Mathis Rayan Cherki, known by his middle Rayan, is a French professional footballer who plays for Lyon as an attacking midfielder. He also plays for the French national team. Read on to find out more facts about Rayan Cherki.
Rayan Cherki was born on 17 August 2003, meaning that Rayan Cherki’s age is 17 as of 2020.
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Rayan Cherkistarted his career from the youth academy of Lyon, and is considered as one of their best ever prospects.
Mathis Rayan Cherki was born on 17 August 2003 in the 3rd arrondissement of Lyon, France. Rayan’s Father, Fabrice, was originally from Italy but his parental grandmother moved to France from Bari, Apulia in Italy, making them French in later generations.
An interesting fact about Rayan Cherki’s parents is that they are of Algerian descent. However, his father is reported to be of Italian descent.
He has two older brothers who were into football and played occasionally, one could say his brothers were the reason Rayan is now one of the young stars in the field.
On starting football, he said in an interview with the OLTV, “My two big brothers were into soccer and one day one of my brothers had a game at the Gerland playground. My father parked in the parking lot, I started to juggle and run and Gérard Bonneau (OL's former recruiter) crossed paths with me and told me that I have a 95% chance of returning to OL with what I had just done.”
“The following Wednesday, I was at the trials. Our father transmitted this passion and this way of life to us. Football is a religion for us and I thank him for it every day.
I have a technical side but it’s my competitive side, always wanting to be first that allowed me to make a difference with I was injured in the U14 for a year and that hardened me because I realized that football was not just for fun and everything could be lost quickly.”
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Rayan Cherki currently plays for Olympique Lyonnais club with the chosen number of 18. He used to play with the number 36. Rayan Cherki Stats for this season are getting better and better every day. He has played 13 matches so far for 389 minutes. He holds one red card and one yellow card with no goals and no assists yet achieved.
During the pandemic, he couldn’t go to training camps like before and he admitted that the period of confinement for him was really hard but he managed to still what he loved: “Everything went very well. This period allowed me to regain my focus and rest, even if it came at a difficult time.
I wish that the season had continued. We have to deal with it. Health is the most important thing. I was able to bike with my brothers, walk, cook with my mother. I trained by myself physically, as I used to do. Life without football is difficult. We are used to doing this every day, it becomes something that's missing.
I was surprised and disappointed with the shutdown of Ligue 1. I wish that the season had continued. I am thinking of the Youth League and Champions League matches. I hope I can play them.”
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Regarding Rayan Cherki Body Measurements, it is worth mentioning that he is right-footed and with 70 kg weight and 176 cm height therefore, he is the perfect choice for playing as the attacking midfielder in the center. Although he is more comfortable in the center, he has played on the sidelines too.
Discussing about Rayan Cherki social media, it should be mentioned that like any other teenage soul, Rayan Cherki also has an Instagram account on which he shares his victories. His Instagram account (@Rayan_Cherki) has almost 220k followers. Although Rayan Cherki’s personal life is out of the spotlight, he shows his commitment to football even in his posts.
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The 17-year-old Lyon talent started his club career in 2009 when he was only 6 years old. He played for Saint-Priest until 2010 before going to Lyon club. His time in the youth academy of Lyon made him their best catch.
In the 2018-2019 season, Cherki showed a great amount of skill and technique during a game against Manchester City, a 4-1 win. After that game, he became the youngest goalscorer in the Youth League at 15 years of age. In Europe, the Youth League is as same as the Champions League for under 19 players.
He started his professional career with the U17 squad in the play-offs and passed all the levels rather quickly and smoothly. Later, he continued his journey in the Coupe Gambardella by joining the U19 squad in which he became an incredible precocious talent.
Rayan Cherki had the unanimous approval of the Academy managers and coaches who see great potential in him as a young striker.
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The highly recommended 15-year-old attacker signed the contracts to stay in Lyon for the next three years. After the event, OL displayed on their official website the news about Rayan Cherki, “The 15-year-old attacker joined our Academy in 2010 from Saint-Priest at the age of seven, quickly becoming one of the club's top prospects thanks to his overall football skills, his sense of dribbling and goal-scoring capacities. This quality allowed the young Lyon native to move into another dimension during the 2018-19 season.”
