Laporte (left) playing for Athletic Bilbao in 2014
|Full name||Aymeric Jean Louis Gérard Alphonse Laporte|
|Date of birth||27 May 1994|
|Place of birth||Agen, France|
|Height||1.91 m (6 ft 3 in)|
|Playing position||Centre back|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 14:18, 7 September 2019 (UTC)|
Aymeric Jean Louis Gérard Alphonse Laporte (French pronunciation: [?mik lapt]; born 27 May 1994) is a French professional footballer who plays as a centre back for Premier League club Manchester City.
After joining Athletic Bilbao in 2010 at the age of 16, he became only the second French player - after Bixente Lizarazu - to play for them, going on to make 220 competitive appearances for the club and score ten goals. In January 2018, he signed for Manchester City. He was part of the side which won the first domestic treble in English football in 2019.
Laporte was born in Agen, Aquitaine and is of Basque descent through his great-grandparents. He started playing football and rugby at the age of five, and began his development at SU Agen Football. In 2009 he was invited to join Athletic Bilbao after being scouted, prompting debate over whether his signing met the criteria of their policy due to his tenuous links to the Basque region; by arrangement with the club, he spent a season with Aviron Bayonnais FC as he was too young to move outside France at the time.
Laporte arrived in Bilbao formally in 2010, joining Athletic's youth setup at Lezama and going on to play for its farm and reserve teams. On 28 November 2012 he was given his debut with the main squad by manager Marcelo Bielsa, playing the full 90 minutes in a 2-0 away win against Hapoel Ironi Kiryat Shmona F.C. for the season's UEFA Europa League.
Laporte made his first La Liga appearance on 9 December 2012, appearing one minute in a 1-0 home win over Celta de Vigo. He was inserted in the starting XI the following week, helping the Lions to the same result at RCD Mallorca, and was definitely promoted to the first team shortly after, signing a new contract until 2015; on 14 January 2013, he was given the number 4 jersey previously worn by Ustaritz, and late in the month he renewed his contract, running until 2016 and with a EUR27.5 million release clause.
Laporte became an undisputed starter under new coach Ernesto Valverde, also being deployed as left back on occasion. He scored his first goal as a professional on 28 October 2013, netting the game's only at Getafe CF. At the end of the campaign, he was voted into the La Liga Team of the Year by the reporters of the Liga de Fútbol Profesional.
In June 2015, Laporte extended his link until 2019 with a release clause of EUR50 million. After losing the final of the Copa del Rey to FC Barcelona, he played both legs of the year's Supercopa de España triumph against the same opposition, Athletic's first silverware for 31 years.
On 13 June 2016, Laporte renewed his contract until 2020, with his buyout clause rising to an initial EUR65 million.
Near the end of the winter transfer window of January 2018, Laporte signed for Manchester City for a reported fee of £57 million (his contractual release clause amount and a record-breaking figure for both clubs). He was given the number 14 shirt, while Athletic immediately spent around half of the fee on Iñigo Martínez as a replacement. He made his Premier League debut the following day, playing the entire 3-0 home win against West Bromwich Albion.
Laporte scored his first goal for City on 25 August 2018, equalising against Wolverhampton Wanderers in a 1-1 away draw. He made 51 appearances during the 2018-19 season as the club completed the first domestic treble in English football history (Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup, plus the Community Shield).
Laporte represented France at under-17, under-18, under-19 and under-21 levels,captaining each side. He was part of the under-19 team that came runners-up to Serbia in the 2013 UEFA European Championship in Lithuania, and was selected in the Team of the Tournament.
On 24 March 2016, in a 2017 European Under-21 Championship qualifier against Scotland in Angers, Laporte was stretchered off with a fracture and dislocation to his right fibula and ankle, concluding his season prematurely. Previously, in October 2015, he stated that he would consider representing Spain if rejected by France for UEFA Euro 2016.
In August 2016, at the behest of new national manager Julen Lopetegui, Laporte began the process of making himself eligible for Spain. A month later, he was called up to the senior France squad for 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers against Bulgaria and the Netherlands in October, and stated he had decided not to apply for Spanish nationality with the continued aim of playing for France. He did not take part in either match.
In August 2019, he was called up for Euro 2020 qualifying fixtures against Albania and Andorra; however just two days later he was injured playing for his club and ruled out of any involvement.
|Club||Season||League||National Cup[a]||League Cup||Europe||Other||Total|
|Bilbao Athletic||2012-13||Segunda División B||8||0||--||--||--||0||0||8||0|
|Athletic Bilbao||2012-13||La Liga||15||0||0||0||--||2[b]||0||--||17||0|
|Manchester City||2017-18||Premier League||9||0||1||0||0||0||3[e]||0||--||13||0|