Graziano Pelle

  • Graziano Pelle
  • Age30
  • Apps81
  • Contract2019/06/30
  • Height6ft 4in (1.94m)
  • PositionForward

Pellè signed a three-year deal for ₤8 million with Southampton in July 2014, reuniting him with his former AZ and Feyenoord coach Ronald Koeman.

He made his competitive debut for the club on 17 August in their first game of the new league season, playing the full 90 minutes of a 2–1 defeat at Liverpool.

On 26 August, he scored his first competitive goal for the club in a 2–0 victory over Millwall in the Second Round of the League Cup. His first league goal for the club came four days later in a 3–1 away win over West Ham.

He scored twice more in Southampton’s next match, a 4–0 home win over Newcastle United on 13 September to secure their second league win in as many games. On 27 September, Pellè won a match against Queens Park Rangers with an overhead kick deemed “world class” by opposing manager Harry Redknapp.

Pellè won the Premier League Player of the Month award for September, with Koeman named the Manager of the Month, and he followed this up with two goals in an 8–0 victory over Sunderland on 18 October. He scored another brace in a League Cup victory over Stoke City on 29 October, helping his side reach the quarter finals of the competition for the first time in ten years. These were his eighth and ninth goals in his last twelve games.

On 11 April 2015, Pellè scored his first Premier League goal of the year in a 2–0 win over Hull City at St. Mary’s Stadium, ending a run of 15 league matches without scoring. Two weeks later, in a 2–2 draw against Tottenham Hotspur, Pellè scored both goals for his team; a strike after overpowering Ben Davies, and a header from a cross by Shane Long.

2015–16 season

Pellè scored Southampton’s first goal in a European competition since 2003 when he opened a 3–0 Europa League third qualifying round home leg win over Vitesse Arnhem on 30 July 2015. A week later it took him four minutes to open a 2–0 win in the away leg.

In Southampton’s first match of the league season away to Newcastle United, he headed in Cédric Soares’ cross to open a 2–2 draw. He scored twice against Manchester United on 20 September, albeit in a 2–3 home loss.

Pellè then scored his fifth of the season against Chelsea in a 3–1 win at Stamford Bridge, scoring Southampton’s third goal of the match from a tight angle.

Pellè left Southampton for Chinese club Shandong Luneng on 11 July 2016 for an estimated fee of £12 million.

Further reading: Wikipedia