Gylfi with Iceland at the 2018 FIFA World Cup
|Full name||Gylfi Þór Sigurðsson|
|Date of birth||8 September 1989|
|Place of birth||Reykjavík, Iceland|
|Height||1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)|
|2008||→ Shrewsbury Town (loan)||5||(1)|
|2009||→ Crewe Alexandra (loan)||15||(3)|
|2012||→ Swansea City (loan)||18||(7)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 23:27, 23 May 2021 (UTC)|
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 19:27, 15 November 2020 (UTC)
Gylfi Þór Sigurðsson (Icelandic pronunciation: [ˈcɪlvɪ ˈθouːr̥ ˈsɪːɣʏrðsɔn]; translated as Gylfi Thor Sigurdsson; born 8 September 1989) is an Icelandic professional footballer who plays as an attacking midfielder for Premier League club Everton and the Iceland national team.
Gylfi began his professional career with Reading in the Championship and in 2010, was sold to 1899 Hoffenheim, which was Reading's biggest sale at the time. He was voted Player of the Season for two consecutive seasons: for Reading in 2009–10 and for Hoffenheim in 2010–11. After a season back in English football with Swansea City, he joined Tottenham Hotspur for a reported £8 million transfer fee. In 2014, he moved back to Swansea as part of an exchange for Ben Davies. In 2017 he transferred to Everton, where he remains.
Gylfi made his senior international debut for Iceland in 2010 and has since earned over 70 caps. He represented Iceland at their first major tournament, UEFA Euro 2016, where his country reached the quarter-finals. He also played at his nation's first ever FIFA World Cup in 2018.
Born in Reykjavík, Gylfi played for hometown side FH before joining Breiðablik and was an Icelandic under-17 international. He had spent time on trial with Preston North End before signing for Reading on an Academy scholarship on 1 October 2005. He spent three years playing for the youth and reserve teams. Prior to the 2007–08 season, he and five other youngsters were given professional contracts.
Ahead of the 2008–09 season, Gylfi was assigned the number 34 shirt for Reading. He was an unused substitute in the club's 2–1 away win at Dagenham & Redbridge in the first round of the League Cup on 12 August. Two weeks later, he made his debut in the next round against Luton Town, entering the match as a 59th-minute substitute for James Harper in a 5–1 win at the Madejski Stadium. He scored in Reading's penalty shoot-out loss away to Stoke City in the third round after entering as a substitute.
To gain first-team experience, Gylfi signed for Shrewsbury Town on a one-month loan spell on 16 October. Two days later, he scored on his league debut against AFC Bournemouth in a 4–1 win at the New Meadow. He made a total of six appearances during his time at Shrewsbury, scoring one goal. He returned to his parent club and featured in Reading's 2–0 loss to Cardiff City in the FA Cup third round on 3 January 2009. On 27 February, he joined Crewe Alexandra on an emergency loan move. Two days later, he made his debut against Brighton away, scoring in the 89th minute in a 4–0 win. On 24 March, his loan was extended until the end of the season. He scored two further goals for Crewe, against Milton Keynes Dons and Cheltenham Town respectively, but could not prevent the club's relegation to League Two.
Gylfi scored his first Reading goal against Burton Albion from 35 yards out in a League Cup first round tie at home on 11 August 2009. He scored his first league goal for Reading in a 3–2 defeat at Peterborough United on 19 September 2009. Gylfi was a major contributor in Reading's extraordinary 2009–10 FA Cup run which included wins over Premier League sides Liverpool, Burnley and West Bromwich Albion. On 13 January 2010, in the third round of the FA Cup against Liverpool, he scored a penalty in injury time to make the score 1–1 and force extra time. Reading went on to win the match 2–1. He scored the winning goal in the 87th minute against Burnley in the fourth round. In the fifth round, he scored the winning goal against West Brom for a 3–2 victory in extra time. In April 2010, Gylfi won the Championship Player of the Month Award for March, edging Peter Løvenkrands of Newcastle United, Graham Dorrans of West Brom and Adel Taarabt of Queens Park Rangers, scoring five goals in six matches that month. On 2 May, Gylfi scored against Preston North End in the final match of the season. Before the match, Gylfi was named as the 2009–10 Reading Player of the Season, surpassing Jimmy Kébé and Ryan Bertrand, who finished second and third respectively.
