Clubs: VfB Stuttgart, Real Madrid CF
• A victorious captain for Germany at Under-21 level in 2009, Sami Khedira proved his worth with the seniors at the following year's FIFA World Cup in South Africa, which helped him secure a move from VfB Stuttgart to Real Madrid CF. A reliable defensive midfielder, his energy and application are second to none.
• Born in Stuttgart to a German mother and Tunisian father, Khedira made his Bundesliga debut for his home-town club in October 2006 and scored his first two goals later that month in a 3-0 defeat of FC Schalke 04; ended his first season as a title winner, heading the decisive goal in a last-day home win against FC Energie Cottbus.
• Skippered Germany to the 2009 European U21 title in Sweden, starting four matches; scored a hat-trick against Luxembourg in qualifying.
• Scored a career-best seven Bundesliga goals in 2008/09, including both in a 2-2 home draw with FC Bayern München; no goals in 2009/10 until the last game before the winter break – a 3-1 home win versus TSG 1899 Hoffenheim.
• Started all seven matches for Germany at the 2010 FIFA World Cup as the replacement for injured skipper Michael Ballack; ended a fine tournament by scoring his first international goal, in a 3-2 defeat of Uruguay in the third-place play-off.
• Joined Madrid in July 2010 for a reported €12m and won the Liga title in his second season, when he scored in a 2-1 victory against FC Barcelona at the Camp Nou.
• Started all five of Germany's games at UEFA EURO 2012, scoring in the quarter-final win against Greece, before the semi-final loss to Italy.
UEFA European Under-21 Championship: winner 2009
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