Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa


Name: Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa
Squad number: 13
Nationality: French
Born: 15th May, 1989, Bangui, Central African Republic
Height: 184cm
Weight: 81kg
Previous clubs: Montpellier
Signed: January 2013, from Montpellier
Newcastle United debut: 29th January, 2013 v Aston Villa (a), Premier League



Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa became Newcastle United's second signing of the January transfer window when he arrived on Tyneside on 22nd January, 2013.


The defender signed from Montpellier for an undisclosed fee, putting pen to paper on a five-and-a-half year deal at St. James' Park, and took on the number 13 shirt.


His debut came seven days later as a late substitute in a 2-1 win away at Aston Villa, and Yanga-Mbiwa was handed his first start in a Magpies' shirt at the beginning of March away at Swansea.



Early Days

Born in Bangui, in the Central African Republic, Yanga-Mbiwa moved to France as a toddler and grew up in the commune of Port-de-Bouc, near Marseille.


He joined Montpellier at the age of 13 and progressed through the youth ranks at the Stade de la Mosson before making his professional debut at the age of 17, on 23rd February, 2007, in a 1-0 defeat to Bastia.


Yanga-Mbiwa helped La Paillade win promotion from Ligue 2 in 2008/09, and went on to captain them to their first ever Ligue 1 title at the 2011/12 campaign.



International Career

Eligible to play for both France and the Central African Republic, Yanga-Mbiwa chose to represent Les Bleus, and was called up to their Under 21 side in October 2009.


The defender was named in the French senior preliminary squad for Euro 2012 but missed out on the final cut. However, he didn't have to wait too long for his debut, which came in August 2012 in a friendly against Uruguay.


To date, Yanga-Mbiwa has three caps for his country.