In 1996, he signed with Italian club Inter Milan. In his first season, he scored 17 goals in 49 appearances across all competitions, scoring 14 goals in 33 Serie A appearances; with his excellent performances, he helped the club to a third-place finish in Serie A, and also reached the UEFA Cup Final, in which Inter were defeated by Schalke on penalties following a 1-1 draw on aggregate, although Djorkaeff was able to net his spot kick. During the course of the season, he also scored a memorable goal from a bicycle kick in a 3-1 home win against Roma in the league, on 5 January 1997, which is considered to be one of the greatest goals scored in the club's history. His following season was less successful individually, as he struggled to play well alongside the club's new signing Ronaldo, although collectively Inter finished the season in second place in Serie A and won the UEFA Cup, defeating Lazio 3-0 in the final at the Parc des Princes. In his third and final season with the team, following the signing of Roberto Baggio, he also struggled to find space in the team, and suffered a further loss of form; moreover, the club eventually finished the season in eighth place, outside of all possible European qualifying spots.
Djorkaeff turned many heads when signing with English club Bolton Wanderers in 2002, but added a lot of class to the team during his three seasons there, resulting in the creation of an international "dream-team" alongside the tricky Nigerian Jay-Jay Okocha, and former Real Madrid midfielder Iván Campo. He was a memeber of the squad that reached the final of the 2003-04 League Cup. He then transferred to Blackburn Rovers but left the club after playing in only three games.
Djorkaeff then signed with the MetroStars of Major League Soccer in February 2005, turning down higher paid offers from other countries. He became the first French player to play in MLS and ended the season as the team's MVP with ten goals and seven assists in league play.
Djorkaeff announced from the beginning that he would hang-up his boots at the end of 2006 season, and played for the re-branded New York Red Bulls. On 1 July 2006, he was spotted in the crowd with French fans at the FIFA World Cup quarter-final match between France and Brazil after telling Red Bulls officials he left the club to attend to "an unexpected, serious family matter in France." Upon his return, he revealed that the purpose of his departure was to be with his sick mother and downplayed watching the World Cup match.
He retired from professional football on 29 October 2006.
Djorkaeff accumulated 82 caps and scored 28 goals for France at senior level between 1993 and 2002. Other than the two major tournaments he won with the national side - the 1998 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 2000 - Djorkaeff also played for his country in UEFA Euro 1996 and the 2002 FIFA World Cup. In the 1998 FIFA World Cup Final in Paris, he set-up Zinedine Zidane's second goal from a corner in an eventual 3-0 victory over defending champions Brazil.
Nicknamed The Snake, due to his ability to get past defenders and bend the ball, Djorkaeff was a talented playmaker, who usually played as an attacking midfielder, although he was also capable of playing in playing in deeper positions in midfield on occasion - namely as a central midfielder -, or in more attacking roles, as a creative second striker, or even as an outright striker, while he often feeatured in a wide role on the left flank at international level. An elegant and technically gifted player, he was mainly known for his flair, dribbling skills, and excellent touch on the ball; he was also known for his vision, passing, composure, and class, and possessed a good shot, which enabled him both to score or create goals. He was known for his positional sense and intelligent movement off the ball, as well as his ability to lose his markers with his attacking runs and create space for himself, or provide depth to the team; he was also highly regarded for his accuracy from free kicks and penalties with his right foot. A hard-working player, who was known for his defensive contribution off the ball, he had the ability to link the defence with the attack or drift out wide in a free role in midfield; as such, his playing style and role has been described as that of a "nine and a half," half-way between that of a midfielder and that of a forward, which from a tactical standpoint, however, occasionally made it difficult for managers to find the right position for him on the pitch that best suited his capabilities. Moreover, despite his talent and success, he was also accused of being inconsistent at times in the media.
Djorkaeff has a wife, Sophie, and three children: Sacha, Oan and Angelica. Djorkaeff released a singing single called "Vivre dans Ta Lumière", translated to "Living in Your Light" from French. His father, Jean, and younger brother, Micha Djorkaeff, were also professional football players.
On 15 November 2012 Djorkaeff hosted Phone-a-thon for Armenian charity held in Europe. The Phoneathon benefits the construction of community centres in villages throughout Nagorno Karabakh and comprehensive agricultural development in Armenia's Tavush Region. In addition, a part of the proceeds will be dedicated to providing urgent aid to the Syrian-Armenian community.
During his time in England, Djorkaeff opened a football school in Armenia. After retiring, he became the president of his childhood club in Lyon, Union Generale Armenienne de Decines, in April 2007. Djorkaeff currently also runs the Youri Djorkaeff Foundation, a non-profit organisation dedicated to providing football programs in New York City.
|Club performance||League||National Cup||League Cup||Continental||Total|
|Coupe de la
|Italy||League||Coppa Italia||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|1996-97||Inter Milan||Serie A||33||14||6||1||-||-||10||2||49||17|
|England||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|2001-02||Bolton Wanderers||Premier League||12||4||2||0||1||0||0||0||14||4|
|USA||League||Open Cup||League Cup||North America||Total|
|2006||New York Red Bulls||21||2||1||0||-||-||-||-||22||2|
|France national team|