Slate Taider

Algerian international Saphir Taïder joins Impact as new Designated Player

He has played over 150 career games and 10,000 minutes in Serie A

The Montreal Impact announced on Monday the acquisition of French midfielder and Algerian international Saphir Taïder as a Designated Player, following a three-year deal, including a two-year loan from Italian club Bologna FC 1909, and an option for 2021. He will join the club upon receiving his international transfer certificate and undergoing his medical.

“We’re very happy to welcome Saphir with our club,” said Montreal Impact president Joey Saputo. “He’s a very competitive player who has played over 100 games with Bologna FC since 2012. This signing will help the team to reach his goals.”

“It’s an excellent signing for our club because Saphir is both young and has a lot of experience on the European stage,” said Montreal Impact head coach Rémi Garde. “His career thus far in some of Serie A’s biggest clubs and with the Algerian national team makes him a very important player who can help the Impact win trophies in the seasons to come. After explaining the project being put in place here in Montreal, to my great satisfaction, he chose to accept this challenge and to invest himself fully. His European track record and his position in midfield will give him many responsibilities. I am convinced that he has all the capacities to become one of the top players in MLS.”

“Saphir is an important signing for our club,” said technical director Adam Braz. “At the age of 25, he has already played over 100 games in one of Europe’s top leagues and has over 40 caps for the Algerian national team. He will bring quality and experience to our team and we are delighted that he has chosen to continue his career with us.”

Taïder, 25, has played seven seasons in Serie A, Italy’s top division, recording 10 goals and eight assists in 162 regular season games and 10,885 minutes of play. He also appeared in six Coppa Italia games.

He recorded nine goals and three assists in 115 games across all competitions with Bologna FC 1909, playing with the Rossoblu from 2011 to 2013 and then from 2015 to 2017. He also belonged to prestigious Italian clubs Juventus F.C. and Inter Milan over the course of his career, accumulating one goal and two assists in 25 Serie A games with the Nerazzurri in 2013-14, and then three goals and three assists in 27 games while on loan with U.S. Sassuolo Calcio, in the Italian first division, during the 2014-15 season.

He was also briefly part of Premier League club Southampton F.C. in 2014.

He was developed in France, by Grenoble Foot 38, between 2007 and 2010, and made his professional debut in Ligue 1 in May 2010. He then scored one goal in 26 Ligue 2 games the following season, after the team was relegated. He also appeared in one Coupe de France game and one Coupe de la Ligue game.

On the international scene, Taïder has scored five goals in 42 games with the Algerian national team. He made his international debut on March 26, 2013, against Benin, recording one goal and one assist. He helped Algeria reach the round of 16 at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the quarterfinals of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations. He had previously represented France at the U18, U19 and U20 levels.

Transaction: The Montreal Impact acquires midfielder Saphir Taïder as a Designated Player, following a three-year deal, including a two-year loan from Italian club Bologna FC 1909, and an option for 2021.

Position: Midfielder
Height: 5’11
Weight: 160 lbs
Birthdate and birthplace: February 29, 1992, in Castres, France
Citizenship: France & Algeria
Last club: Bologna FC 1909 (Italy)
Date acquired: January 22, 2018