Gonzalo Higuain Profile
|Born||Dec 10, 1987|
As he approaches the end of his brilliant career, Gonzalo Higuain will be remembered as being one of the 21st century's most clinical strikers, both for club and country.
Gonzalo Gerardo Higuain was born in Brest, France, on December 10, 1987. His father, Jorge, played for Stade Brestois 29. He has French citizenship in addition to his Argentine nationality.
Higuain's family moved back to Argentina when he was 10, and he grew up idolising Brazil striker Ronaldo. Higuain played for the River Plate youth team from 1997 to 2005.
Higuain made his professional debut on May 29, 2005, and he scored his first goal on February 12, 2006. He scored five goals in his first season with River Plate and added 10 goals in 17 games over the next season.
The striker joined Real Madrid in 2007, spending six years in the Spanish capital where he scored 109 goals in 170 games before announcing his departure for Napoli at the end of 2012/13 season.
Switching from Spain to Italy, Higuain spent three seasons with the Naples outfit before heading for Turin to join Juventus.
Enjoying a very successful period at the club, he won three Serie A titles and two Coppa Italias, as well as finishing runner-up in the Champions League.
In that time, he was sent on loan to AC Milan and Chelsea respectively, scoring a total of 13 goals in both his stints across a combined 29 games.
Having succeeded in Spain and Italy, Higuain turned his attentions to the MLS, joining David Beckham's Inter Miami franchise in 2020, where he currently plays.
Gonzalo Higuain and Real Madrid
In December 2006, Higuain signed a €12million ($14.5million) deal with Real Madrid in Spain. He made his debut in the Copa del Rey second round against Real Betis on January 11, 2007. His La Liga debut came three days later, and his first goal came on February 24, 2007, against Atletico Madrid.
In the 2007/08 campaign, Higuain scored nine goals in 34 overall appearances. His goal against Osasuna clinched the La Liga title for a second straight season, and he finished the season with a goal against Barcelona.
The 2008/09 season was a breakout one for Higuain as he scored 24 goals in 44 games. He tallied four goals against Malaga and scored the game winners against Valencia and Getafe.
Higuain improved his goal scoring for the 2009/10 season, finishing only behind Lionel Messi in the La Liga scoring charts with 27 goals. During this season, Higuain also recorded his second hat-trick for the team.
Real Madrid soon extended his contract through 2016 and in November 2010, he scored Real Madrid's 700th Champions League goal. A herniated disc limited him to 17 La Liga games, but he still scored 10 goals, including a hat-trick against Valencia.
Higuain returned to full strength and played in 54 games in 2011/12, scoring 26 goals. His 22 league goals helped Real Madrid win the La Liga title, his third with the team.
He opened the 2012/13 season with a goal against Barcelona as Real Madrid won the Supercopa de Espana. He scored 16 times in 28 league games and tallied his 100th La Liga goal on February 23, 2013.
In seven years with Real Madrid, Higuain won three La Liga titles, two Supercopas de Espana and one Copa del Rey.
Heading to Napoli
Italian club Napoli signed Higuain on a five-year deal worth €40million ($48million) and assigned him the No. 9 shirt on July 27, 2013. Higuain made his Serie A debut on August 25 and scored his first goal a week later against Chievo.
He scored against Borussia Dortmund, Marseille and Arsenal in the Champions League, but Napoli were eliminated in the group stage.
Overall in his first Italian season, Higuain scored 24 goals in 46 games. He scored twice to beat Roma in the Coppa Italia semi-finals and helped Napoli win the trophy with a 3-1 win over Fiorentina.
Napoli claimed the 2014 Supercoppa Italiana against Juventus, winning a penalty shootout after two Higuain goals had tied the game twice. He scored a hat-trick against Hellas Verona and also against Dynamo Moscow in the Europa League round of 16. He finished the 2014/15 season with 39 goals in 58 games.
Higuain won the Serie A Golden Boot in 2015/16 with more goals (36) than league games played (35). He scored twice against Inter Milan in November to put Napoli top of the league for the first time in 25 years. They eventually finished second with 82 points, behind only Juventus. This qualified them for the Champions League group stage.
Higuain scored in seven straight home games at one point and bagged another hat-trick against Frosinone. That hat-trick came in the final game of the season and tied the Serie A record for most goals in a season, set in 1928/29.
