Ferenc Puskás

Ferenc Puskás was a Hungarian footballer and manager, widely regarded as one of the greatest players of all time. He is the son of former footballer Ferenc Puskás Senior. A prolific forward, he scored 84 goals in 85 international matches for Hungary, played 4 international matches for Spain and scored 514 goals in 529 matches in the Hungarian and Spanish leagues. He became an Olympic champion in 1952 and led his nation to the final of the 1954 World Cup where he was named the tournament’s best player. He won three European Cups (1959, 1960, 1966), 10 national championships (5 Hungarian and 5 Spanish Primera División) and 8 top individual scoring honors. In 1995, he was recognized as the top scorer of the 20th century by the IFFHS.

Puskás started his career in Hungary playing for Kispest and Budapest Honvéd. He was the top scorer in the Hungarian League on four occasions, and in 1948, he was the top goal scorer in Europe. During the 1950s, he was both a prominent member and captain of the Hungarian national team, known as the Mighty Magyars. In 1958, two years after the Hungarian Revolution, he emigrated to Spain where he played for Real Madrid. While playing with Real Madrid, Puskás won four Pichichis and scored seven goals in two European Champions Cup finals.

After retiring as a player, he became a coach. The highlight of his coaching career came in 1971 when he guided Panathinaikos to the European Cup final, where they lost 2–0 to AFC Ajax. In 1993, he returned to Hungary and took temporary charge of the Hungarian national team. In 1998, he became one of the first ever FIFA/SOS Charity ambassadors. In 2002, the Népstadion in Budapest was renamed the Puskás Ferenc Stadion in his honor. He was also declared the best Hungarian player of the last 50 years by the Hungarian Football Federation in the UEFA Jubilee Awards in November 2003. In October 2009, FIFA announced the introduction of the FIFA Puskás Award, awarded to the player who has scored the “most beautiful goal” over the past year. He was also listed in Pelé’s FIFA 100.

Contents

  • 1Career in Hungary
    • 1.1Early years
    • 1.2Mighty Magyars
    • 1.3Ferenc Puskás’ statistics in the 1952 Helsinki Olympics
    • 1.4Ferenc Puskás’ statistics at the 1954 World Cup in Switzerland
    • 1.5Honvéd World Tour
  • 2Spanish career
    • 2.1Real Madrid
    • 2.2Spanish national appearances
    • 2.3Appearance for South Liverpool
  • 3Management career
  • 4Later life and death
  • 5Legacy
  • 6Honours
    • 6.1Player
    • 6.2Manager
  • 7Career statistics
    • 7.1Club
    • 7.2International
    • 7.3International appearances for Spain
  • 8See also
  • 9Notes
  • 10References
  • 11External links

Career in Hungary

Early years

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c0/Ferenc_Puskas_and_Ger_Lagendijk_1968.jpg/220px-Ferenc_Puskas_and_Ger_Lagendijk_1968.jpg

 

Ferenc Puskás with Ger Lagendijk

Ferenc Purczeld was born on 2 April 1927 to a German (Danube Swabian) family in Budapest and brought up in Kispest, then a suburb, today part of the city. His mother, Margit Biró (1904–1976), was a seamstress. He began his career as a junior with Kispest AC, where his father, who had previously played for the club, was a coach. He had grandchildren, who were the children of his brothers son[clarification needed]; the two sons of his brother are Zoltan and Istvan, the first one have 3 children; Ilonka, Camila and Andrés, and the second one have two.

He changed his name to Puskás. He initially used the pseudonym “Miklós Kovács” to help circumvent the minimum age rules before officially signing at the age of 12. Among his early teammates was his childhood friend and future international teammate József Bozsik. He made his first senior appearance for Kispest in November 1943 in a match against Nagyváradi AC. It was here where he got the nickname “Öcsi” or “Buddy”.

Kispest was taken over by the Hungarian Ministry of Defence in 1949, becoming the Hungarian Army team and changing its name to Budapest Honvéd. As a result, football players were given military ranks. Puskás eventually became a major (Hungarian: Őrnagy), which led to the nickname “The Galloping Major”. As the army club, Honvéd used conscription to acquire the best Hungarian players, leading to the recruitment of Zoltán Czibor and Sándor Kocsis. During his career at Budapest Honvéd, Puskás helped the club win five Hungarian League titles. He also finished as top goal scorer in the league in 1947–48, 1949–50, 1950 and 1953, scoring 50, 31, 25 and 27 goals, respectively. In 1948, he was the top goal scorer in Europe.