The young striker reacted to his new deal as follows: “I am very happy to sign my first professional contract at my academy club. It's the culmination of many years of work. Now the hard part begins. It will take a lot of work to progress.
The arrival of Juninho also tipped the scales. I watched videos of his free-kicks when I was little and today, I will be able to rub elbows with him.”
At the end of the 2019-2020 season, Olympique Lyonnais was very pleased to confirm that they had extended Rayan Cherki’s contract for an additional season, until June 30, 2023. They are ready for an amazing season with young promising players who are all experienced players with the Academy experience.
Cherki made his senior debut for the Olympique Lyonnais on 27 November 2019 in a Champions League group game against Zenit when he was only 16 years old. He was not the first choice for the game, he played as a substitute to Maxwel Cornet in the 74th minute of a 0-2 loss in Saint Petersburg Stadium.
Cherki’s first goal was during a game he was again playing as a substitute on 4 January 2020 in a 7-0 win over Bourg-Péronnas in the Coupe de France. After doing so, he became the youngest ever player to score a goal for Lyon in senior years, aged 16 years and 140 days.
Rayan’s only aim after his first professional match was to find the competitive drive to continue his progress to the highest level.
He later revealed that he didn’t expect to score any goals in the game at all: “I did not expect to score in this match (vs Bourg-Péronnas in the Coupe de France) as it was the 90th minute, but fortune smiled on me and to score this goal is a good thing.
Having this reception from the crowd, that was a real moment of happiness for me. I knew I was going to beat the record for youngest scorer; I look at those records because it gives me strength and makes me want to fight. I want to have the records and go back into the history of the club so that nobody can take them off of me.”
“I work more every day than the others to reach my goals. I am a little brooding towards everyone but my family makes me keep my head on my shoulders and this is the most important thing for me. Tactically I sometimes have trouble in the final third, but over time I will be able to let go more as I did in N2 in particular. I can't yet do certain things with the pros.”
Looking at his first professional season he explained: “I will only remember the positive moments, the moments of joy spent with my teammates. That is the most important. I hope next season will be even better ... I remember the match in Nantes.
This is my most successful performance and I am proud of it. Becoming the youngest OL player to score was one of my goals. It will remain etched in my memory.”
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One of the important facts about Rayan Cherki to take into account is that he was reaching all these high places at 16 years of age and that was a lot of pressure on a young man but most of his financial situation was and still is managed by his family.
About the pressure on him at the age of 16 he said, “I manage it rather easily. My family is helping me. It's still football. This is what I love to do most in life. I don't necessarily have a lot of pressure. I am fully involved no matter what competition I am playing in.”
On 18 January, he assisted two goals and scored another two in a 4-3 win over Nantes in another Coupe de France game.
After the game and the appreciation that Cherki received Rudi Garcia, his coach, showed how satisfied he is with his young striker: “He's a boy who listens and works. What I liked most, like everyone, were his two goals, his two assists and the penalty he won.
“But I also saw a Rayan who is making an effort, who does his defensive work, who makes good choices in the game, and who plays with his teammates. This shows me that he is progressing and it is more in this area that I am happy with this performance.
Above all, I must protect him now because everyone is going to want to accelerate his importance, and he is only 16 years old. This will be my role because if he stops working if he thinks it's easy, we will have lost everything.”
Rayan on the other hand stayed humble and did not forget who he was and how he is reaching the top: “It’s thanks to my teammates that I had this match, you shouldn’t look only at my statistics, it’s the whole team. We have to deal with the fixtures that are coming now.”
A few months later, on 19 August 2020, he was again subbed on in a UEFA Champions League game against Bayern Munich which Lyon lost the game by a score of 0-3 and got knocked out of the competition. However, Cherki became the youngest ever player to be playing in a UCL semi-final.