Gonzalo Higuain and Juventus
On July 26, 2016, Napoli sold Higuain to rivals Juventus for €90million ($108million), breaking the record as the most expensive South American player in a transfer. His fee was also the highest ever paid by an Italian team until Juventus bought Cristiano Ronaldo in 2018.
His debut came on August 20, and he scored the match winning goal against Fiorentina. He also scored the winner against Napoli on October 29 but didn't celebrate against his former team. He later scored against them twice in the Coppa Italia semi-finals. Higuain became the first player to score at least 20 goals in his debut Juventus season since 1958.
Juventus won the Serie A title and the Coppa Italia in 2017. They lost in the Champions League final to Real Madrid 4-1 as Higuain had the lone assist. He finished the season with 32 goals in 55 games overall.
The 2017/18 season again saw Juventus win the Serie A title and the Coppa Italia. Higuain scored 23 goals in 50 games and became only the second player to score 100 goals in two top European leagues in the last 20 seasons.
On August 2, 2018, he was loaned to AC Milan in a one-year deal. Milan paid €18million ($21.5million) to Juventus, and Higuain scored eight goals in 22 games. They returned him to Juventus halfway through the season, and Higuain was loaned out to Chelsea. He scored his first English Premier League goal on February 2, 2019, against Huddersfield Town.
He scored five goals in 19 games for Chelsea as they won the Europa League and finished runners-up in the League Cup.
Higuain returned to Juventus after the 2018/19 season and switched to the No. 21 jersey. He scored against Napoli on August 31 and netted 11 goals in 44 games as Juventus again won Serie A.
Heading to the States with Inter Miami
On September 17, 2020, Higuain's contract with Juventus was terminated, and a day later, he signed with Inter Miami FC of MLS. Signing with Miami allowed Gonzalo to play with his brother, Federico.
He missed a penalty kick in his debut in a 3-0 loss to Philadelphia Union and scored his first MLS goal on October 7, a free kick against New York Red Bulls.
Gonzalo Higuain and Argentina
Higuain could have played for Argentina or France, but initially turned down both. He eventually chose Argentina after being selected by coach Diego Maradona for the 2010 World Cup qualifiers.
He scored on his debut against Peru on October 10, 2009, and also played against Uruguay as Argentina qualified for the tournament in South Africa. Here, Higuain scored a hat-trick in Argentina's 4-1 group stage win over South Korea, becoming only the third Argentine ever to score a World Cup hat-trick. He also scored against Mexico in the second round to finish as the second-highest goal scorer at the 2010 World Cup.
In the 2011 Copa America, he played in just two games, with one start in the group stage. He started and scored in the quarter-finals against Uruguay and also converted his penalty kick, but Argentina lost in the shootout 5-4.
He scored a hat-trick in a World Cup qualifier against Chile in 2011 and netted twice against Venezuela. He finished the qualifying round with nine goals, the third-most in the CONMEBOL qualifiers.
Higuain provided the assist for Lionel Messi's winning goal in the group stage against Bosnia and Herzegovina at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. He also scored in the quarter-finals against Belgium and helped Argentina reach the final. He had a goal disallowed for offside in the showpiece game as Germany won 1-0.
Higuain scored in the 2015 Copa America against Jamaica in the group stage and also in the semi-final win over Paraguay. He missed his shot in the shootout as Argentina lost to Chile in the final.
He scored twice against the United States in the 2016 Copa America Centenario semi-finals.
Higuain scored once in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers and made his third World Cup appearance in Russia. He played in all three group stage games but didn't play in the Round of 16 defeat to France.
Higuain retired from international play on March 28, 2019. Overall, he played in 75 games for Argentina with 31 goals.
Higuain is dating Lara Wechsler, an actress he met in Naples, Italy. She is also from Argentina.
His father, Jorge, played professional soccer with River Plate and Boca Juniors in Argentina. Brother Federico played with Columbus Crew in the MLS from 2012-19 before joining DC United and Inter Miami. They have two other brothers as well.
Higuain's salary for Juventus in 2019/20 was €15million ($18million). He is estimated to be worth €60million ($72million).
His contract with Inter Miami is for $7million per season, making him the highest-paid player in the MLS. That contract also pays him more than $130,000 per week. His contract with Miami will end at the end of 2022.
Higuain has a long-standing contract with Nike. Also, in the past, Higuain has had endorsement deals with Cover Girl cosmetics. Many restaurants in Buenos Aires are owned by him, and he has also launched his own brand of vodka. Higuain has also featured in a number of commercials for Kentucky Fried Chicken.