José Callejón

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José Callejón
Russia-Spain 2017 (4).jpg
Callejón playing for Spain in 2017
Personal information
Full nameJosé María Callejón Bueno
Date of birth (1987-02-11) 11 February 1987 (age 32)
Place of birth Motril, Spain
Height 1.78 m (5 ft 10 in) [1]
Playing position Forward / Winger
Club information
Current team
Number 7
Youth career
Costa Tropical
2002–2006 Real Madrid
Senior career*
2006–2007 Real Madrid C 4 (0)
2007–2008 Real Madrid B 41 (21)
2008–2011 Espanyol 97 (10)
2011–2013 Real Madrid 55 (8)
2013– Napoli 218 (60)
National team
2008–2009 Spain U21 4 (1)
2014– Spain 5 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league onlyand correct as of 17:31, 28 April 2019 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 14 November 2017

José María Callejón Bueno (Spanish pronunciation:  [xoˈse kaʎeˈxon] ; born 11 February 1987) is a Spanish professional footballer who plays for Italian club S.S.C. Napoli as a forward or winger.

Association football Team field sport

Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played with a spherical ball between two teams of eleven players. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport. The game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal.

S.S.C. Napoli association football club

Società Sportiva Calcio Napoli, commonly referred to as Napoli, is an Italian professional football club based in Naples, Campania that plays in Serie A, the top flight of Italian football. The club have won two league titles, five Coppa Italias, two Supercoppa Italiana titles, and one UEFA Cup.

Forward (association football) Association Football position played near the opponents goal

Forwards are the players on an association football team who play nearest to the opposing team's goal, and are therefore most responsible for scoring goals.


He began his career with the reserve teams of Real Madrid, but made a name for himself at Espanyol. In 2011 he returned to his previous club and, two years later, left for Napoli.

RCD Espanyol sports club in Spain

Reial Club Deportiu Espanyol de Barcelona, commonly known as Espanyol de Barcelona, or simply as Espanyol, is a professional sports club based in Barcelona, Spain.

A under-21 international, Callejón made his senior debut for Spain in 2014.

Spain national under-21 football team under-21 association football team representing Spain

The Spain national under-21 football team is the national under-21 football team of Spain and is controlled by the Royal Spanish Football Federation. The team, nicknamed La Rojita, competes in the biennial UEFA European Under-21 Championship.

Spain national football team National association football team representing Spain

The Spain national football team has represented Spain in international men's football competition since 1920. It is governed by the Royal Spanish Football Federation, the governing body for football in Spain.

Club career

Real Madrid

A product of Real Madrid youth ranks, Callejón was born in Motril, Granada, Andalusia. He made his professional debut for the reserves in May 2007, [2] and played four games in that season's Segunda División without scoring a goal. [3]

Motril Municipality in Andalusia, Spain

Motril is a town and municipality on the Mediterranean coast in the province of Granada, Spain. It is the second largest town in the province, with a population of 60,368 as of 2016. The town is located near the Guadalfeo River and 69 km (43 mi) from Granada. The council of Motril includes the city of Motril and the neighbourhoods of El Varadero, Carchuna, Calahonda, Puntalón, Playa Granada, Las Ventillas, La Perla, La Garnatilla and La Chucha. The town is the capital of the region of the Coast of Granada.

Province of Granada Province of Spain

Granada is a province of southern Spain, in the eastern part of the autonomous community of Andalusia. It is bordered by the provinces of Albacete, Murcia, Almería, Jaén, Córdoba, Málaga, and the Mediterranean Sea. Its capital city is also called Granada.

Andalusia Autonomous community of Spain

Andalusia is an autonomous community in southern Spain. It is the most populous, and the second largest autonomous community in the country. The Andalusian autonomous community is officially recognised as a "historical nationality". The territory is divided into eight provinces: Almería, Cádiz, Córdoba, Granada, Huelva, Jaén, Málaga and Seville. Its capital is the city of Seville.

In the 2007–08 campaign, Callejón appeared in 37 matches and netted 21 times, finishing as team top scorer but in Segunda División B. [4] [5]

The Segunda División B 2007–08 season was the 31st since its establishment. The first matches of the season were played on 25 August 2007, and the season ended on 15 June 2008 with the promotion play-off finals.