Mighty Magyars

Main article: Golden Team

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b1/Golden_Team_1953.jpg/300px-Golden_Team_1953.jpg

 

The Golden Team in 1953
front row: Mihály Lantos, Ferenc Puskás, Gyula Grosics
back row: Gyula Lóránt, Jenő Buzánszky, Nándor Hidegkuti, Sándor Kocsis, József Zakariás, Zoltán Czibor, József Bozsik, László Budai

Puskás made his debut for Hungary team on 20 August 1945 and scored in a 5–2 win over Austria. He went on to play 85 games and scored 84 times for Hungary. His international goal record included two hat tricks against Austria, one against Luxembourg and four goals in a 12–0 win over Albania. Together with Zoltán Czibor, Sándor Kocsis, József Bozsik, and Nándor Hidegkuti, he formed the nucleus of the Golden Team that was to remain unbeaten for 32 consecutive games. During this run, they became Olympic Champions in 1952, beating Yugoslavia 2–0 in the final in Helsinki. Puskás scored four times at the Olympic tournament, including the opening goal in the final. They also defeated England twice, first with a 6–3 win at Wembley Stadium., and then 7–1 in Budapest. Puskás scored two goals in each game against England. In 1953, they also became Central European Champions. Hungary won the championship after finishing top of the table with 11 points. Puskás finished the tournament as top scorer with 10 goals and scored twice as Hungary claimed the trophy with a 3–0 win over Italy at the Stadio Olimpico in 1953.

Puskás scored three goals in the two first-round matches Hungary played at the 1954 FIFA World Cup. They defeated South Korea 9–0 and then West Germany 8–3. In the latter game, he suffered a hairline fracture of the ankle after a tackle by Werner Liebrich, and did not return until the final.

Puskás played the entire 1954 World Cup final against West Germany with a hairline fracture. Despite this, he scored his fourth goal of the tournament to put Hungary ahead after six minutes, and with Czibor adding another goal two minutes later, it seemed that the pre-tournament favorites would take the title. However, the West Germans pulled back two goals before half time, with six minutes left the West Germans scored the winner. Two minutes from the end of the match, Puskás appeared to score an equalizer but the goal was disallowed due to an offside call.

Ferenc Puskás’ statistics in the 1952 Helsinki Olympics

The scores contain links to the article on football in the Helsinki Olympics and the round in question.

Game no.

Round

Date

Opponent

Puskás’ playing time

Score

Puskás’ goals

Score

Times

Venue

Report

1

Prel. R.

15 July 1952

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/ac/Flag_of_Romania_%281952-1965%29.svg/23px-Flag_of_Romania_%281952-1965%29.svg.png  Romania

90 min.

2–1 (1–0)

0

Kupittaa, Turku

 

2

1st R

21 July 1952

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/0/03/Flag_of_Italy.svg/23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png  Italy

90 min.

3–0 (2–0)

0

Pallokenttä, Helsinki

 

3

QF

24 July 1952

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b4/Flag_of_Turkey.svg/23px-Flag_of_Turkey.svg.png  Turkey

90 min

7–1 (2–0)

2

4–0
6–1

Goal  54′
Goal  72′

Urheilukeskus, Kotka

 

4

SF

28 July 1952

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/4/4c/Flag_of_Sweden.svg/23px-Flag_of_Sweden.svg.png  Sweden

90 min

6–0 (3–0)

1

1–0

Goal  1′

Helsinki Olympic Stadium

 

5

Final

2 August 1952

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/61/Flag_of_Yugoslavia_%281946-1992%29.svg/23px-Flag_of_Yugoslavia_%281946-1992%29.svg.png  Yugoslavia

90 min

2–0 (0–0)

1

1–0

Goal  70′

Helsinki Olympic Stadium

 

Ferenc Puskás’ statistics at the 1954 World Cup in Switzerland

The scores contain links to the article on 1954 FIFA World Cup and the round in question. When there is a special article on the match in question, the link is in the column for round.

Game no.

Round

Date

Opponent

Puskás’ playing time

Score

Puskás’ goals

Score

Times

Venue

Report

1

Group 2

17 June 1954

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/09/Flag_of_South_Korea.svg/23px-Flag_of_South_Korea.svg.png  South Korea

90 min.

