GERVINHO “I played with him at Lille and we won two trophies together. He was very good at creating.”
Gervinho (Gervais Yao Kouassi) was born in Anyama, near Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. The forward began his career in the ASEC Mimosas youth team and spent five years there. The Brazilian coach of the club gave him a ‘Gervinho’ nickname and the footballer plays under it up till now.
Soon Gervais joined then Ivorian Deuxieme Division Zone Four club Toumodi, where he played with future stars and brothers Kolo, Yaya and Ibrahim Touré for some time.
Two years later Gervinho moved to Belgian side Beveren and stayed with the club till 2007. In 2007/2008 season he played for Ligue 1 club Le Mans alongside his compatriot Romaric.
After a great season in Le Mans, scouts of different teams took an interest in the forward. The scouts of Monaco, PSG, Marseille and even Arsenal were among them. However, in July 2009 Gervais signed a three-year contract with Lille.
In July 2011, though, Gervinho transferred to Arsenal but had limited opportunities with the Gunners. After two years and 63 matches for the side Gervinho completed a transfer to Roma in August 2013.