César Rodríguez Álvarez

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César
CesarRodriguez.jpg
Personal information
Full name César Rodríguez Álvarez
Date of birth (1920-06-29)29 June 1920
Place of birth León, Spain
Date of death 1 March 1995(1995-03-01) (aged 74)
Place of death Barcelona, Spain
Playing position Forward
Youth career
SEU León
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1939–1955 Barcelona 287 (192)
1940–1942 Granada (loan) 24 (23)
1955–1956 Cultural Leonesa 15 (3)
1956–1957 Perpignan
1957–1960 Elche 80 (42)
National team
1943–1954 Catalan XI 10 (5)
1945–1952 Spain 12 (6)
Teams managed
1959–1960 Elche
1960–1963 Zaragoza
1963–1964 Barcelona
1965–1966 Mallorca
1966–1967 Celta
1967 Betis
1968–1969 Zaragoza
1969–1970 Hércules
1971 Hércules (caretaker)
1975–1976 San Andrés
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

César Rodríguez Álvarez (29 June 1920 – 1 March 1995), known as just César, was a Spanish football forward and manager.

During his career, which spanned more than two decades, he played mainly for FC Barcelona, appearing in 351 official games for the club and scoring 232 goals (previously counted by the club as 235), making him the highest goalscorer in the club's history for several decades.[1] He won five La Liga championships with the team, in a total of 13 major trophies, and was renowned for his ability to score from corners.[2]

After retiring César managed both Zaragoza and Barcelona, amongst several other professional teams. He represented Spain at the 1950 World Cup.

Club career[edit]

Barcelona[edit]

Rodríguez was born in León, Castile and León, and joined FC Barcelona in 1939. However, military service saw him being relocated to Granada and Granada CF the following year, and he played two seasons on loan in Andalusia, helping the team promote to La Liga for the first time ever, then adding 23 goals in only 24 games in the following season for a final 10th position – out of 14 clubs, good enough for league status preservation; this included six in a 7–3 home win against CD Castellón, on 22 March 1942.[3]

In 1942 César returned to Barcelona, winning his first national championship in 1944–45, to which conquest he contributed with 15 goals in 24 matches. During his 13-year stint in Catalonia he scored in double digits in 11 seasons, surpassing the 20-goal mark in three. His early teammates included, among others, Antoni Ramallets, Juan Velasco, Josep Escolà, Joan Segarra, Estanislau Basora, José Gonzalvo and Mariano Gonzalvo; in 1948 he won his first and only Pichichi Trophy (28 goals) and, three years later, he scored twice in the 3–0 win over Real Sociedad in the Copa del Generalísimo final.[3]

Subsequently, Rodríguez was part of a legendary Barcelona forward line alongside Basora, László Kubala, Eduardo Manchón and Moreno that helped the club win five trophies during the 1951–52 season. He scored again in the domestic cup final, a 4–2 extra time win against Valencia CF, and netted the only goal in the Latin Cup triumph over OGC Nice of France.

Later years / Management[edit]

After leaving Barcelona at the age of 35, César had spells at Cultural y Deportiva Leonesa – his only top flight relegation, in 1956 – and Perpignan F.C. in France, returning to his country with Elche CF, and helping the Valencian move from Tercera División to the top level in only two years, acting as the side's player-coach in his last season. He scored 33 in only 25 games in the third division campaign.[3]

Rodríguez retired from football in 1960 aged 40, with Spanish top division totals of 353 games and 226 goals. In the competition's history, only three players – Zarra, Hugo Sánchez and Alfredo Di Stéfano – scored more goals.[3]

Afterwards he coached nine seasons in the main category, mainly with Real Zaragoza, guiding the Aragonese to the third position in 1961, the fourth in 1962 and the fifth in 1963, also reaching the domestic cup final in the latter campaign, losing against his former team Barcelona.

In the 1963 summer, César succeeded former teammate Josep Gonzalvo at the helm of Barça, being sacked only five games into the 1964–65 campaign. He suffered consecutive top flight relegations with RCD Mallorca and Real Betis, and his last professional job was with Zaragoza in 1968–69, leading the team to the 13th position, the first above the relegation zone.[3] He died at the age of 74 in Barcelona, and his scoring record stood until 20 March 2012 (57 years), when Lionel Messi netted a hat-trick against Granada.[2]

International career[edit]

César played 12 times for Spain during seven years, scoring six goals. He netted on his debut in a 2–2 draw with Portugal on 11 March 1945, and was included in the squad for 1950 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, being an unused member.[3]

Rodríguez also appeared for the Catalan XI during more than one decade. On 19 October 1947, at the Estadi de Sarrià, he scored twice in a 3–1 win over the Spanish national side.

International goals[edit]

# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 11 March 1945 Lisbon, Portugal  Portugal 2–2 Draw Friendly
2 6 May 1945 A Coruña, Spain  Portugal 4–2 Win Friendly
3 21 March 1948 Madrid, Spain  Portugal 2–0 Win Friendly
4 18 February 1951 Madrid, Spain   Switzerland 6–3 Win Friendly
5 1 June 1952 Madrid, Spain  Republic of Ireland 6–0 Win Friendly
6 28 December 1952 Madrid, Spain  West Germany 2–2 Draw Friendly

Honours[edit]

Player[edit]

Barcelona
Granada
Elche

Manager[edit]

Zaragoza
Hércules

Individual[edit]

Club statistics[edit]

Club Season League Cup Europe[4] Other[5] Totals
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Granada 1941–42 24 23 ? ? ? ?
Totals 24 23 ? ? ? ?
Barcelona 1942–43 23 13 8 3 31 16
1943–44 26 12 4 1 30 13
1944–45 24 15 4 6 28 21
1945–46 26 11 2 0 1 1 29 13
1946–47 25 10 4 3 29 13
1947–48 19 19 2 0 21 18
1948–49 24 27 4 2 3 2 31 31
1949–50 23 18 2 2 0 0 25 20
1950–51 27 29 7 4 34 33
1951–52 24 23 7 5 3 1 34 29
1952–53 27 13 5 4 32 17
1953–54 15 2 7 6 22 8
1954–55 4 0 1 0 5 0
Totals 287 192 57 36 7 4 351 232
Cultural Leonesa 1955–56 15 3 ? ? ? ?
Totals 15 3 ? ? ? ?
Elche 1959–60 27 5 ? ? ? ?
Totals 27 5 ? ? ? ?
Career totals 353 223 ? ? 7 4 ? ?

Personal[edit]

Rodríguez's older brother, Ricardo (aka Calo), was also a footballer. A defender, he played eight seasons in the top division in representation of three teams – including Barcelona, five years – appearing in 71 league games.[3][6]

He scored the first goal ever in the first division for both Granada and Leonesa.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Spain – All-Time Topscorers; at RSSSF
  2. ^ a b Lionel Messi breaks Barcelona goalscoring record; BBC Sport, 20 March 2012
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h César Rodríguez Alvárez, CÉSAR; Franjiverdes, 28 April 2009 (Spanish)
  4. ^ Counts for appearances and goals at the UEFA Champions League, Inter-Cities Fairs Cup and UEFA Cup Winners' Cup.
  5. ^ Counts for appearances and goals at the Copa Eva Duarte and Latin Cup.
  6. ^ Calo at BDFutbol

External links[edit]