Who is Leroy Sané?
Leroy Aziz Sané is a German professional football player. He plays as a winger and attacking midfielder for the German national team and for the English ‘Premier League’ football club ‘Manchester City.’ The son of Senegalese former footballer Souleyman Sané and German former ‘Olympic’ gymnast Regina Weber, Leroy started playing football as a kid, beginning with the youth team of ‘SG Wattenscheid 09.’ He later played for the youth teams of ‘Schalke 04’ and ‘Bayer Leverkusen,’ before making his professional debut with the senior team of ‘Schalke 04.’ He then transferred to ‘Manchester City.’ He helped the club win the ‘Premier League’ and the ‘EFL Cup’ and was selected as the ‘PFA Young Player of the Year’ in the 2017–2018 season. His international career saw him play for the German under-19 and the German under-21 football teams. Since November 2015, he plays for the German national football team. He was a member of the team that reached the semi-finals of the 2016 ‘UEFA European Championship.’
Childhood & Early Life
Leroy Aziz Sané was born on January 11, 1996, in Essen, Germany, to Souleyman Sané and Regina Weber. His father is a Senegalese former football player who played as a striker. His mother is a German former individual rhythmic gymnast who won the 1984 ‘Olympic’ all-around bronze medal. His parents met while his father was playing professionally for ‘SG Wattenscheid 09.’ Souleyman, who grew up in France, later relocated to Germany through his service in the French army.
Leroy was named in honor of his father’s former head coach, Claude Le Roy. Leroy was raised in Wattenscheid. He attended a secondary school in Gelsenkirchen. He and his two brothers, Kim and Sidi, were part of the youth academy of ‘Schalke 04.’ Leroy’s brothers also played for youth teams or second XI of major football clubs of Germany.
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In 2001, at around 5 years of age, Leroy joined the youth team of ‘SG Wattenscheid 09.’ He played there till sometime in 2005, before joining the ‘Schalke’ youth academy (‘Nachwuchsleistungszentrum’) that year. Thereafter, in 2008, he started playing with Bayer Leverkusen and returned to ‘Schalke 04’ in 2011. He played for its youth team till early 2014.
He began his senior club career with ‘Schalke 04’ on March 21, 2014, signing a 3-year professional contract with the club. The contract was extended till June 30, 2017. His debut match in ‘Bundesliga’ took place on April 20, 2014. He scored his first goal of the season on December 13, 2014, against ‘1. FC Köln,’ and his first ‘UEFA Champions League’ match goal came against ‘Real Madrid,’ on March 11, 2015.
He then went on to sign a 5-year contract with the ‘Premier League’ club ‘Manchester City’ on August 2, 2016. Reportedly, the transfer fee was £37 million, with add-ons based on performance potentially making the fee around £46.5 million. He made his debut with the club on September 10 that year, against ‘Manchester United’ in the ‘Manchester’ derby. On December 18 the same year, he scored his first goal for the club during the ‘Premier League’ match against ‘Arsenal.’ He missed out playing in the 2017 ‘FIFA Confederations Cup,’ as he had to undergo a corrective surgery to overcome his chronic nasal congestion problem.
Leroy continued to perform well in the 2017–2018 season and received the ‘Premier League Player of the Month’ award for October 2017. He was part of the club’s squad during the 2017–2018 ‘FA Cup.’ The 2018 ‘EFL Cup’ final, which was held on February 25, 2018, at ‘Wembley Stadium,’ saw ‘Manchester City’ clinching the trophy by scoring 3–0 against ‘Arsenal.’ Leroy played 77 minutes in the match before he was substituted off.
The ‘PFA Young Player of the Year’ title went to him in 2017–2018, for his contribution in the 2017–2018 ‘Premier League’ title win by ‘Manchester City.’ It marked the third ‘Premier League’ title of the club.
His first ‘Manchester’ derby goal came on April 24, 2019, in a 2–0 win of ‘Manchester City’ against ‘Manchester United.’
He sustained a torn ACL during the 2019 ‘FA Community Shield’ match held between ‘Manchester City’ and ‘Liverpool’ on August 4, 2019. He thus played for 13 minutes before being substituted off. ‘Manchester City’ succeeded in defending the trophy, winning 5–4 on penalties.
Leroy holds both German and French citizenships and was thus eligible to play for any of the two nations. He, however, chose to play for Germany.
He made his junior international debut with the German national under-19 squad in 2014. His stint with the team till sometime in 2015 saw him score 8 goals in his 11 appearances with the squad. On August 28, 2015, he received a call from coach Horst Hrubesch to play for the German under-21 team for a friendly match against Denmark. He also played against Azerbaijan in a 2017 ‘UEFA European Under-21 Championship’ qualifier match.
He made his full-fledged German under-21 team debut on September 3, 2015, when Germany beat Denmark by 2–1 at ‘Stadion an der Lohmühle’ in Lübeck. He was replaced by Julian Brandt after 73 minutes of the match.
On November 6, 2015, he garnered his first senior call-up to the German senior national football team for a friendly match against France. He played in the November 13, 2015 friendly match against France in Saint-Denis, amidst shootings and explosions carried out by terrorists outside the stadium as part of the November 2015 Paris attacks. France won the match by 2–0.
The head coach of the German national team, Joachim Löw, selected Leroy as part of the German squad during ‘UEFA Euro’ in 2016. The team reached the semi-finals, where they were defeated 2–0 by France. The match held on July 7 marked the only match played by Leroy in the championship.
On June 4, 2018, his name was removed from the final squad of the 23-member German national team for the 2018 ‘FIFA World Cup.’ Julian Brandt’s name was included instead. Leroy was later selected for the team in September 2018, to play against Peru and France. However following a discussion with Löw, Leroy left the team hotel. He cited personal reasons for his decision. Later, it was revealed that the decision was because of the birth of his daughter.
His first goal for the German senior national team came on November 16, 2018, during a match against Russia that ended with a 3–0 win for the Germans.
Family & Personal Life
As of 2018, Leroy had been dating American model, singer, and reality TV personality Candice Brook. Their daughter, Rio Stella, was born in September 2018.