Gaston Ramirez

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Gaston Ramirez is a Uruguayan attacking midfielder who was born in Fray Bentos, Uruguay on 2nd December 1990. Ramirez began his career at Penarol, making his first team debut in March 2009. A few months later he represented Uruguay at the FIFA U20 World Cup. Ramirez quickly established himself as one of the hottest prospects in South America, netting his first Penarol goal in a 5-0 win against Atenas on 12th December 2009. He picked up a 2009/10 league title winners medal in his first full season, contributing with six goals. Ramirez was sent off in his final Penarol appearance against Nacional on 18th May 2010.

Ramirez signed for Bologna on 19th August 2010. He joined countrymen Henry Gimenez and Diego Perez at Stadio Renato D'all'Ara. Ramirez impressed instantly for Rossoblu, exhibiting a great degree of skill and inventiveness in his play. The former Penarol man won his first international cap for Uruguay in a 7-1 win over Indonesia on 8th October 2010. A few weeks later he opened his goal-scoring account for Bologna with a brace against Modena. He helped the club overcome a points deduction to survive in Serie A for 2010/11. Ramirez progressed even further during 2011/12, driving Bologna to a 9th place finish with a series of eye-catching displays. He proved he could stand with the very best, netting against Milan at the San Siro on 22nd April 2011.

Ramirez represented Uruguay at the 2012 Olympics. He netted an unstoppable 35 yard free kick in a 2-1 win over UAE at the Olympics. That wasn't enough for Uruguay however, who were knocked out at the group stage of the competition.

On 31st August Ramirez joined Southampton for a club record fee. The deal was subject to intense negotiations for weeks, and was rumoured to be on the verge of collapse more than once. Saints eventually saw off reported competition from the likes of Tottenham and Liverpool to secure Ramirez's signature. The fee was believed to be in the region of €15,000,000.

The Uruguayan was the only bright spark in the 6-1 defeat at Arsenal, making his debut as a second half substitute. Ramirez pulled the strings in the 4-1 win over Aston Villa a week later, before scoring his first goal in a 3-1 defeat at Everton. He then suffered an injury which would keep him out for the next few weeks. The former Bologna man was rushed back for the 2-0 defeat at West Brom on 5th November, but took a few games to get up to speed with the rest of his teammates. He scored in a scintillating display against Newcastle on 25th November. Less impressive against Norwich and Liverpool. Flew home to Uruguay for personal reasons prior to the Reading game in December 2012. He was benched on a couple of occasions over Christmas and New Year's. Showed his true quality with a goal in the 1-1 draw with Arsenal on January 1st 2013. Described by Phil Neville as the toughest opponent he had faced all season following an energetic showing in a 0-0 draw with Everton on January 21st 2013. He was disappointing in games against Man United, Wigan and Newcastle. Found the net with decent strikes against QPR and West Ham. Ramirez was sent off for lashing out at West Brom's Shane Long in his final appearance of the 2012/13 season.