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10 Interesting Joselu Facts From Childhood to Glory

Full Name: José Luis Mato Sanmartín

Date of Birth: 27 March 1990

Place of Birth: Stuttgart, Germany

Height: 1.91 m (6 ft 3 in)

Position(s): Striker

Current Team: Real Madrid (on loan from Espanyol)

Joselu's footballing career story traces back to his birth in Stuttgart, West Germany, where he drew his first breath. From his formative childhood years in Germany to his professional exploits in Spain and England, Joselu's trajectory resembles a journey of discovery.

As he navigated various clubs and leagues, each chapter of his career sculpted his skills and character, shaping him into the player and person he is today. From his early days at Celta de Vigo to his stints at Real Madrid and beyond, Joselu's story is one of perseverance and camaraderie, filled with experiences that embody the spirit of "We know what we are, but know not what we may be.

1. He Was Born in Stuttgart, Germany

Joselu was born in Stuttgart, in southwest Germany's Baden-Württemberg state, marking the beginning of a journey that would span across footballing landscapes. His early roots in Germany laid the foundation for his later exploits in Spanish and English football.

2. He Attended School in Germany for Four Years

During his formative years, Joselu spent four crucial years attending school in Germany, where he likely honed his academic skills and early footballing talents. These years of education and growth would shape his future football career.

3. He Played his First Professional Matches for Celta de Vigo

The beginning of Joselu's professional football career saw him don the colours of Celta de Vigo, where he took his initial steps into the competitive football world. These early matches would set the stage for his rise through the ranks of Spanish football.

4. He Joined Real Madrid Castilla in 2009

In 2009, Joselu's journey took him to Real Madrid Castilla, the reserve team of the illustrious Real Madrid, marking a significant milestone in his career as he joined one of the most prestigious clubs in world football. He then returned to Celta on loan for a year before returning to Madrid in 2011.

5. His Career Has Been Marked By A Series of Ups and Downs

Joselu's football odyssey has been marked by highs and lows, with each presenting unique challenges and opportunities. Following his return to the Bernabeu under Jose Mourinho's regime, he had limited appearances due to competition from players like Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema. Consequently, he signed with TSG Hoffenheim in August 2012, exposing him to the rigours of German football.

He spent 2013 to 2014 on loan at Eintracht Frankfurt. Subsequently, Joselu embarked on a four-year deal with Bundesliga side Hannover 96, experiencing growth and adaptation. In June 2015, Stoke City became Joselu's new home, marking his entry into English football. This transition posed significant challenges but offered exciting opportunities in the Premier League. However, his journey took another turn in August 2017 when he struggled to make his mark at Newcastle United.

July 2019 saw Joselu embarking on another chapter as he joined Alavés, returning to La Liga. This move represented a sort of homecoming for Joselu, aiming to rewrite his story on Spanish soil again. Finally, in June 2022, Joselu signed with Espanyol as a free agent, marking the beginning of a new chapter filled with anticipation and excitement as he embraced future opportunities.

6. He Returned to Real Madrid on Loan

Joselu's return to Real Madrid on loan for the 2023-24 campaign was a momentous occasion, offering him the chance to don the iconic white jersey again and make his mark on the grand stage of European football following Benzema's departure. It was a homecoming filled with ambition and determination. He once told the media as the club's official site quoted: "For me, this is more than just wearing a badge, it is one of the most important parts of my life." His contribution to Carlo Ancelotti's team so far has been astonishing, with 17 goals, including five in the Champions League.

7. Cristiano Ronaldo Set up His Debut Goal for Real Madrid in LaLiga

Cristiano Ronaldo set up Joselu's debut goal for Real Madrid in LaLiga, a memorable moment that unfolded on May 21, 2011, during his first-team debut at home against Almería, where the hosts triumphed with an impressive 8-1 victory. This assist marked Joselu's inaugural goal in La Liga and symbolised his arrival on the grand stage of Spanish football. Coming off the bench to replace Benzema, Joselu seized the opportunity with aplomb. The synergy between Ronaldo and Joselu was evident, with Ronaldo's vision setting up the perfect chance for Joselu to make his mark.

Joselu told Real Madrid TV: "I made my Primera debut with my boyhood club and that is a dream come true. I even got a goal. I always get asked who set me up and of course, I get to say it was Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the greatest players in Real Madrid history and world football. These are things that will never leave your memories."

8. He Represented Spain at Under-19, 20, and 21 Levels

Representing Spain at the under-19, under-20, and under-21 levels was a proud achievement for Joselu, reflecting his talent and dedication to the sport. It was a journey marked by hard work, determination, and a love for the game.

9. His Brace Against Bayern Sent Madrid to the 2024 Champions League Final

Joselu's brace against Bayern Munich on May 8, 2024, unexpectedly cast him as the hero of the night. His pre-match declaration to days earlier: "Let's go for another magical night. The fans deserve it, and we'll be up for it," anticipated his spectacular performance. Substituted in the 81st minute for Federico Valverde, with Real Madrid trailing by a goal after Alphonso Davies's 68th-minute strike, Joselu's determined display propelled his team to victory as he scored twice.

He displayed swift reflexes to capitalise on Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer's fumble of Vinicius Jr's attempt, securing the equaliser with only two minutes remaining in regular time and tapping home an Antonio Rudiger pass from six yards. This win secured their spot in the 2024 Champions League final at Wembley, showcasing Joselu's brilliance and emphasising his crucial role in the team's success on the European stage this term.

10. Jude Bellingham often Calls Him 'Crouchy'

At Real Madrid's Valdebebas training ground, an unexpected nickname reverberates amidst the drills and exercises; "Crouchy." This peculiar moniker isn't reserved for a towering figure reminiscent of Peter Crouch but for Joselu, the Spanish striker. The source of this playful nickname? None other than England's rising midfield star, Jude Bellingham. Perhaps Joselu's shared dressing room experience with Peter Crouch at Stoke City sparked Bellingham's creativity in christening him "Crouchy."

With a touch of camaraderie and perhaps a nod to Joselu's physical stature and playing style, the nickname underscores the bond shared between teammates, transcending nationalities and backgrounds. In the corridors of Valdebebas, amidst the hustle and bustle of training sessions, the camaraderie fostered by Bellingham's playful nickname is a testament to the unity within the Real Madrid squad.

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