Gylfi finished the season with 20 goals in 44 matches in all competitions. His performances and his young age prompted several Premier League clubs to enquire over his availability, but he committed his future to Reading when he signed a three-year contract in May 2010.
Gylfi scored his first goal of the 2010–11 season in the first match of the season when he "skipped past two players before smashing in a 25-yard equaliser" against Scunthorpe United in a 2–1 home loss. He followed this on 28 August with a short-range chip in the 22nd minute away at Leicester City. The evening after the match, the Icelandic media reported Gylfi was to travel to Germany the following Monday to undergo a medical at 1899 Hoffenheim ahead of a transfer. On 31 August, he completed a transfer to 1899 Hoffenheim, with Reading reporting the fee received exceeded their previous club record sale of £6.5 million from the sale of Kevin Doyle.
Gylfi made his debut for 1899 Hoffenheim on 10 September 2010, coming on as a substitute with 13 minutes to go in a 2–0 win over Schalke 04. One week later, he scored his first goal for Hoffenheim in a 2–2 draw with 1. FC Kaiserslautern after coming on as a 77th-minute substitute. He scored with his first touch, a 20-yard free-kick that levelled the match. His second goal for the club was another free-kick, from 25 yards out against Mainz 05 in a 4–2 away defeat. He added another two goals to his tally in Hoffenheim's home win against Hannover 96, one of which was from the penalty spot. On 25 May 2011, Gylfi was voted as 1899 Hoffenheim's fans' Player of the Season, despite only starting 13 matches. He finished the season with ten goals and two assists.
During the first half of the 2011–12 season, Gylfi fell out of favour with the club's new manager, making just seven league appearances and was linked with a move away from the club.
On 1 January 2012, it was announced Gylfi would join Premier League club Swansea City on loan for the rest of the season. He made his Premier League debut for Swansea on 15 January, coming on at half-time and setting up the winning goal in a 3–2 win over Arsenal. On 4 February, Gylfi scored his first goal for the club in a 2–1 win against West Bromwich Albion. He also created Swansea's other goal for Danny Graham, taking his tally to three assists in four matches. On 3 March, he scored two goals in a 2–0 victory away at Wigan Athletic, his first from a free-kick. Two weeks later, he scored another brace in a 3–0 away win against Fulham. He scored his next goal at White Hart Lane in his team's 3–1 defeat by Tottenham Hotspur on 1 April.
As a result of his fine form, Gylfi was named the Premier League Player of the Month for March, the first Icelander to win the award. His next goal came in a 3–0 victory over Blackburn Rovers that put the club on 42 points for the season.
On 28 May, Swansea agreed a £6.8 million fee with 1899 Hoffenheim for the permanent transfer of Gylfi, subject to him passing a medical. However, following Swansea manager Brendan Rodgers' move to Liverpool, the deal collapsed, despite Huw Jenkins keeping hope in the deal alight. In 18 Premier League matches during his loan spell for Swansea, Gylfi scored seven goals and added four assists.
On 4 July 2012, Gylfi joined Tottenham Hotspur from 1899 Hoffenheim for a reported £8 million transfer fee. He was the first signing for newly appointed Spurs manager André Villas-Boas. On 18 July, he scored his first goal for the club in a friendly against Stevenage after coming on as a second-half substitute. On 26 September, he scored his first competitive goal for the club in a League Cup third round tie away against Carlisle United, closing the scoring in a 3–0 win.
Brian McDermott confirmed Reading made three unsuccessful bids to bring Gylfi back to his former club during the January 2013 transfer window, including a club record offer on deadline day thought by BBC Sport to be around £10 million. On 25 February, Gylfi scored his first Premier League goal for Tottenham, the second goal in a 3–2 win against West Ham United. In the following match, a 2–1 North London derby win against Arsenal, he provided the assist for Gareth Bale.
In the 2013–14 season, Gylfi scored a brace in 2–0 win against Norwich City on 14 September 2013. This win took Spurs up to second in the Premier League table. Gylfi's momentum in the Tottenham team continued on 28 September 2013, scoring in a 1–1 home draw against Chelsea.
