Paco Gento

On the 18th of January 2022 Paco Gento, a Real legend and honorary president of Real Madrid, passed away. He played 18 seasons at Real Madrid and went on to become a legend in world football. He is the only player ever to win six European Cups.

Francisco Gento López has passed away at the age of 88. An instrumental figure in the Real Madrid club legend, playing for our club from 1953 to 1971. During eighteen years he won an unprecedented number of trophies. He won 6 European Cups, making him a truly unique player in the history of football. He also won 12 Leagues, 1 Intercontinental, 2 Latin Cups, 2 Spanish Cups and 1 Mini World Cup. He was named honorary president of the club in 2016 due to his contribution to Real Madrid.

With a superb physique and incredible speed, Gento was the best left winger in the world. As well as his spectacular qualities as a player, he was the bridge between two legendary generations at Real Madrid: the first five European Cups and the "yeyé" team.

Gento was born on 21 October 1933 in Guarnizo (Cantabria) and arrived at Real Madrid in the 1953/54 season from Racing Santander, the same season that Di Stéfano joined our team and together they transformed Real Madrid into the best club in the world.

They won the league in their first season and kicked off a golden era for madridismo. The best players in the world wore our jersey and the forward line of Kopa, Rial, Di Stéfano, Puskas and Gento is considered the greatest ever.

Since the creation of the European Cup in 1955, Gento is the only player to have won the trophy six times. He was first part of the magnificent team that won five in a row from 1956 to 1960 and then captained Real Madrid yeyé in 1966.

Gento was in the starting line-up for Real Madrid's first six European Cup finals, scoring in two of them. In the second, he scored the second goal in the 2-0 win against Fiorentina in a final played at the Santiago Bernabéu. He proved even more instrumental in the third, when his extra-time goal settled a tough encounter against Milan.

He played in two more European Cup finals in his career, taking his total to eight, a competition record shared with Paolo Maldini. They came in 1962 against Benfica and 1964 against Inter Milan. He played 88 European Cup matches, scoring 31 times.

Throughout his long career, he exemplified dedication and devotion to Real Madrid and became the first player in the history of the club to play 600 official matches, scoring 182 goals. His importance in our history meant that he succeeded Alfredo Di Stéfano as honorary president of the club. In 1963, Gento was recognised by world football when he was part of the FIFA team that played against England in the centenary of the English Football Association. His countless sporting achievements also led to him being decorated with the Grand Cross of the Royal Order of Sporting Merit, as well as other honours.

Gento played 43 times for the Spanish national team and was involved in two World Cups, in 1962 and 1966. Following his playing career, he coached Real Madrid's youth teams and also coached Castellón, Palencia and Granada in the Second Division.

Paco Gento