Borja Oubiña

Borja Oubiña
Borja Oubiña 2.JPG
Oubiña in 2013
Personal information
Full name Borja Oubiña Meléndez
Date of birth (1982-05-17) 17 May 1982 (age 35)
Place of birth Vigo, Spain
Height 1.81 m (5 ft 11 12 in) [1]
Playing position Defensive midfielder
Youth career
1989–1990 Moledo
1989–1996 Gran Peña
1996–2001 Celta
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2001–2004 Celta B 67 (4)
2004–2015 Celta 217 (5)
2007–2008 Birmingham City (loan) 2 (0)
Total 286 (9)
National team
2006 Spain 2 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Borja Oubiña Meléndez (born 17 May 1982) is a Spanish retired footballer who played as a defensive midfielder.

After starting his professional career at local Celta, he played in England with Birmingham City in 2007, but his spell was immediately cut short with a severe knee injury, which would relapse in the following years. [2] He appeared in 238 competitive games for his main club, for which he appeared in five La Liga seasons.

Club career

Oubiña training with Celta in 2009

A ball-winning midfielder who came through the youth teams of hometown Celta de Vigo, Oubiña was born in Vigo, and he first appeared with the first team – courtesy of Miguel Ángel Lotina – during 2003–04, in a 2–2 away draw against Valencia CF, as the Galicians, then also participating in the UEFA Champions League, eventually finished second from bottom in La Liga; he became a mainstay in the subsequent seasons, under Fernando Vázquez. [3]

After Celta's top flight relegation in the 2006–07 campaign, Oubiña stated his desire to leave, although still under contract and, as of August, it seemed that countryman José Antonio Camacho's S.L. Benfica were in the pole to acquire his services, but an agreement could not be reached on a fee – rumoured to be 10 million. [4]

On 31 August 2007, a one-year loan to Premier League side Birmingham City was agreed. [5] Oubiña made his Birmingham debut on 15 September, as a late substitute against Bolton Wanderers; after 13 minutes of the next game, at Liverpool, he sustained an injury in a collision with Dirk Kuyt to his left anterior cruciate ligament, and was expected to be sidelined for at least six months. [6]

On 9 February 2008, Oubiña's loan spell at Birmingham was cancelled by mutual consent, [7] and he returned to Vigo to start his recovery. On 6 December, more than a year after his last appearance, he played four minutes in a 0–2 loss at UD Las Palmas, and appeared in a further 14 games in the season; he relapsed in mid-September 2009, and underwent surgery in October preparatory to the planned reconstruction of his cruciate ligament in early 2010, after which he would miss the remainder of 2009–10. [8]

Oubiña returned to full fitness in the 2011–12 campaign, [9] playing 28 matches (24 starts, 2,120 minutes of action) as Celta returned to the top level after a five-year absence. [10]

In 2014–15, Oubiña again failed to appear in any games due to injury. [11] On 22 May 2015, five days after his 33rd birthday, he announced his retirement. [12]

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