9–0 (4–0)

2

1–0
9–0

Goal  12′
Goal  89′

Hardturm Stadium, Zürich

 

2

Group 2

20 June 1954

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/b/ba/Flag_of_Germany.svg/23px-Flag_of_Germany.svg.png  West Germany

90 min

8–3 (3–1)

1

2–0

Goal  17′

St. Jakob Stadium, Basel

 

QF

27 June 1954

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/92/Flag_of_Brazil_%281889%E2%80%931960%29.svg/22px-Flag_of_Brazil_%281889%E2%80%931960%29.svg.png  Brazil

Did not play

4–2 (2–1)

0

Wankdorf Stadium, Bern

 

SF

30 June 1954

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/fe/Flag_of_Uruguay.svg/23px-Flag_of_Uruguay.svg.png  Uruguay

Did not play

4–2 (a.e.t.)
(2–2, 1–0)

0

Stade Olympique de la Pontaise, Lausanne

 

3

Final

4 July 1954

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/b/ba/Flag_of_Germany.svg/23px-Flag_of_Germany.svg.png  West Germany

90 min

2–3 (2–2)

1

1–0

Goal  6′

Wankdorf Stadium, Bern

 

Honvéd World Tour

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/e/e1/Puskas_Hidegkuti_1954.png/260px-Puskas_Hidegkuti_1954.png

 

Nándor Hidegkuti and Ferenc Puskás in 1954

Budapest Honvéd entered the European Cup in 1956 and were drawn against Atlético Bilbao in the first round. Honvéd lost the away leg 2–3, but before the home leg could be played, the Hungarian Revolution erupted in Budapest. The players decided against going back to Hungary and arranged for the return with Atlético to be played at Heysel Stadium in Brussels, Belgium. Puskás scored in the subsequent 3–3 draw but Honvéd were eliminated 6–5 on aggregate, and the Hungarian players were left in limbo. They summoned[clarification needed] their families from Budapest, and despite opposition from FIFA and the Hungarian football authorities, they organised a fundraising tour of Italy, Portugal, Spain, and Brazil. After returning to Europe, the players parted ways. Some, including Bozsik, returned to Hungary while others, including Czibor, Kocsis and Puskás, found new clubs in Western Europe.

Spanish career

Real Madrid

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/0d/DiStefanoPuskas.jpg/160px-DiStefanoPuskas.jpg

 

Ferenc Puskás with Alfredo Di Stéfano

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/af/Ferenc_Puskas_player_licence.jpg/220px-Ferenc_Puskas_player_licence.jpg

 

Puskás’s player licence, showing his mother’s maiden name Biró as a second surname in accordance with Spanish naming customs

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c4/Puskasreal.jpg/160px-Puskasreal.jpg

 

Puskás at Real Madrid

After refusing to return to Hungary, Puskás initially played a few unofficial games for RCD Espanyol[citation needed]. At the same time, both AC Milan and Juventus attempted to sign him, but then he received a two-year ban from UEFA (for refusing to return to Budapest) which prevented him from playing in Europe. He moved to Austria and then Italy. After his ban, Puskás tried to play in Italy but was not able to find a top-flight club willing to sign him, as Italian managers were concerned about his age and weight. He was considered by Manchester United to strengthen a squad ravaged by the Munich Air Disaster in 1958, but because of FA rules regarding foreigners and Puskás’ not knowing the English language, stand-in manager Jimmy Murphy could not fulfill his wish of signing the Hungarian. However, a few months later, Puskás joined Real Madrid and at the age of 31 embarked on the second phase of his career.

During his first La Liga season, Puskás scored four hat-tricks, including one in his second game, against Sporting de Gijón on 21 September 1958. In the game against UD Las Palmas on 4 January 1959, Puskás and Alfredo di Stéfano scored hat-tricks in a 10–1 win. During the 1960–61 season, Puskás scored four times in a game against Elche CF and the following season, he scored five goals against the same team. Puskás scored two hat-tricks against FC Barcelona in 1963, one at the Bernabéu and one at the Camp Nou. During eight seasons with Real, Puskás played 180 La Liga games and scored 156 goals. He scored 20 or more goals in each of his first six seasons in the Spanish league, and won the Pichichi four times: in 1960, 1961, 1963, and 1964, scoring 25, 28, 26 and 21 goals, respectively. He helped Real win La Liga five times in a row between 1961 and 1965 and the Copa del Generalísimo in 1962. He scored both goals in the 2–1 victory over Sevilla FC in the Copa final.

