Hakan Calhanoglu Profile
|Born||Feb 08, 1994|
As one of the world's best free-kick takers, Inter Milan star Hakan Calhanoglu has provided some outstanding moments.
Hakan Calhanoglu is a professional soccer player who plays as an attacking midfielder for Inter Milan and the Turkey national team.
After rising through the ranks at Karlsruher SC, Calhaoglu continued to make a name for himself in Germany with spells at Hamburger SV and then Bayer Leverkusen.
Calhanoglu is known for his pinpoint accuracy from set-pieces, specifically free-kicks, and despite facing criticism over a lack of pace, his technical ability when in possession makes up for his flaws.
Born in Germany, Calhanoglu instead opted to represent Turkey, who he has frequently appeared for since 2013. Heading into Euro 2020, Calhanoglu will hope he can recreate the success of 2008, when Turkey reached the semi-finals.
Calhanoglu joined Karlsruher SC in 2009 aged 15, and participated in their youth set-up for two years before breaking into the senior squad.
He made his debut in 2011, and despite being a standout performer, the side suffered relegation to the third division of German soccer.
In the following summer transfer window, Hamburger SV signed Calhanoglu on a four-year deal before loaning him back to Karlsruher to gain more experience.
And in his loan season at the club, Calhanoglu impressed once more, helping the side to promotion back to the second division. Overall, Calhanoglu scored 17 goals in 50 appearances over the two seasons.
After moving to Hamburg, Calhanoglu was quickly handed his debut on August 11, 2013, when he started against Schalke in a 3-3 draw.
Calhanoglu's first goals for the club came just weeks later in a 4-0 drubbing of Eintracht Braunschweig. Calhanoglu scored a minute after replacing Rafael van der Vaart, before scoring a free-kick later in the game to double his tally.
This free-kick proved to be a sign of things to come, and Calhanoglu scored another against Borussia Dortmund from an astounding 41 metres in a 3-0 win.
In his first and only season at the club, Calhanoglu helped the side to a 16th-placed finish and made 32 appearances, scoring 11 goals in the process.
Controversy at Leverkusen
After extending his contract at Hamburg in February 2014, Calhanoglu made the switch to Leverkusen in July for a fee of €14.5million.
Initially, Hamburg didn't want to sell to German rivals but financial constraints meant that wasn't possible. Additionally, Calhanoglu was criticised for his actions in the lead up to the move, including taking sick leave after saying he was stressed from fan abuse and vandalism.
The move was further criticised by Hamburg's director who accused him of betraying the club, as well as Son Heung-Min who retaliated following Calhanoglu's claims that the South Korean's move to Tottenham was "badly advised".
However, despite the controversy surrounding his move, Calhanoglu started well at Leverkusen. He made his debut against Copenhagen in the first leg of the Champions League play-offs, and then scored his first goal for the club in the reverse fixture.
Further controversy followed in February 2017 when he received a four-month ban from FIFA regarding a breach of contract during his spell at Karlsruher.
He was ordered to pay back €100,000 to Turkish side Trabzonspor who he had agreed to join in 2011 before instead extending his contract.
Settling in Milan
Following his four-month ban, Calhanoglu signed for AC Milan in July 2017 for a reported fee of €20million. On arrival he was given the prestigious No. 10 jersey, previously worn by legends including Ruud Gullit and Clarence Seedorf.
Calhanoglu made his Milan debut a month later in their Europa League tie against Universitatea Craiova, coming off the bench in the 65th minute.
His first goal came in the Europa League group stage during a 5-1 win over Austria Wien. Calhanoglu provided a goal and two assists.
Since joining the Italian outfit, Calhanoglu has cemented a place in the starting line-up and has showcased his technical ability to Europe's elite.
In the 2020/21 season, Calhanoglu played a pivotal role in AC Milan's second-placed finish in Serie A, contributing four goals and nine assists in 33 appearances.
By the time he laft in 2021, he had made over 100 appearances for Milan.
Crossing San Siro divide to Inter
In the summer of 2021, Hakan Calhanoglu caused a stir when he joined AC Milan's bitter rivals Inter Milan on a free transfer.
"It's a great thing, we know that Inter are a great team, a great club with a nice atmosphere, and great fans," Calhanoglu said. "I'm very happy to be here, I'm going on vacation now, but I already have good feelings.
"We want to win the Scudetto this year too, so we'll see."
Born in Germany but of Turkish descent, Calhanoglu opted to represent the Turkish national side.
Calhanoglu progressed through the youth sides, starting from the under-16s and represented Turkey in the under-20s World Cup in 2013.
Later that year, Calhanoglu was called up to the senior side and made his international debut in a World Cup qualifier against Andorra. He appeared as a substitute for the final eight minutes of a 5-0 victory.
Calhanoglu's first international goal came in a friendly against Luxembourg. His 30-yard strike in the 87th minute proved the winner.
Calhanoglu was born in Mannheim, Germany to Turkish parents hailing from Bayburt. He married childhood sweetheart Sinem Gundogdu in 2017 before divorcing in 2018.
The couple have a daughter, Liya, born in 2019.
Calhanoglu's younger brother, Muhammed, and cousin, Kerim, are also soccer players. Both have played for Waldhof Mannheim.
Calhanoglu's estimated net worth is £7million according to Sportsjone.