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  • Writer's pictureDag Jenkins

David Rozehnal

David Rozehnal was born in Šternberk, Czech Republic, on July 5, 1980.

At a young age he alternated between two clubs, Sokol Kožušany and Sigma Olomouc.


It was for the latter, bigger club that he made his professional debut in 1999. He stayed four seasons, playing 72 league games and scoring 2 goals. The Blue and Whites best finish was a 3rd place in 2001.


In 2003 he joined Club Brugges in Belgium. He stayed two seasons with the "Blauw en Zwart" (Blue and Blacks) and played 50 league games with 1 goal. In Bruges he won one league title, a Belgian Cup and two Belgian Super Cups. The manager was Norwegian Trond Sollied.


In 2005 he joined P.S.G in Paris where he stayed two seasons. The Parisiens finished 9th and 15th but won the Coupe de France in 2006 beating Olympique Marseille 2-1. He played 75 league games and scored 1 goal. His managers were Laurent Fournier, Guy Lacombe and Paul Le Guen.


In 2007 he joined Newcastle United in the Premier League. He only stayed with the Magpies until January, playing 21 league games. The manager was Sam Allardyce (he too would leave in January) and the Geordies eventually finished 12th (under Kevin Keegan).


In January 2008 Rozehnal joined Lazio. The manager was Delio Rossi and the Biancocelesti were in difficulty. Already out of the Champions League (in a group with Real Madrid, Werder Bremen and Olympiakos) they were hovering around 14th place in Serie A. Rozehnal played 10 league games and Lazio finished 12th. The competition at the back was tough with Emilson Cribari, Sebastiano Siviglia, Stefan Radu and Modibo Diakité in the squad. The highlight was beating Roma, in March, 3-2 with a 92nd minute Valon Behrami winner.


The following season Rozehnal stayed in Rome and played more regularly. He made 28 league appearances and 5 in Coppa Italia. Lazio finished 10th in Serie A (the highlight again beating Roma 4-2) but triumphed in the Coppa Italia. The Biancocelesti eliminated Benevento 5-1, Atalanta 2-0, Milan 2-1 away, Torino 3-1 and Juventus 4-2 on aggregate to set up a final against Sampdoria, in Rome.


On May 13 Lazio drew 1-1 with the Blucerchiati (Zárate, Pazzini) and the game went to penalties. With the shootout on 3-2 to Sampdoria, Rozehnal stepped up and slotted in his. The Biancocelesti went on to win 6-5 (7-6 in total) with Fernando Muslera saving two and Ousmane Dabo scoring the winner. A wonderful night for all Laziali.


In 2009 Rozehnal left Lazio and joined SV Hamburger in the Bundesliga. He only stayed with the "Rothosen" (The Red Trousers) for one season, playing 23 league games with 1 goal. The manager was Bruno Labbadia until April and then Dutchman Ricardo Moniz and the "Hanseaten" (The Hanseatics) finished 7th and reached the semi-finals of Europa League (Fulham 1-2 on aggregate), a pity because the final was at the Imtech Arena in Hamburg.


In 2010 he joined Lille in France. He stayed five seasons, playing 75 league games and scoring 2 goals. "Les Dogues" (The Mastiffs) won the Ligue 1 and the French Cup in his first year and then finished 3rd, 6th,3rd and 8th. His managers were Rudi Garcia, for the first three years, and then René Girard.


In 2015 he had three more seasons in Belgium with Oostende. He played 45 league games for "De Kustboys" (The Coastal Boys) and finished 5th, 4th and 11th. The manager was Yves Vanderhaeghe.


In 2016 at 36 he retired.


Rozehnal had a good international career with the Czech Republic, winning 60 caps and scoring 1 goal (Belgium). He played in the World Cup of 2006 and in Euro 2008. He also played 8 times, with 1 goal, for the U21's, winning the European Championship in 2002.


He had a satisfying club career playing 399 professional league games and winning silverware in three different countries; Belgium (1 league title, 1 Cup and 3 Super Cups), France (1 league title and 2 Cups) and Italy (1 Cup).


Rozehnal was a central defender. At 1.93 and 77 kilos he was a strong and physical player but clean. He was solid and reliable, no frills but rarely making mistakes. With his height he was obviously good in the air but only defensively as his very few career goals can testify.


At Lazio he is fondly remembered. In his only full season, he played regularly and put in good performances. It was a Lazio going through some difficulties but these were swept away with a good derby win and above all the Coppa Italia triumph. Rozehnal was third up in the tense cup final shootout, he placed a perfect mid-height penalty to the right of the Sampdoria keeper and Lazio then went on to lift the cup. Sweet memories.

Lazio Career



Serie A

Coppa Italia

Jan-Jun 2008














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