Puskás also played a further 39 games for Real in the European Cup, scoring 35 goals. He helped Real reach the final of the 1959 European Cup, scoring in the first leg and in the decisive replay of the semi-final against Atlético Madrid, but missed the final due to injury. In the following season he began Real’s 1960 European Cup campaign with a hat-trick against Jeunesse Esch and in the semi-final against FC Barcelona, he once again guided Real into the final with three goals over two legs. In the final itself, Real beat Eintracht Frankfurt 7–3 with Puskás scoring four goals and di Stéfano scoring three. In subsequent European campaigns, he would score a further three hat-tricks, including one in the 1962 final against Benfica, which Real lost 5–3. In 1965, he scored five goals over two games against Feyenoord as he helped Real Madrid to the 1966 European Cup final – Real won the game against Partizan Belgrade, but Puskás did not play in the final.

Spanish national appearances

In 1962, Puskás took Spanish nationality, and subsequently played four times for Spain. Three of these games were at the 1962 World Cup.

Appearance for South Liverpool

In 1967, at the age of 40, he appeared in a fundraising friendly game for South Liverpool, the English non-League side, in front of a 10,000-strong sell-out crowd at the club’s Holly Park stadium.

Management career

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/4a/Pusk%C3%A1s_statue_in_%C3%93buda-1.jpg/240px-Pusk%C3%A1s_statue_in_%C3%93buda-1.jpg

 

Statue of Ferenc Puskás in Budapest inspired by a photograph taken in Madrid in which the legendary player was teaching an ad hoc course in keepie uppie to street children

After retiring as a player, Puskás became a coach and managed teams in Europe, North America, South America, Africa, Asia, and Australia.

In 1971, he guided Panathinaikos of Greece to the European Cup final, the only time a Greek club has reached a European final to date. In the qualifying rounds they beat Everton in the quarter-finals on away goals, then defeated Red Star Belgrade in the semi’s. In the final Panathinaikos lost 2–0 to Johan Cruyff’s Ajax. During his four-year tenure at Panathinaikos, Puskás helped the team secure one Greek Championship in 1972. However, with the notable exception of his spell at Panathinaikos, Puskás failed to transfer his success as a player to his coaching career.

Despite his wide travels, his only other success came with South Melbourne Hellas, with whom he won the National Soccer League title in 1991.

When Wolverhampton Wanderers opened their new stadium Molineux in 1993, Puskás visited the newly opened stadium as an honorary guest to watch the friendly match between Wolves and Budapest Honvéd, which was a match to christen the new opening of the stadium. This was because in the 1950s, Wolves played a game against Honvéd in a memorable friendly match, which Puskás played in. Wolves won the 1954 match 3–2, with the 1993 match ending in a 1-1 draw.

In 1993, he took charge of the Hungarian national football team for four games, including a 4–2 friendly victory against the Republic of Ireland in Dublin, where Hungary came from two goals down to eventually beat their opponents.

Later life and death

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/1a/Pusk%C3%A1s_Ferenc_s%C3%ADrja.jpg/280px-Pusk%C3%A1s_Ferenc_s%C3%ADrja.jpg

 

Puskás’s tomb at the St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

Puskás was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2000. He was admitted to a Budapest hospital in September 2006 and died on 17 November 2006 of pneumonia. He was 79 years old and was survived by his wife of 57 years, Erzsébet, and their daughter, Anikó. In a state funeral, his coffin was moved from Puskás Ferenc Stadion to Heroes’ Square for a military salute. He was buried under the dome of the St Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest on 9 December 2006.

Legacy

A street named Újtemető utca near Stadium Bozsik in the Hungarian capital of Budapest (specifically the district of Kispest) was renamed after Puskás precisely one year after the footballer’s death.

Puskás Ferenc Stadion (1953), the new Puskás Ferenc Stadion, its metro station, Puskás Akadémia FC, Puskás Cup and the FIFA Puskás Award all bear his name.

Honours

 

Puskás with Feyenoord’s Piet Kruiver after losing to Real Madrid 5–0

Player

Budapest Honvéd

  • Hungarian League: 1949–50, 1950, 1952, 1954, 1955

Real Madrid

  • Spanish League: 1960–61, 1961–62, 1962–63, 1963–64, 1964–65
  • Spanish Cup: 1961–62
  • European Cup: 1958–59, 1959–60, 1965–66
  • Intercontinental Cup: 1960

Hungary

  • Balkan Cup Champions: 1947
  • Olympic Champions: 1952
  • Central European Champions: 1953
  • FIFA World Cup Runners-up: 1954

