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Overview

Cristian Damin Battocchio (Italian pronunciation: ; born 10 February 1992) is an Argentine-born Italian [2] professional footballer who plays as a midfielder for French club Stade Brestois 29. Battocchio is a central midfielder and deep-lying playmaker.[3]

Club career

Udinese

Born in Rosario, Argentina, Battocchio arrived at Italian club Udinese in 2009[4] at the age of 16 from Newell’s Old Boys in Argentina for a transfer fee of 200,000[3] In the 2010-11 season he became the captain of the youth team of Udinese.[5] On 27 February 2011, he made his debut with the first team of Udinese against Palermo In a historic 7-0 victory for Udinese,[5][6] coming on from the bench after the game had already been won.[6]

On 29 September 2011, he made his second appearance with the first team in the UEFA Europa League competition, facing Celtic in a 1-1 draw.[7] before the match his first team coach Francesco Guidolin said that Battocchio was now ready for the first team and compared him to David Pizarro,[3]Johan Walem, the youth coach of Udinese, said “he is now stable for the first team, has important qualities: vision of the game, a good foot, kick the penalties. He can do well as deep-lying playmaker“.[3]

Watford

On 30 August 2012, Battocchio was loaned to Watford, with Watford having the choice to purchase him at the end of the deal. Battocchio played in Watford’s 4-0 win over Huddersfield on 19 January, and scored Watford’s final goal – his first for the club – with a lovely finish from a beautiful team move which has been described as one of the best team goals ever at Vicarage Road. This goal won Watford “Goal Of The Season” as voted by the fans and Battocchio was awarded the trophy. Battocchio then scored his second goal for Watford against Blackpool on 9 March 2013.

Battocchio signed for Watford on a permanent basis on 19 July 2013, with the contract running for a period of three years until 2016. Battocchio scored his first league goal as a permanent Watford player in a 1-0 win at home to Wigan Athletic on 28 September 2013.

Loan to Virtus Entella

After falling down the pecking order under then Watford manager Beppe Sannino, Battocchio moved on a season-long loan to Serie B side Virtus Entella on 26 August 2014.[8]

Brest

Battocchio left Watford in the summer of 2015, signing a two-year deal at Stade Brestois 29 on 11 August 2015.[9]

Maccabi Tel Aviv

On 10 July 2017, Battocchio signed a two-year contract at Maccabi Tel Aviv F.C. with an option to extend for another year.[10]

Return to Brest

On 19 January 2019, Battocchio signed to Brest for the second time.[11]

International career

On 9 October 2011, Battocchio was called up to the Italy U20 squad by coach Luigi Di Biagio.[12] Then on 9 November 2011 he made his debut with Italy U20s in a friendly against Ghana U20s, ending in a 3-0 win for the Azzurri.[13] He went on to play for Italy at U21 level.

Career statistics

Club

As of match played 8 November 2019[14]

Appearances and goals by club, season and competitionClubSeasonDivisionLeagueNational CupLeague CupEuropeTotalAppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoalsUdinese2010-11Serie A1000102011-1240003[a]0702012-1310000010Total60003090Watford2012-13 (loan)Championship24210002522013-143543031415Total596403100667Virtus Entella2014-15 (loan)Serie B32000320Brest2015-16Ligue 233510003652016-173582020398Total68133020007313Maccabi Tel Aviv2017-18Ligat Ha`Al251005011[a]0411Brest2018-19Ligue 214200001422019-20Ligue 11000010110Total242001000252Career total214227011114024623

  1. ^ a b Appearances in the Europa League