His strategy and vision for the game have mesmerized everyone. He not only has potential in wide ranges of strikes and dribbles but also, he has a great eye for the ball and the memory to play out the game in his head.
Another interesting fact about Cherki is that he is already catching attention from the biggest clubs of the world such as Juventus, AC Milan, Bayern Munich, Ajax Amsterdam, and FC Barcelona who all have paid their respective interests in having Rayan Cherki on their team to Jean-Michel Aulas, CEO, and founder of Lyon.
According to the newspaper L'Équipe before coming to OL he could even consider going to play for Real Madrid, “His situation bothers OL, which is trying to find an agreement with his family to anticipate the signing of his first professional contract, which would come into force when he turned sixteen, next August.
But the non-solicitation agreement (NSA) between the two parties will expire at the end of the season. This gives the player the possibility of signing freely, when he comes of age, with a foreign club. The English clubs returned to the charge. And several major European clubs have been sending recruiters for several months to observe Cherki.”
“At the club, some are even convinced that the player has reached an agreement with Real Madrid. Jean-Michel Aulas would especially face insane offers from English clubs for a player not far from signing up for Chelsea, at the age of twelve…”
However, the agents of OL didn’t want to lose him as not to regret it later just as happened with Zidane, Benzema, Nasri, and Fekir. So, they offered the teenage phenomenon a good deal he couldn’t say no to.
Even though he is almost not a teenager anymore, Cherki has engaged on all fronts with OL. His general performances through these years he spent with Les Gones earned him a spot on the first team training list.
Rayan Cherki’s future career club with Olympique Lyonnais is only beginning to unravel and he has a bright future ahead of himself.
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Another important fact about Rayan Cherki is that he was qualified enough to play for Algeria and Italy through his parents and grandparents, yet he decided to represent his native country, France. He has played for the French national under-16 team twice in 2018. Both games were friendly matches against Denmark.
As another fact about Rayan Cherki, it is worth mentioning that his current market value until its last update on 15 October 2020 is estimated to be €25.00 million which is at its highest. Since his last contract with OL, his value has risen gradually. When he was only 16 years old in April, he was valued at €18.00 million. Therefore, it is likely that Cherki’s value is only getting higher each season.
His rank number among all players worldwide is 274 and his rank among all players of the Ligue 1 is 21, those are not very high numbers which is only suggesting how important this 17-year-old striker is to the world of football.
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An interesting fact about Rayan Cherki is that even though he is right-footed he can shoot with both feet quite forcefully. Being the youngest player in Ligue 1 in history, he is skillful in front of goal and has an amazing dribbling technique. He has a very powerful and incisive style of play. He is fast and usually is at the heart of the game.
His previous futsal training allows him to move very comfortably and intelligently on the pitch. His astonishing speed allows him to move past his opponents and to be technically superior at all times.
Because of his uncanny abilities and incredible skill, the number 18 Lyon player is regularly called to be training with the first team. Asking him if he was surprised to playing with the first team so quickly after he joined the club he answered:
“No, I have very high goals. It is thanks to the hard work that I was able to play for the first time in Ligue 1 this season. It’s easy to fit into a group when you’re young; your teammates help you.
I'm close to Maxence Caqueret and Amine Gouiri because we played together in the Youth League, but also Moussa Dembélé, Jason Denayer, Karl Toko Ekambi, Oumar Solet ... I was quickly integrated into the squad. They made me feel at home.”
New Lyon coach, Rudi Garcia is always praising him and convincing him not to give up as he has a desire to train the young people at the training center. “I think it’s in OL’s DNA,” he said.
Rayan said that he feels good to be playing with his teammates and it doesn’t matter to him in which position he plays, he said he could even play as a central defender if his coach lets him. “As a competitor, I don’t like playing on the sidelines but those are the choices of the coach,” he said in an interview.
The final fact about Rayan Cherki is his net worth, which has been growing significantly in since 2018. Rayan Cherki’s salary source is mostly from being a successful football player. It is estimated that Rayan Cherki’s net worth is between $1 Million - $5 Million. However, there is not enough information about his cars, houses, or other assets.