Adel Taarabt
born 24 May 1989 is a Moroccan footballer who plays for Queens Park Rangers as a midfielder. He began his playing career in France at Lens before moving to English Premier League team Tottenham Hotspur in 2007. He was unable to break into the first team at Spurs under either Juande Ramos or Harry Redknapp and moved to QPR, initially on loan, in July 2009 and then permanently in August 2010. He quickly established himself at Loftus Road and was made captain by manager Neil Warnock at the start of the 2010/11 season. He represented France at youth levels but opted to play for his native Morocco at senior level making his debut in February 2009.

Born in Zeghangane, Morocco,Taarabt grew up in Berre-l'√Čtang, France having moved there at the age of nine months. He began his career at Lens in 2004, and played 14 games for RC Lens B in the Championnat de France amateur.He made one first team appearance for Lens during the 2006–07 season.

Taarabt signed for Tottenham Hotspur on a long-term loan on 2 January 2007 after the club offered to quickly integrate him into the first team to offer him maximum playing time. Within two months he made his first senior appearance in a Tottenham shirt, entering as a 87th minute substitute against local rivals West Ham United, which ended as a 4–3 victory. He made a second appearance in the 1–0 loss to Chelsea, again as a second half substitute, playing as a striker.

Tottenham signed Taarabt permanently on 8 June. Upon signing for Tottenham he was hyped as the next Zinedine Zidane. He scored his first goal for Spurs in a pre-season friendly against Stevenage Borough on 7 July. He made his first appearance of the 2007–08 season with Tottenham against Derby County in the 4–0 win on 18 August, which he entered at the 70th minute.

At the beginning of the 2008–09 season, Taarabt was not given a squad number by then manager Juande Ramos, though he was given his old number when Harry Redknapp took over team management.

On 13 March 2009, he joined Championship team Queens Park Rangers on loan until the end of the season.He scored his first goal for QPR in a 2–1 win over Bristol City.His loan spell was cut short after he suffered a knee injury which required surgery.

Taarabt rejoined QPR on a season-long loan for the 2009–10 season on 23 July 2009. On 1 October, Taarabt scored a "wonder strike" in a match against Preston North End. He collected the ball on his chest inside the QPR half and dribbling 20 yards past three players and curled in a shot from 25 yards. This led Jim Magilton to label Taarabt as a "genius" and the goal is seen as one of the Championship's finest.

Tottenham confirmed in October 2009 that Taarabt could stay at QPR for the season providing that a Premier League club did not make a bid for him in the January transfer window. QPR were unable to make the transfer a permanent one because they could not afford the £4.5 million valuation placed on Taarabt by Spurs.

In March 2010, Taarabt was quoted in an interview as being sorry that he signed for Tottenham. He had said "The big mistake was to sign for Tottenham and not go to another club when I first came over". He stated that he wished he had signed for Arsenal instead but had opted for Spurs after Damien Comolli moved from being a scout at Arsenal to director of football at Spurs. He stated that he felt he would have been given more chances to play at Arsenal and was advised at the time not to sign for Spurs by his friends Armand Traore and Abou Diaby, who play for Arsenal.

Taarabt went on to state his intention to sign for one of the top clubs in Spain "I hope to be playing for one of the top four in Spain next season – Real Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia or Sevilla. I have contact with good teams and I know that they want me. Now I just have to hope they can agree a deal with Tottenham."

In January 2011, Taarabt was interviewed by the Evening Standard, in which he stated: "The man who took me to Tottenham was Damien Comolli, now at Liverpool. He was at Arsenal then. But, when I was going to go to Arsenal, he moved to Tottenham. He told me: 'Come to Tottenham. We want to do like they do at Arsenal and take the best young players in the world. You're going to have a better chance there.' I believed him. This was a mistake and I regret it. Tottenham tried to do it like Arsenal but it's a different culture. I would have had a better chance at Arsenal. I would progress with Arsene Wenger. He is a legend in France, one of the best managers in the world".

Taarabt signed permanently for QPR on 4 August 2010 on a three-year contract for an undisclosed fee. He scored his first goal as a permanent QPR player during the first game of QPR's 2010–11 Football League Championship campaign against Barnsley, a penalty during the 4–0 win on 7 August 2010. Taarabt's performances for QPR during August 2010 earned him the Championship's Player of the Month award, as QPR topped the table.

In August 2010, with club captain Martin Rowlands a long-term injury victim and stand-in captain Fitz Hall unavailable, Taarabt was named captain. In December, manager Neil Warnock revealed that Taarabt would continue to serve as captain even after Hall's return from injury.

By the end of February 2011, Adel had scored 15 Championship goals for the season.The 15th was scored from the penalty spot in a 3–0 away win at Middlesbrough. On 30 April, Taarabt scored the first of the goals in a 2–0 win over Watford to help crown his team as champions and securing promotion to the Premier League.

Taarabt represented France at under-16, under-17 and under-18 levels, but opted to play for Morocco, saying "I felt the time was right when I was given this opportunity". On 11 February 2009 Taarabt played his first international match with Morocco in a friendly against Czech Republic in Casablanca.[24] He also made an appearance on 29 March during Morocco's 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifier 2–1 defeat against Gabon.

Taarabt scored his first international goal on his first start on 31 March 2009 in a friendly 2–0 victory over Angola.On 6 September 2009 he scored his first goal in a competitive international match against Togo in the 20101 World Cup qualification after he broke through the opposing defence in stoppage time.

On 3 June 2011, Taarabt ended his international career after being dropped to the bench for an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Algeria the following day.


Date of birth: 24 May 1989 (1989-05-24)
Place of birth: Taza, Morocco
Height: 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position: Midfielder

Club information
Current club: Queens Park Rangers
Number: 7

Youth career
2004–2006 Lens

Senior career*
2005–2007 Lens B 14 (0)
2006–2007 Lens 1 (0)
2007 → Tottenham Hotspur (loan) 2 (0)
2007–2010 Tottenham Hotspur 7 (0)
2009 → Queens Park Rangers (loan) 7 (1)
2009–2010 → Queens Park Rangers (loan) 41 (7)
2010– Queens Park Rangers 43 (19)

National team
2009–2011 Morocco 10 (3)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 17:13, 3 June 2011 (UTC).

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