Individual

  • Ballon d’Or Silver Award: 1960
  • Hungarian Football Federation Player of the Year: 1950
  • Central European International Cup top scorer: 1954
  • Hungarian top scorer: 1947–48, 1949–50, 1950, 1953
  • Spanish League top scorer (Pichichi Trophy): 1959–60, 1960–61, 1962–63, 1963–64
  • European Cup top scorer: 1959–60, 1953–64
  • Golden Boot of the World: 1948
  • World Soccer Player of the Year: 1953
  • World Soccer World XI: 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963
  • 1954 FIFA World Cup: Golden Ball
  • 1954 FIFA World Cup: All-Star Team
  • European Player of the 20th century – L’Equipe
  • Hungarian Player of the 20th century – IFFHS
  • Football’s Top Scorer of the 20th century – IFFHS
  • Member of the FIFA 100
  • UEFA Golden Player: Greatest Hungarian Footballer of the last 50 Years
  • Inaugural Inductee into Goal Hall of Fame 2014
  • Top 10 Greatest Players of the 20th century (#7) – World Soccer Magazine
  • Top 10 World’s Best Players of the 20th century (#6) – IFFHS
  • Top 10 Europe’s Best Players of the 20th century (#4) – IFFHS
  • Golden Foot: 2006 (as a legend)
  • IFFHS Legends

Manager

Panathinaikos

  • Superleague Greece: 1969–70, 1971–72
  • European Cup Runner-up: 1970–71

Sol de América

  • Paraguayan Primera División: 1986

South Melbourne Hellas

  • National Soccer League: 1990–91
  • NSL Cup: 1989–90
  • Dockerty Cup: 1989, 1991

Career statistics

Club

Source:

Performance

Liga

Copa

Continental

Total

Season

Club

League

Matches

Goals

Matches

Goals

Matches

Goals

Matches

Goals

Hungary

Nemzeti Bajnokság I

Magyar Kupa

Europe

Total

1943–44

Kispest

Nemzeti Bajnokság I

18

7

18

7

1944-45

2

1

2

1

1944

11

6

11

6

1945

20

10

20

10

1945–46

34

36

34

36

1946–47

29

32

29

32

1947–48

31

50

31

50

1948–49

28

46

28

46

1949–50

Budapesti
Honvéd SE

Nemzeti Bajnokság I

30

31

30

31

1950

15

25

15

25

1951

21

21

2

1

23

23

1952

26

22

26

22

1953

26

27

3

12

29

39

1954

20

21

20

21

1955

26

18

6

4

4

3

36

25

1956

13

5

2

1

15

6

Spain

La Liga

Copa del Generalísimo

European Cup

Total

1958–59

Real Madrid

La Liga

24

21

5

2

5

2

34

25

1959–60

24

25

5

10

7

12

36

47

1960–61

28

28

9

14

4

2

41

44

1961–62

23

20

8

13

9

7

40

40

1962–63

30

26

7

5

2

0

39

31

1963–64

25

21

0

0

8

7

33

28

1964–65

18

11

4

4

3

2

25

17

1965–66

8

4

3

1

3

5

14

10

Country

Hungary

350

358

11

17

6

4

367

380

Spain

180

156

41

49

41

37

262

242

Total

530

514

52

66

47

41

629

622

International

Main article: List of international goals scored by Ferenc Puskás

Hungary national team

Year

Apps

Goals

1945

2

3

1946

3

3

1947

5

5

1948

6

7

1949

8

11

1950

6

12

1951

3

4

1952

12

10

1953

7

6

1954

11

8

1955

12

10

1956

9

4

Total

85

84

Spain national team

Year

Apps

Goals

1961

1

0

1962

3

0

Total

4

0

International appearances for Spain

Date

Venue

Opponent

Score

Competition

12 November 1961

Casablanca, Casablanca, Morocco

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/2/2c/Flag_of_Morocco.svg/23px-Flag_of_Morocco.svg.png  Morocco

1–0

1962 FIFA World Cup qualification

31 May 1962

Estadio Sausalito, Viña del Mar, Chile

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/cb/Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic.svg/23px-Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic.svg.png  Czechoslovakia

0–1

1962 FIFA World Cup

3 June 1962

Estadio Sausalito, Viña del Mar, Chile

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/fc/Flag_of_Mexico.svg/23px-Flag_of_Mexico.svg.png  Mexico

1–0

1962 FIFA World Cup

6 June 1962

Estadio Sausalito, Viña del Mar, Chile

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/0/05/Flag_of_Brazil.svg/22px-Flag_of_Brazil.svg.png  Brazil

1–2

1962 FIFA World Cup

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