Arjen Robben (born 23 January 1984) is a Dutch professional footballer who plays for German Bundesligaclub Bayern Munich and the Netherlands national team. Robben has appeared at the 2004, 2008 and 2012 UEFA European Championships, and the 2006, 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups. He is a forward who usually plays as a left or right sided winger. Robben is known for
hisdribbling skills, speed, crossing ability and his accurate left foot long range shots from the right wing.
Robben first came to prominence with Groningen, for whom he was player of the year for the 2000–01 Eredivisie season. Two years later he signed for PSV, where he became the Netherlands' Young Player of the Year and won an Eredivisie title. The following season Robben's signature was pursued by leading English clubs, and after protracted transfer negotiations he joined Chelsea in 2004.
Robben's Chelsea debut was delayed through injury, but upon returning to fitness he helped Chelsea bring home two consecutive Premier Leaguetitles, and was the FA Premier League Player of the Month in November 2005. After a third season in England which was punctuated by injury, Robben moved to Spanish club Real Madrid for €35 million. In August 2009, Robben transferred to Bayern Munich for a fee of around €25 million, scoring two goals on his debut. In his first season in Munich, Bayern won the league title, Robben's fifth league title in eight years, and Robben scored the winning goal in the 2013 UEFA Champions League Final. After his first season with Bayern, Robben was also named Footballer of the Year in Germany.
Robben has played in 78 matches for the Netherlands national football team, scoring 26 goals. he made his international debut in a friendly match against Portugal at the age of 19.
Robben's first participation at an international tournament came at UEFA Euro 2004 when manager Dick Advocaat called up younger players, such as Wesley Sneijder and John Heitinga. During the
group stage of the tournament, Advocaat substituted Robben defend a 2–1 lead over the Czech Republic. However, the Czech team then scored two goals and won 3–2, which led to criticism about Advocaat's decision. In the quarter-finals, Robben scored the deciding kick in the penalty shootout between the Netherlands and Sweden, which ensured that at the fifth attempt, the Dutch finally won a shootout. Robben played in his first 2006 World Cup qualifier in 2006. In six games for the Netherlands, Robben scored two goals. The Netherlands qualified for the 2006 FIFA World Cup and in the Netherlands opening match against Serbia and Montenegro, Robben scored the winning goal in the 18th minute, and was named the Man of the match. In the match against Cote d'Ivoire, Robben received this award the second time, thus becoming one of the eight players in the tournament to have won the Man of the Match Award more than once.
Robben is regarded as one of the best wingers in the world, with ESPNstating he is "able to take on and beat defenders at the drop of a hat, Robben's ability to get to the byline and deliver in accurate crosses instils fear into any defence. Usually deployed on the right wing, Robben often cuts inside on his left foot to move to a more central attacking position, and uses his speed and dribbling skills to take on defenders until he finds the space to
make an attempt on goal. He is predominantly a left footed player. During a match he will often drift to the left wing, with his teammate, in the case of Bayern Munich, Franck Ribery, switching over to the right. Another factor in his playing style is his relationship with the right fullback. At Bayern, this partnership with Philipp Lahm has had benefits for the team's efficiency and chemistry. Robben's defensive work improved when he went to Bayern where he often tracks back and covers for his partner when he pushes forward and becomes a temporary right back. Robben has been often accused of diving, and he has at times openly admitted to the charges. In December 2011, Robben apologised for a dive against VfL Bochum in a DFB Pokal match which earned him a yellow card, saying "I must not do things like this". In July 2014, Robben admitted to diving in the first half of Netherlands' match against Mexico in the last 16 round of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, but maintained that he had not dived for the decisive penalty he won in stoppage time which Netherlands converted to win 2-1. Following the incident, Robben's former manager at Chelsea, Jose Mourinho, claimed that Robben's speed and creativity cause opponents who cannot stop him to foul him, but "sometimes Robben tries to get an advantage, or to get a penalty".
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