Last Updated on September 8, 2018 by mybiohub
Keita Baldé Diao was born on 8 March, 1995 in Arbúcies, Girona, Catalonia in Spain to Senegalese parents. He is a Senegalese professional footballer who plays as a forward for Ligue 1 club Monaco, he decided to represent Senegal, his father’s country of origin.
Keita came up through the FC Barcelona’s youth academy. In 2010, he traveled with the Barcelona youth team to Qatar for a tournament, where he played a practical joke by placing an ice-cube in a teammate’s bed. As a punishment, Barcelona sent the 15-year-old Keita on loan to satellite club UE Cornellà, despite Keita’s reputation as a future prospect for the first team. The loan meant Cornellà held the rights to a fraction of his playing rights. After a season in which he scored 47 goals for Cornellà’s youth side, Keita turned down the chance to return to Barcelona, attracting the interest of Real Madrid and Manchester United.
In the summer of 2011, Baldé was signed by Serie A club Lazio for a fee of €300,000, of which 10% went to Cornellà. He was unable to play official matches for Lazio’s youth sides for a year, as he had to wait to be granted Spanish citizenship and the EU passport required for the Italian club to register him. However, he impressed while playing in the Torneo Karol Wojtyla youth competition, where he scored six goals in just four matches.
On 29 August 2017, Keita joined Monaco on a five-year deal for a reported transfer fee of €30 million (US$35.9 million). He was assigned the number 14 shirt vacated by Tiémoué Bakayoko. On 21 October 2017, he opened the scoring in the 2-0 Ligue 1 home win over SM Caen to register his first competitive AS Monaco goal after playing seven matches in all competitions for the club.
Keita chose to play for his father’s country, Senegal, being called up by their manager, Aliou Cissé, for the match against Niger, valid for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualification Group K. He made his debut for Senegal in a 2–0 win over Niger as a late sub. Baldé also played a friendly match with Catalonia national team in December 2015 against Basque Country.