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Willy Sagnol

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Willy Sagnol

Willy Sagnol

Sagnol in 2007
Personal information
Full name Willy Sagnol[1]
Date of birth (1977-03-18) 18 March 1977
Place of birth Saint-Étienne, France
Height 1.82 m (6 ft 0 in)
Playing position Right back
Club information
Current team
Bordeaux (manager)
Youth career
1990–1995 Saint-Étienne
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1995–1997 Saint-Étienne 46 (1)
1997–2000 Monaco 71 (0)
2000–2009 Bayern Munich 184 (7)
2003–2008 Bayern Munich II 3 (0)
Total 304 (8)
National team
2000–2008 France 58 (0)
Teams managed
2013–2014 France U21
2014– Bordeaux
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Willy Sagnol (born 18 March 1977) is a former French international footballer who played as a defender and is the current coach of Bordeaux. He spent much of his professional career playing for Bayern Munich in Germany's Bundesliga. He was also part of the French squad at the 1997 FIFA World Youth Championship, 2002 World Cup, Euro 2004, 2006 World Cup and Euro 2008.


Willy first made his way in the world of football at his father's former club in Haute-Loire, Montfaucon-en-Velay where he developed his defensive game at right-back, as well as performing exceptionally on the right-hand side of midfield.

From there he progressed, eventually joining the region's flagship club AS Saint-Étienne. An impressive two-year spell saw him earn a transfer to AS Monaco in 1997 and he experienced his first taste of success, winning Ligue 1 in 2000. His excellent form saw him pressing for a call up to represent Les Bleus, but he was initially overlooked by national coach Roger Lemerre.

The summer of 2000 saw Sagnol's career take on a completely different dimension. Transferred to the prestigious German club Bayern Munich, he did not take long to break into the first team. At Bayern, Sagnol consolidated his reputation as one of the best full backs of his generation. A solid defender but also equally comfortable operating in attacking positions (often as a wing-back), Sagnol's superb crossing ability marked him out as a key player in Bayern's attacking play. With the Bavarian club, he won the Bundesliga in 2001, 2003, 2005, 2006, and 2008, as well as the Champions League in 2001 and the DFB-Pokal in 2003, 2005, 2006, and 2008. At international level, he had less success, often finding himself on the bench playing second fiddle to Lilian Thuram on the right-hand side of the French defense. It was not until the retirement of Marcel Desailly and Thuram's consequent move into the centre of the French defense that Sagnol finally became first choice right-back in 2004, and remained there for the next four years.

Because of continuing problems with his Achilles tendon, Sagnol quit his football career on 1 February 2009.[2]

International career

Sagnol was part of France's squad for the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, starting each of his country's seven games en route to the final. His competent performances, aided by France's progression to the final led to him being named as one of the outstanding defensive performers in the tournament. He saved his best display for the biggest stage of them all, the World Cup final, and was one of the better performers in a game largely remembered for off-the-ball events rather than on-the-field performances. Indeed, Sagnol's name could have been immortalized had his strong effort on goal not been successfully repelled by Gianluigi Buffon. Nonetheless, his performance was notable for a solid defensive contribution as well as important involvement in several attacking moves, such as when he provided a cross for his captain Zinedine Zidane, whose header was again superbly saved by Buffon. Sagnol also took the final spot kick for France in the 2006 FIFA World Cup. In the qualification campaign for Euro 2008, fans saw a completely new side of Sagnol. On several occasions, Willy had good efforts on goal as well as still supplying his trademark crosses for teammates like Thierry Henry against Scotland at Hampden Park on 7 October 2006. Sagnol was one of his country's better performers in France's shock loss, having an impressive three efforts on goal from his right back spot, one in particular forcing a superb save from the goalkeeper. The following match, against the Faroe Islands in Paris, was his 50th for his country. His displays in that qualification campaign once more provided proof that Sagnol could be counted on for his consistent defensive play and also to provide extra quality when joining the attack.

Coaching career

Sagnol was head coach of the French U–21 team until he was appointed head coach of Girondins de Bordeaux on 23 May 2014.[3] He signed a two–year contract[3] which expires on 30 June 2016.[4] Girondins de Bordeaux originally wanted Zinedine Zidane as their head coach.[3] This is Sagnol's first coaching job at club level.[3]

Personal life

He is married and has four children.[5]

Career statistics

Club career

As of 28 December 2008[6]

Club performance League Cup League Cup Continental Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
France League Coupe de France Coupe de la Ligue Europe Total
1995–96 Saint-Étienne Division 1 10 0 -
1996–97 Division 2 36 1 -
1997–98 Monaco Division 1 25 0 8 0
1998–99 20 0 4 0
1999–00 26 0 6 0
Germany League DFB-Pokal Other Europe Total
2000–01 Bayern Munich Bundesliga 27 0 1 0 1 0 14 0 43 0
2001–02 28 1 1 0 0 0 12* 0 41 1
2002–03 23 2 5 1 1 0 4 0 33 3
2003–04 21 1 3 0 0 0 6 0 30 1
2004–05 22 1 4 0 0 0 7 0 33 1
2005–06 31 1 5 0 1 0 7 0 44 1
2006–07 23 1 3 0 2 0 9 0 37 1
2007–08 9 0 3 0 0 0 5 0 17 0
2008–09 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total France 118 1 18 0
Germany 184 7 25 1 5 0 64 0 278 8
Career total 302 8 82 0

*Includes UEFA Super Cup and Intercontinental Cup.

Coaching record

As of 6 December 2014
Team From To Record
G W D L GF GA GD Win % Ref.
Girondins de Bordeaux 23 May 2014[3] Present 18 10 4 4 28 21 +7 55.56



AS Monaco
FC Bayern Munich




  1. ^ "FIFA World Cup Germany 2006: List of Players" (PDF). FIFA. 11 May 2010. p. 11. Retrieved 7 January 2014. 
  2. ^ "'"Sagnol hört auf, 'aber mein Herz bleibt hier. (in German). 2 February 2009. Retrieved 2 February 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c d e "Willy Sagnol: Bordeaux appoint former France defender as coach". BBC Sports. 23 May 2014. Retrieved 23 May 2014. 
  4. ^ "Sagnol wird Trainer in Bordeaux". kicker (in German). 23 May 2014. Retrieved 23 May 2014. 
  5. ^ "Sagnol forced to call it a day". 2 February 2009. Retrieved 2 February 2009. 
  6. ^ "Sagnol, Willy" (in German). Retrieved 28 May 2014. 

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