SALOMON KALOU profile from www.ContactThePlayers.com
Salomon Kalou is a striker for the Ivory Coast and Chelsea in the English Premier League. He can play as the main central striker, but is at his best when he is stretching the defence and operating as almost a winger, which is where Jose Mourinho preferred him to operate. He is an adept crosser of the ball, and can be relied upon to score goals. Following a struggle to become a Dutch citizen, Kalou eventually opted to play internationally for his homeland, where he links up with Chelsea team-mate Didier Drogba.
Salomon Kalou was born on 5th August 1985 in Oume, in the Ivory Coast. Because of the number of talented players in the area, it has long been a scouting ground for the big European clubs. His brother, Bonaventure Kalou, was playing in Europe, which also helped his cause. Kalou spent much of his day playing football in the streets and parks, and was snapped up by ASEC Mimosas, a large local club.
Kalou played at various youth levels with ASEC, and was scouted because of an agreement between Feyenoord and his club. On his 18th birthday, it was decided that Kalou had the potential to make it in Europe, and Kalou was transferred to the Dutch club.
He made just two appearances for the first team before he was loaned out to Feyenoord’s sister club, Excelsior Rotterdam, and it was here that he made his first impression, scoring 6 times in 10 league games and showing the poise and finishing that Feyenoord had been hoping for.
He became and established first-team player for Feyenoord at just 19, and was their top scorer in his first full season at the club, netting 20 goals in 31 league appearances. A similar season followed, although this was disrupted by Kalou’s citizenship row – he wanted to be naturalised as Dutch and play for the Oranje rather than his homeland, who lacked organisation. When his bid to become accepted as Dutch failed, he decided that it was time to move on.
On 30th May 2006, Salomon Kalou became a Chelsea player for a reported fee of £12m. He was Jose Mourinho’s first signing of the summer, and was likened by Jose to Thierry Henry because of his full use of the width of the pitch, pace, and finishing ability.
Famously, Kalou turned up to his first day at training with his camera and autograph book so Kalou knew that his chances in the early days would be limited. His never-say-die attitude, coupled with Shevchenko’s fall from grace, saw Kalou given a number of chances to impress over the season, which ended in FA Cup victory.
2008/09 brought more games, and he was utilised a lot more by new manager Avram Grant, and earned his place in their Champions League Final defeat to Manchester United – he scored his penalty only to see John Terry miss, handing the cup to United.