Segunda División B third tier of the football pyramid of professional football league in Spain

Segunda División B is the third level of the Spanish football league system currently divided into 4 groups of 20 teams each. It is administered by the RFEF. It is below the top two levels of the league, the Primera División and the Segunda División, and above the Tercera División. The Segunda División B includes the reserve teams of several La Liga and Segunda División teams.


Callejon taking a corner for Espanyol in 2009 JoseCallejon.JPG
Callejón taking a corner for Espanyol in 2009

At the end of the season, Callejón left Real Madrid (with twin brother Juanmi) and signed a four-year contract with RCD Espanyol. [6] [7] He made his La Liga debut on 20 September 2008, as a late substitute in a 1–1 home draw against Getafe CF. [8]

Juan Miguel "Juanmi" Callejón Bueno is a Spanish footballer who plays as a midfielder for Club Bolívar in Bolivia.

La Liga Top professional Spanish football division

The Campeonato Nacional de Liga de Primera División, commonly known as La Liga, is the men's top professional football division of the Spanish football league system. Administered by the Liga Nacional de Fútbol Profesional, also known as the Liga de Fútbol Profesional (LFP), La Liga is contested by 20 teams, with the three lowest-placed teams at the end of each season relegated to the Segunda División and replaced by the top three teams in that division.

Substitute (association football) replacement player in association football (soccer)

In association football, a substitute is a player who is brought on to the pitch during a match in exchange for an existing player. Substitutions are generally made to replace a player who has become tired or injured, or who is performing poorly, or for tactical reasons. Unlike some sports, but like in baseball, a player who has been substituted during a match may take no further part in it.

On 15 March 2009, as Espanyol struggled immensely in the league – eventually ranking in tenth position – Callejón scored his first goal for the Catalans in a 3–3 home draw against RCD Mallorca. [9] He continued to be an undisputed starter under Mauricio Pochettino in the following campaigns, operating mainly as a winger. [10]

On 15 January 2011, Callejón scored twice to help to a 2–1 away defeat of Sevilla FC. [11] He only missed one league game and netted six times for the Pericos, who finished comfortably in mid-table. [12]

Return to Real Madrid

On 23 May 2011, Callejón re-joined Real Madrid on a five-year deal effective as of 1 July, for a reported fee of 5.5 million. [13] On 16 July, he played his first match for them in a 4–1 friendly win over the Los Angeles Galaxy, scoring the first goal of the game in the 30th minute. [14]

On 2 October 2011, Callejón netted his first official goal for Real Madrid after coming on midway through the second half of an away fixture against former club Espanyol; he scored from a Cristiano Ronaldo assist in an eventual 4–0 win but did not celebrate the goal, instead raising his arms in the air in a mark of respect for his former employer. [15]

Profiting from the fact that his team had already qualified from the UEFA Champions League group stage as leaders, Callejón was handed a rare start by manager José Mourinho on 22 November 2011, and responded by scoring a brace in a 6–2 home triumph against NK Dinamo Zagreb. [16] He added another two in the last round, at AFC Ajax (3–0). [17]

As a starter, Callejón continued with his impressive scoring form: he scored once in a 6–2 away win over Sevilla on 17 December 2011, [18] and in the tie against SD Ponferradina for the season's Copa del Rey he netted three of his team's seven aggregate goals, scoring one away and two at home. [19] [20]

On 14 January 2012, Callejón scored the winner in a 2–1 success at Mallorca, helping the visitors come from behind with his 84th-minute long-range strike. [21] In the following matchday he added another, closing the score in a 4–1 home win over Athletic Bilbao. [22]


Callejon (wearing No.7) playing for Napoli against Barcelona, 2014 Barca - Napoli - 20140806 - Salut des equipes.jpg
Callejón (wearing No.7) playing for Napoli against Barcelona, 2014

On 9 July 2013, Italian club S.S.C. Napoli announced that they had reached an agreement for the transfer of Callejón for €10 million. [23] [24] The four-year deal was confirmed two days later. [25]

Callejón scored in his Serie A debut on 25 August, netting the opener in a 3–0 home win over Bologna F.C. 1909, [26] and went on to find the net a further seven times in his first 20 official appearances. On 22 October, he scored his first goal in Europe for his new team, grabbing his team's first in a 2–1 triumph at Olympique de Marseille in the Champions League group stage. [27]

