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Name Eric Abidal
Gender Male
Ethnic xxxx
Job French Footballer
Desc Eric Abidal was born on 11 September 1979. He converted to Islam after marrying Hayet Kebir and changed his name to Bilal Eric Abidal. The couple got married in the year 2007 and Hayet’s influence led Abidal to change his religion. Hayet is Algerian-born and a former gymnast


Org France National Team
Club as Player Barcelona FC


Wife Hayet Kebir

2013 09 22 Retrieve

[Eric Abidal on Dani Alves] My relationship with Dani [Alves] goes much further than him taking my old No22 shirt. When I had to undergo surgery, he offered to donate his liver. Our relationship goes much deeper than friendship

2013 12 31 Retrieve

[Eric Abidal reveals that former Barcelona teammate Daniel Alves was willing to put his career - and arguably his life - on the line for him when the full extent of his medical problems became clear] When I had to undergo surgery, Dani wanted to donate his liver

2015 05 09 Retrieve

[Eric Abidal on Dani Alves] Dani Alves offered me his liver. He was serious, but I could never have accepted it. He also has a family and a career. It is a massive operation and it was too much. The risk that my cousin Gerard took was huge. He saved my life. It is as simple as that. I did not have chemo but the transplant had its own complications. My immune system had to accept the new liver. I was in hospital for 42 days. I was in awful pain. You do not forget that you have cancer. It is always there, in your mind, and physically I felt so weak. The support I received was amazing. One time I was at home and a package arrived from the Far East. I opened it up and thousands of butterflies flew out around my living room. It was different and beautiful. It was so humbling to think that these people cared so much

2016 08 09 Retrieve

[Christianity to Islam] All the natural progress. Options converted to Islam not because of my wife, but a gift that had suddenly appeared. It really happened there. Flowing away and made me feel happy. I embraced Islam with full confidence

2018 07 31 Retrieve

[Thiago seen as an ideal signing for Barcelona dressing room] We want a player that fits especially with our style. We need people who generate plays through the middle. And if they have to arrive later, well that is fine

2019 11 16 Retrieve

[Eric Abidal says Lionel Messi is in talks with Barcelona over a new contract] They are already talking. I do not know if we will have news soon because the decision will depend on the player, but for us as a club I hope it is sorted as soon as possible

[Asked when he expects an agreement to be announced] It will be known when it is known, but I am positive

[Abidal also confirmed academy product Ansu Fati is in line for a contract extension] We are also talking to him. He is a young player that we have to protect. We have to talk to his family and representatives

2019 11 17 Retrieve

[When asked about Neymar] A top player, who has a Barca philosophy and who is performing at a high level, will always be an option. From there, at the sports level we can make decisions, but the whole financial issue, there are things that you can reach and others that you cannot. The future will say. If it continues at this level, because the season is very long, I will not say that it will be option number 1 but it can be a clear option

2019 11 17 Retrieve

[Eric Abidal has confirmed that Barcelona are interested in signing Inter forward Lautaro Martinez as a possible replacement for Luis Suarez] He is a complete player, I think he is performing at a great level. He is a player we know, there are other players who also have a lot of quality. I know Barca, I know what adaptation is like, but I don’t pay much attention to the player who plays every weekend, I look at others

I am transparent with the players, Luis Suarez can tell you because last year I already told him that it was going to be like that, that we were going to look for an offensive player and I don’t say he did not accept it, he accepted it because he wants the best for the team. Today I can tell you that there is no priority, the planning will always be done, no matter the position in the field, the only change will be the decision. It may be the first signing, the second, it depends on whether there are injuries, exits, ethics, etc

2019 11 17b Retrieve

[Eric Abidal says Ernesto Valverde has the backing of Barcelona’s backroom staff] There’s always a debate about Valverde. The same thing that happened in Rome happened in Liverpool. Because of one result, you can end up thinking that it’s been a bad season. And for the way that it happened. In these situations, you can think that the coach is to blame, but you have to analyse everything. What does the coach bring to the team and vice-versa? We support the coach and we give him all the information, although the day-to-day is his. There are clubs that change coaches after bad results, but you always have to look at the wider situation. If the coach sees that it can be improved, you have to back him

[On rumours of a managerial search being conducted behind the scenes as Valverde approaches the end of his contract] I can assure you that no one has spoken to anyone, although its continuity depends on the result. He is seen to like to train. In the end, he can only say that he wants to continue because of how he feels. I don’t know if it will be the last season because he has the decision. The only thing I know is that we talked face to face about the situation recently. He will decide when he must decide

2019 11 17c Retrieve

[Abidal thinks Griezmann is still adapting to life at Barcelona] He knows it’s complicated to adapt. Here the movements are different, but he’s a player that can add a lot and the coach knows that. Defensively he brings a lot and he can play in many positions. He came because he wants to win the Champions League. He knows he’s not at his best and that’s only fixed by working hard. Griezmann is an intelligent player and the important thing is to know what you can add to the team in the position you are playing

[Abidal added on Griezmann needing more time to adjust to Barca’s unique style of play] It is very difficult to handle. The solution is to work. Time will tell. Here have come top players who did not adapt the first year. You have to be patient. The philosophy of Barca is not so easy

