Thibaut Nicolas Biography: Thibaut Nicolas Marc Courtois a.k.a “The Octopus” is a Belgian professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for the Belgium national team and the Spanish club Real Madrid. Nicolas is a product of Belgium football club Genk, from where he graduated from its Youth System and then played a key role in the team’s Belgian Pro League. In 2011 he joined Chelsea for eight million Euros and was loaned to Atletico Madrid for three seasons in which he helped the club to conquer the 2012 Europa League, 2013 Copa del Rey, and 2014 La Liga title.
For his performances as a goalkeeper in the La Liga and the latter two seasons, he was honoured with Ricardo Zamora trophy. When Nicolas returned into Chelsea in July 2014, he helped the club to win the League Cup and Premier League title. Two years later he won the Premier League Golden Glove as Chelsea again won another League title. In 2018 he became the La Liga’s most expensive goalkeeper through signing the club Real Madrid for 35 million Euros. For his national team, he has debuted as the youngest goalkeeper. He has been a part of the national team which appeared in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, 2016 UEFA Euro and 2018 FIFA World Cup where he also won the Golden Glove award as Belgium finishes third.
Nicolas was born on 11th May 1992 in Bree, Belgium to Gitte Courtois and Thierry Courtious. He was not a born footballer, but a volleyball player. He was clumsy and absent-minded during his young age due to which he was prone to accidents. Broken ankle bone, jammed finger, handlebar in the groin, a gaping wound were some of his common accidents and injuries due to which hospital can be considered as his second home. At the age of five, Nicolas decided to choose football as his Professional carrier.
He joined the local side club Bilzen V.V, there he started playing for the position of left-back. Despite being eighteen-month younger than that of his team-mates he looked strong and tough. His performances gradually started attracting the scouts of Racing Genk who later approached him for one of their trials. Nicolas successfully passed the trial and joined the Club in 1999 as a goalkeeper.
Nicolas’s parents and sister are volleyball players, her sister Valerie plays as a libero for Budowlani Lod and Belgium. Nicolas is the only member of their family who is in a different sport. Nicolas is in a long-term relationship with his girlfriend Marta Dominguez. The couple was blessed with a baby on 26th May 2015, named Adriana.
Despite a nice family, the relationship between him and her girlfriend didn’t last long as they got separated in April 2017. By the time they ended their relationship, Marta was eight-month pregnant and a month later she gave birth to Nicolas’s son.
When Nicolas turned 18, he graduated from the youth system of Genk and joined the club Chelsea for nine million Euros on a five-year deal, but soon within weeks he joined Atletico Madrid on loan, he was assigned the jersey number 13 previously worn by David de Gea. Nicolas debuted from Atletico Madrid’s 2011-12 season in a match against Vitoria de Guimaraes in a 4-0 victory at UEFA Europa League. Three days later he kept a clean sheet on his La Liga debut in a draw against the Osasuna. His performances in La Liga made him the first-choice goalkeeper over Sergio Asenjo as he kept four clean sheets in his first six La Liga matches.
While playing against the Spanish giants Real Madrid he received his first red card after fouling Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema for a penalty, eventually, the team lost the game by 1-4. During his debut season, the club reached the 2012 UEFA Europa League Final where he kept a clean sheet as the club won 3-0 over the Athletic Bilbao.
Following his brilliant performance, the loan term was extended by the club till 2013-14. Playing the 2013-14 season with the club he played a major role as a part of the team which became the runner up of the UEFA Champions League 2013-14 season. In the same season, he was included in the ESM Team of the Year as well as was honoured with Best Belgian player award.
After a good experience with Atletico Madrid on a loan he returned to Chelsea, the club’s manager Jose Mourinho announced it in June 2014. On his return, he was assigned the jersey number 13 last worn by Victor Moses.
On 18th August the club manager announced that Nicolas would start the Premier League. After few matches in Premier League tournaments against the Burnley and Leicester City, he signed a fresh five-year contract with Chelsea keeping him until 2019.
In the season ahead, his team won the League Cup by defeating Tottenham Hotspur by 2–0 in the League Cup Final. Following his days ahead with the club, he assisted his team to conquer 2016-17 Premier League and 2017-18 FA Cup.
After 2018 FIFA World Cup, where he got Golden Glove for being best goalkeeper, he expressed his interest to move to Real Madrid, but Chelsea stated that they will not let him go until they found a better replacement of Nicolas. In response to the statement, Nicolas stopped attending the club’s training session. Finally, on 8th August 2018, Nicolas signed a six-year contract with Real Madrid. He made his debut for Madrid on 1st September 2018 in a 4-1 win against CD Leganes.
For his Belgium National team, he has been the part of the squad which contested in 2014 World cup, 2016 UEFA Euro and 2018 World Cup where his team finishes third after France won the tournament eventually he was awarded as the Golden Glove for being the best goalkeeper of the tournament.
|Atletico Madrid (loan)||2011-14|
|Real Madrid||2018- Current|
- Belgian Pro League: 2010–11
- La Liga: 2013–14
- Copa del Rey: 2012–13
- UEFA Europa League: 2011–12
- UEFA Super Cup: 2012
- UEFA Champions League runner-up: 2013–14
- Premier League: 2014–15, 2016–17
- FA Cup: 2017–18; runner-up: 2016–17
- Football League Cup: 2014–15
- FIFA Club World Cup: 2018
- FIFA World Cup third-place: 2018
- Belgian Professional Goalkeeper of the Year: 2011
- Belgian Bronze Shoe: 2011
- La LigaZamora Trophy: 2013, 2014
- La Liga Goalkeeper of the Year: 2013
- Best Belgian Player Abroad: 2013, 2014
- ESM Team of the Year: 2013–14
- UEFA Champions League Team of the Season: 2013–14[
- FIFA FIFPro World XI2nd team: 2014, 2018
- London Football Awards Goalkeeper of the Year: 2015
- Belgian Sportsman of the year: 2014
- Premier League Golden Glove: 2016–17
- FIFA World Cup Golden Glove: 2018
- FIFA World Cup Dream Team: 2018
- FIFA World Cup Fantasy McDonald’s Overall XI: 2018
- The Best FIFA Goalkeeper: 2018
- IFFHS World’s Best Goalkeeper: 2018; runner-up 2014
- IFFHS Men’s World Team: 2018
Height: 6ft 6in
Eye colour: Black
Hair colour: Black
Full Name: Thibaut Nicolas Marc Courtois
Date of Birth: 11th May 1992
Place of Birth: Belgium
Playing Position: Goalkeeper
Relationships: Marta Dominguez (Ex-Girlfriend)
Kids: Adriana Courtois and Nicolas Courtois
HOBBIES: Playing Volleyball and Table Tennis
10 Million dollars