In July 2014, Tottenham announced a deal had been reached with Swansea City for Gylfi to re-join his former club, with Swansea left-back Ben Davies joining Spurs. On the move, Gylfi said, "I really enjoyed my time here last time. I know the club, I know the manager, I know the players and I obviously know the fans and the city as well, so that wasn't that difficult for me." In the opening match of the 2014–15 season, he set up the opener and scored the winning goal as Swansea defeated Manchester United 2–1 at Old Trafford, making this the first time the Red Devils have lost their opening home game since 1972. Gylfi continued his good start to his Swansea return with another three assists in his next two matches. In a home match against Arsenal on 9 November 2014, Gylfi curled a free-kick over the wall and into the corner of the net from 25 yards to equalise in an eventual 2–1 win. Gylfi scored in a 4–1 away defeat against Liverpool at Anfield on 29 December.
On 17 January 2015, a wayward pass by Gylfi allowed Chelsea's Oscar to score after 50 seconds in an eventual 5–0 home defeat for Swansea. A week later, he scored and was sent off in added time at the end of a 3–1 defeat away to Blackburn Rovers in an FA Cup fourth round tie, with Swansea already having been down to ten men after the earlier dismissal of Kyle Bartley.
Amidst rumours of a £25 million move to Everton, Gylfi signed a new four-year contract with Swansea on 2 August 2016. He scored his first goal of the 2016–17 season on 11 September against Chelsea with a second-half penalty in a game which finished 2–2. He ended the season with 9 goals and 13 assists which helped the Swans avoid relegation. In summer 2017, Gylfi refused to participate in Swansea's pre-season tour of the United States, proclaiming he was not in right frame of mind to go with the club because of uncertainty over his future.
On 16 August 2017, Gylfi signed for fellow Premier league side Everton for a reported £40 million transfer fee (with £5 million in potential add-ons), a club-record deal. On 24 August 2017, he scored his first goal for Everton while making his full debut, with a shot from 50 yards in the UEFA Europa League play-off round second leg against Hajduk Split. On 26 November 2017, he scored his first Premier league goal in an Everton shirt against Southampton, but lost the match 1–4. On 2 December 2017, he went on the scoresheet again in a 2–0 defeat of Huddersfield Town. He ended off the 2017–18 season with 6 goals and 5 assists in 31 appearances.
Gylfi started the 2018–19 season with Everton with an assist to Michael Keane in a friendly match against Valencia, while losing the match 2–3. On 29 September 2018, he scored his first brace with the club in a 3–0 victory against Fulham. On 26 December 2018, he assisted and scored a penalty in a 5–1 victory against Burnley.
Gylfi scored his 100th goal in English football during Everton's 2nd round EFL cup tie against Salford City on 16 September 2020. On 20 February 2021, he scored a penalty in a 2–0 league win over Liverpool at Anfield, sealing Everton's first away win over their rivals since September 1999.
Gylfi took part in the 2008 U19 European Championship qualifying, scoring twice in qualification and twice in the elite round, but Iceland lost out to group winners Bulgaria by three points and missed out on the finals. In November 2007, Gylfi made his under-21 debut for Iceland, playing 30 minutes against Germany in a 3–0 loss. He made his first appearance in the 2009 European Under-21 Championship qualifying four days later, coming as an extra-time substitute, and played in the remaining matches. In Iceland's last match, he scored the opener against Slovakia, but Slovakia's Miroslav Stoch equalised to make it 1–1. Iceland failed to qualify for the play-offs but made a bright start to the 2011 campaign. He made his campaign debut in October against San Marino, scoring a brace within 16 minutes in a 6–0 thrashing.
In May 2010, Gylfi made his full Iceland debut in a convincing 4–0 win over Andorra and provided the assist for the second goal from a free-kick. Gylfi also helped Iceland's U21 side reach the 2011 UEFA European Under-21 Championship, playing in both play-off legs against Scotland as Iceland won 4–2 on aggregate. In the second leg, Gylfi scored two second-half goals to ensure Iceland won the match 2–1.
On 13 October 2014, Gylfi scored both goals (one of which was a penalty) as Iceland defeated the Netherlands in a UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying match. In the reverse fixture the following 3 September at the Amsterdam Arena, he converted another spot-kick for the only goal of the match, after Gregory van der Wiel fouled Birkir Bjarnason.
