Born: July 15, 1979 in Basel, Switzerland
Nickname: Alex the Great
Clubs played for: Frei started his pro career with his hometown club FC Basel in 1997, before moving on to fellow Swiss outfits FC Thun, FC Lucerne, and Servette FC. His big break came following a 2003 transfer to Rennes and it was in France that he shot to fame, scoring bags of goals and finishing as the top scorer in Ligue Un during the 2005 campaign. After four seasons in France, he moved to Germany via a transfer to Borussia Dortmund in 2006 (scoring 16 goals in his debut season), before ending up back in Basel this past summer
International career: Frei made his national team debut in 2001 and went on to become Switzerland's all-time leading goal scorer with 40 goals. He competed in the Euro 2004 and 2008 tournaments, as well as the 2006 World Cup. Despite tearing ligaments in his knee during the opening match of Euro 2008, Frei sat on the bench for the remainder of the competition, lending moral support to his Swiss teammates
Why is he so special? Although not fast or physically strong, Frei is an energetic, athletic striker who boasts an accurate shot, makes dangerous runs off the ball, and is equally adept at scoring with either foot.
His most famous moment: Scoring a pair of goals in a 3-0 exhibition win over Liechtenstein on May 30, 2008, to become the Swiss national's all-time leading scorer
He said it: "It was a great moment. It's nice that the record has fallen ... I have Swiss football history, but now it's time to look forward." (On becoming Switzerland's all-time goal scorer)
What they're saying about him: "He is a great fighter with a big heart." - Kobi Kuhn, former coach of Swiss national team
Here's an interesting fact: Frei is a second-cousin of current Toronto FC goalkeeper Stefan Frei.