Claude Makélélé

  • Born: (Kinshasa (Léopoldville), Zaire [now Democratic Republic of the Congo])

Claude Makélélé Sinda is a French football manager and former professional player who played as a defensive midfielder. He is currently a youth coach and technical mentor at Chelsea, having formerly been the head coach of Belgian First Division A club Eupen.

In his playing career, which ended at Paris Saint-Germain, Makélélé also played for Nantes, Marseille, Celta Vigo, Real Madrid and Chelsea. He won league titles in France, Spain and England, as well as the 2001–02 UEFA Champions League during his time with Real Madrid.

Makélélé was a French international for 13 years, and was part of the France national team which reached the final of the 2006 FIFA World Cup. He also represented his nation at the 2002 FIFA World Cup, two UEFA European Championships and the 1996 Summer Olympics.

Regarded as one of the greatest ever players in his position, Makélélé has been credited with redefining the defensive midfield role in English football, especially during the 2004–05 FA Premier League season, where he played a key role in helping Chelsea win the title with 95 points. In homage, the defensive midfield position is colloquially known as the "Makelele Role".

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