On 3 May 2014, Callejón set up Dries Mertens for the third goal in a 3–1 success over ACF Fiorentina in the final of the campaign's Coppa Italia. [28] He scored once in the final game of the season, a 5–1 home win against Hellas Verona F.C. on 18 May; his strike after five minutes was Napoli's 100th goal in all competitions that season, and his 20th overall. [29]

Callejón netted his first goal of 2014–15 on the opening day of the Serie A campaign, the opener in a 2–1 win over Genoa CFC. [30] His second came on 24 September, as he scored at the stroke of half-time to put Napoli up 3–2 against U.S. Città di Palermo in an eventual 3–3 home draw. [31] On 19 October, he scored twice in a 2–2 draw at Internazionale, with all four of the game's goals coming in the match's last 11 minutes. [32]

In the Derby del Sole match against A.S. Roma on 2 November, Callejón hit the post and had a shot saved off the line before eventually finding the net late on in Napoli's 2–0 victory. [33] The strike took his league goal tally to eight on the season, two more than his closest competitors, and he was included in the Serie A Team of the Week lineup. [34]

On 17 September 2015, Callejón scored twice in Napoli's first game of the UEFA Europa League group stage, a 5–0 home routing of Club Brugge KV. [35] For the same competition, away to FC Midtjylland on 22 October, he volleyed a long pass from Kalidou Koulibaly to open a 4–1 victory; UEFA dubbed the latter effort an "early contender for goal of the group stage". [36]

On 9 April 2017, Callejón marked his 200th appearance for the Azzurri with his 57th goal, in a 3–0 league win over S.S. Lazio. [37] His 300th came on 28 April 2019, in the 2–0 away victory over Frosinone Calcio. [38]

International career

Callejón made his debut for the Spanish under-21 team on 25 March 2008 against Kazakhstan in a 2009 UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifier; he entered the field in the 46th minute after replacing Bojan Krkić, and scored shortly after in a 5–0 win. [39]

On 7 November 2014, Callejón was called up to the full side for the first time, being picked by Vicente del Bosque for matches against Belarus and Germany. [40] He made his debut on the 15th against the former, coming on for Santi Cazorla in the 69th minute of the 3–0 triumph in Huelva for the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying phase. [41]

Style of play

A versatile, tenacious and hard-working right-footed player, Callejón is capable of playing anywhere along the front line, and has been used as a forward, as a winger on either flank, in the centre as an attacking midfielder and as a supporting striker. Although he usually occupies a position in or behind the main attacking line, due to his personality and ability to provide balance to his teams by linking-up play between the forwards and midfielders, he is also capable of playing in the centre as a main striker, and was also occasionally deployed in deeper roles under Mourinho during his time at Real Madrid, as a central midfielder or even as an attacking full-back or wingback.

A quick, mobile and creative player, with good technical ability, Callejón is capable of both creating and scoring goals, due to his powerful shot and excellent offensive movement off the ball, as demonstrated by his ability to lose his markers by make attacking runs in behind the defensive line and into the area from deeper or wider areas. He is also a good header of the ball, in spite of his average stature. [42] [43] [44] [45] [46] [47]

Personal life

Callejón's twin brother Juanmi was also a footballer, and both were Real Madrid graduates. [48]

Career statistics


Callejon in action for Napoli in 2014 Callejon Napoli.jpg
Callejón in action for Napoli in 2014
As of match played 25 May 2019 [49] [50]
Real Madrid B 2006–07 4040
2007–08 37213721
Espanyol 2008–09 24262304
2009–10 36210372
2010–11 37620396
Real Madrid 2011–12 25563553613
2012–13 3037242417
Napoli 2013–14 3715531025220
2014–15 3811501615912
2015–16 38721754713
2016–17 371442814917
2017–18 3810201025012
2018–19 34320111474
Career totals4119942137119524131
1Includes domestic cups and other competitive competitions, including the Supercopa de España and the Supercoppa Italiana.


As of 14 November 2017 [51]



Callejon (right) on the ball in the 2014 Supercoppa Italiana Save the Dream at the Supercoppa (29878345333).jpg
Callejón (right) on the ball in the 2014 Supercoppa Italiana
Real Madrid [49]
Napoli [49]


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