Gylfi was selected for UEFA Euro 2016. On 18 June, he scored Iceland's goal in their second group stage match against Hungary, a 1–1 draw at the Stade Vélodrome.
In May 2018, Gylfi was named in Iceland's 23-man squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. During the group stage match against Croatia, he scored a penalty in the 76th minute, but Iceland lost 2–1 and were eliminated at the group stage.
Gylfi scored a brace against Romania on 8 October 2020, earning Iceland a play-off place for the chance to fight for a place at the UEFA Euro 2020 finals.
In June 2019 he married Alexandra Ívarsdóttir (born 1989) who had been Miss Iceland in 2008. They had been dating from 2010.
On 16 July 2021, a 31 year old Premier League footballer was arrested "on suspicion of child sex offences" and was bailed out while investigations continued, stated the Greater Manchester Police without naming the player. On 19 July, Everton stated that it "suspended a first-team player pending a police investigation", but did not confirm if it was the same player arrested by the Greater Manchester Police. On 20 July 2021, Icelandic news website mbl.is reported that the player arrested for alleged child sex offences was Gylfi.
|Club||Season||League||National Cup||League Cup||Europe||Other||Total|
|Shrewsbury Town (loan)||2008–09||League Two||5||1||—||—||—||1[a]||0||6||1|
|Crewe Alexandra (loan)||2008–09||League One||15||3||—||—||—||—||15||3|
|Swansea City (loan)||2011–12||Premier League||18||7||1||0||0||0||—||—||19||7|
|Tottenham Hotspur||2012–13||Premier League||33||3||2||0||2||1||11[b]||3||—||48||7|
|Swansea City||2014–15||Premier League||32||7||1||1||2||1||—||—||35||9|
|1||7 October 2011||Estádio do Dragão, Porto, Portugal||6||Portugal||3–5||3–5||UEFA Euro 2012 qualification|
|2||12 October 2012||Qemal Stafa Stadium, Tirana, Albania||13||Albania||2–1||2–1||2014 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|3||22 March 2013||Stožice Stadium, Ljubljana, Slovenia||16||Slovenia||1–1||2–1||2014 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|5||11 October 2013||Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland||19||Cyprus||2–0||2–0||2014 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|6||9 September 2014||Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland||25||Turkey||2–0||3–0||UEFA Euro 2016 qualification|
|7||10 October 2014||Skonto Stadium, Riga, Latvia||26||Latvia||1–0||3–0||UEFA Euro 2016 qualification|
|8||13 October 2014||Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland||27||Netherlands||1–0||2–0||UEFA Euro 2016 qualification|
|10||3 September 2015||Amsterdam Arena, Amsterdam, Netherlands||31||Netherlands||1–0||1–0||UEFA Euro 2016 qualification|
|11||10 October 2015||Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland||33||Latvia||2–0||2–2||UEFA Euro 2016 qualification|
|12||13 November 2015||National Stadium, Warsaw, Poland||35||Poland||1–0||2–4||Friendly|
|13||1 June 2016||Ullevaal Stadion, Oslo, Norway||38||Norway||2–3||2–3||Friendly|
|14||18 June 2016||Stade Vélodrome, Marseille, France||41||Hungary||1–0||1–1||UEFA Euro 2016|
|15||24 March 2017||Loro Boriçi Stadium, Shkodër, Albania||49||Kosovo||2–0||2–1||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|16||5 September 2017||Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland||52||Ukraine||1–0||2–0||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|18||9 October 2017||Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland||54||Kosovo||1–0||2–0||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|19||2 June 2018||Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland||56||Norway||2–1||2–3||Friendly|
|20||26 June 2018||Rostov Arena, Rostov-on-Don, Russia||60||Croatia||1–1||1–2||2018 FIFA World Cup|
|21||10 September 2019||Elbasan Arena, Elbasan, Albania||70||Albania||1–1||2–4||UEFA Euro 2020 qualification|
|22||17 November 2019||Zimbru Stadium, Chișinău, Moldova||74||Moldova||2–1||2–1||UEFA Euro 2020 qualification|
|23||8 October 2020||Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland||75||Romania||1–0||2–1||UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying playoffs|
|25||12 November 2020||Puskás Aréna, Budapest, Hungary||77||Hungary||1–0||1–2||UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying playoffs|
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