2020 01 14 Retrieve

[Barca sporting director Eric Abidal was thrilled to have Setien on board] To have him here is a great joy for us. He’s a coach who has shown through the teams that he has had that he has great skills. What I like most is the communication he has with his players, his way of working, his way of coaching. He is always focused on details. To compete at the highest level, the details are very important, whether it’s in the league, the cup or the Champions League

2020 02 05 Retrieve

[Abidal implied Valverde was axed in part because players were unhappy under the coach] Many players weren’t satisfied or working hard and there was also an internal communication problem

2020 02 05b Retrieve

[Eric Abidal says Barcelona never made an offer for Xavi Hernandez to replcace Valverde] There was no offer. If he’s got one, let him show it because I haven’t seen it. In the first meeting we had, Xavi listened and in the second, he had to tell us his plan. What came out in the media was more political than sporting. I don’t do politics. I only talk football. What interests me is the way a coach works and many things came out apart from what we talked about

[Abidal suggested he did not think Xavi had enough experience to take on the Barca job just yet] Annoyed? No. I did my job. I stuck with a couple of coaches and nothing leaked. If anything did, I did it the same because it’s my job. It’s impossible to sign a coach without speaking to him. After that, whatever leaks leaks. He doesn’t have that much experience. It’s true he’s from here. It could be his moment, or not. The club bet on Quique Setien for two years and we believe in him a lot. The door to Xavi is always open. I don’t know if I will be here, but Barca always have the door open

2020 02 05c Retrieve

[Eric Abidal shows interest in Arsenal forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as he outlined their desire to land a striker in summer] There is a list with players like [Olivier] Giroud, [Fernando] Llorente or Aubameyang, but for one thing or another we decided not to sign [anyone]. We believe it is the best for the club. I know him (Aubameyang). I do not have much to do [with him] beyond sports. He has a profile that has depth. He is important, and in his team he is decisive. It is good to bring this profile of player who can be in the market and can help you. We’ll see what will happen. It is logical that in summer a ‘9’ will come. It is a necessity. We know that Suarez will come back strong, but you have to bring a top player in the summer. We do not know if he will be young or experienced. We only look at the talent and adaptation they may have. We must think that some top players have come and have not adapted well

2020 02 05d Retrieve

[Eric Abidal says a bid to bring Neymar back to Catalunya is not impossible] It depends on planning, passports and many things. The important thing for me is the sporting aspect, trying to have a stronger team to reach our goals as a club. But having talented players like Lautaro, Neymar or others would always be good for the club. I don’t see it as impossible. We will try to work for that

It gives you a price, but the price would be the same for all clubs. not just Barca. The decision is always that of the player. If we can do that signing it would be good but we’re always thinking that Barca has the philosophy of seeing what happens in the B team and youth teams. We always take into account what is already here when we do our planning

2020 02 08 Retrieve

[Abidal admits to future challenge with Barcelona talisman] The question is for him, hopefully he continues. Leo has said that Barca is everything for him, that he wants to stay here, so we can go from there. We are talking about the best player in the world and having a renewal with such a player is never easy

[Abidal said when asked if fitness issues will impact discussions] No, first you have to have respect for the players and what they are giving, what they gave and what they will give for the club in the future. Now he is in a situation of injury, hopefully he will recover well and from there, just talk. If we as a club feel it makes sense, of course we will enter into negotiations and he will also have to tell us how he feels because in the end it is about respect for the club and for the team.

[While suggesting that Messi and Suarez will be sticking around, Abidal remained coy when it comes to the future of Philippe Coutinho – with the Brazilian currently on loan at Bayern Munich] Bayern is very happy with Philippe and Philippe is also very happy there. From there, it is true that they have a choice [to do a permanent deal], but we have to do our planning with those at home and on loan and then see what happens

2020 02 08b Retrieve

[Eric Abidal admits Barcelona would benefit from Neymar return] I totally agree. Quique would be proud to be able to coach a player like Neymar and the others here who are of such a high level

[On the effect signing Neymar could have on Fati] That’s why planning is not so easy. We may wish to have all the best players, but we can’t make a mistake in the development of players. Since Ansu broke into the first team, he’s contributed a lot. In the last [La Liga] game, he showed his talent again. He’s a player who can play in many positions and you have to take that into account. I think the player is 100 per cent with us, with the first team, and has the goal of staying here for many years

The information we have is that Bayern are very happy with Philippe and Philippe is also very happy there. It’s true they have an option [to buy him], but we have to plan perfectly with those who are in house and on loan, and then we’ll see

[on Ivan Rakitic, who accused the club of a lack of respect and was disappointed by the treatment of former coach Ernesto Valverde] I don’t know in what sense of respect he spoke about. For a player, the most important thing is to have minutes. He’s gone through a difficult moment with Valverde, now we have changed coach. It’s something for the coach, because I can’t manage playing minutes for a player. We have respect because we haven’t spoken with anybody, and neither has he, it seems. He said he planned to leave but in the end he decided to stay at Barca and if he did that, it’s because there is a percentage of satisfaction

2020 02 20 Retrieve

[Braithwaite could make his debut when Eibar visit Camp Nou on Saturday] Martin is a Denmark international, with experience different from those players we have. He has character, strength, speed and great potential. I have had the opportunity to speak with coaches he has had. He will contribute a lot and be decisive. Hopefully, we can compete with him at the highest level