Patrice Latyr Evra is a French international footballer. Originally an attacker, he primarily plays as a left-back. Evra, whom Sir Alex Ferguson praised for his leadership, also describing him as one of the best left-backs in Europe, has served as captain for both Manchester United and France. The son of a diplomat, Evra was born in Senegal and arrived in Europe when he was a year old. He was raised in France and began his football career playing for various clubs in the Île-de-France region such as hometown club CO Les Ulis and CSF Brétigny. In 1997, he had a stint at professional club Paris Saint-Germain. A year later, Evra seized his first footballing opportunity in neighbouring Italy when he signed his first professional contract with Marsala in Sicily. He made his professional debut with the club and, in the ensuing season, joined Monza. After a year playing with Monza, Evra returned to France to play for Nice. Originally a midfielder, while playing at Nice, he was converted into a full-back. In 2002, Evra moved to AS Monaco and contributed to the team that won the Coupe de la Ligue in 2003. He also featured in European competition for the first time in his career and, in the 2003–04 season, was the starting left-back on the Monaco team that reached the 2004 UEFA Champions League Final. In that same season domestically, Evra was named the National Union of Professional Footballers (UNFP) Ligue 1 Young Player of the Year. He was also named to the organisation’s Ligue 1 Team of the Year. Evra’s performances with Monaco culminated into a move to English club Manchester United in January 2006. While playing for Manchester United, Evra won a slew of trophies, which included winning the Football League Cup in his debut season at the club. In his second season, he eclipsed compatriot Mikaël Silvestre and Gabriel Heinze as first-choice left-back and has since won five Premier League titles, one UEFA Champions League title, one FIFA Club World Cup, three League Cups, and four Community Shield titles. Evra has been named to the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) Team of the Year on three occasions. For his performances during the 2008–09 season, he was named to both the FIFPro World XI and the UEFA Team of the Year. After joining Italian side Juventus in 2014, he immediately helped the club to a domestic double and the 2015 UEFA Champions League Final, and won a second domestic double and the Supercoppa Italiana the following season, before moving to Marseille in January 2017.
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“BE A PANDA”
It was pretty common to see Patrice Evra wearing a panda’s costume or singing and dancing with a panda’s figure on his side. Patrice Evra has finally unveiled his ‘Be a Panda’ scheme, aimed at tackling racism and promoting inclusion. Evra lately shared a dugout video where he explained his aims. “Be a Panda is something really funny but is a serious matter,” Evra says. “It is against racism. It is against bullying. That’s why Be a Panda is black, is white, is Asian and is chubby, because he is eating a lot. I just want to bring my positive energy to everyone. I think we should live happily and we have only one life, so yolo (You only live once) and I love this game”
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Watch the “BE A PANDA” video from Patrice Evra
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Regarded as one of the best players in the world in his position during his prime, Evra is a fast, energetic, and athletic left-back, who, despite his size, is physically strong, and good in the air, which also allows him to be deployed as a centre-back on occasion; in addition to his physical attributes, he is also comfortable on the ball, and adept at getting into attacking positions as a wing-back, where he can deliver crosses to teammates, having functioned as a winger earlier on in his career. An aggressive, tactically intelligent, versatile, and hard-working player, he is also renowned for his leadership and tenacity on the pitch; these attributes make him effective both offensively and defensively. Evra developed an interest in football at a young age and was fascinated by the play of former Brazilian international Romário, though he never really had an idol. He also earned good grades in school. Evra is married to Sandra with whom he has a son, Lenny and a daughter, Maona. He speaks five languages: his native French, English, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese. He also attempted to learn Korean in order to better communicate with Park Ji-Sung, a South Korean teammate at Manchester United. Evra is allergic to eggs, a condition which he did not discover until an examination by Juventus.
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On 21 July 2014, Evra joined Serie A club Juventus on a two-year contract. The fee was £1.2 million, which rose to £1.5 million, after Juventus qualified for the 2015–16 UEFA Champions League. On 14 December 2014, he scored his first goal for the club, opening the scoring of a 1–1 home draw to Sampdoria. On 6 June 2015, Evra started for Juventus in the 2015 UEFA Champions League Final as Juventus were defeated 3–1 by Barcelona at Berlin’s Olympiastadion; the match was the fifth Champions League final in which he had appeared, and the defeat meant that he became the first player to lose four Champions League finals. On 25 November 2015, he made his 100th Champions League appearance in a 1–0 home win over Manchester City, becoming the second French player to do so after Thierry Henry. Evra scored a goal in the last match of the 2015–16 Serie A season on 14 May 2016, in a 5–0 home win over Sampdoria, as Juventus celebrated winning the league title for a fifth consecutive time since the 2011–12 season. On 6 June 2016, Evra signed a one-year contract extension with Juventus; the deal included an option for a further extension of one year.