Carlos Ruiz Herrero
Carlos in 1977
|Full name||Carlos Ruiz Herrero|
|Date of birth||7 June 1948|
|Place of birth||Bilbao, Spain|
|Height||1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
Born in Bilbao, Biscay, the third of ten sons in a large family, Carlos played for eleven seasons with Athletic Bilbao, plus one with their the reserves, having been signed in 1969 from Basque neighbours CD Getxo. On 12 September 1970 he made his debut for the first team, playing the dying minutes of the 1–1 home draw against FC Barcelona.
In the following years Carlos continued to be used regularly by the club, although he was not always an undisputed starter. In the 1974–75 season, however, he scored a career-best 19 goals in 32 games (winning the Pichichi Trophy in the process), for a tenth place in La Liga; on 18 May 1977 he netted the goal to put Athletic 2–1 up at home against Juventus FC in the campaign's final of the UEFA Cup – his last of five during the side's continental run – but the Italians won the trophy on the away goals rule.
Carlos still enjoyed two seasons in double digits until he left Athletic (including 1977–78, with 16 goals), but also had to deal with several injuries. He eventually retired from the game in the 1982 summer at the age of 34, after a spell with RCD Español, amassing top flight totals of 234 matches and 83 goals.
Having studied medicine at the University of Bilbao at Leioa (now part of the University of the Basque Country during his playing career, Ruiz subsequently went into practice as a doctor specialising in the treatment of athletes. He performed roles assisting various sports teams, including basketball club CB Cajabilbao and the Spanish national squads in handball and women's football.
- "Los discípulos de Pichichi" [Pichichi's disciples]. El Correo (in Spanish). 9 October 2015. Retrieved 11 February 2016.
- ""Sentí un hormigueo cuando me ofrecieron regresar al club"" ["I felt a tingling when I was offered to return to the club"]. El Correo (in Spanish). 14 June 2011. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
- "Los cachorros son casi leones" [The pups are almost lions] (PDF). Mundo Deportivo (in Spanish). 23 May 1975. Retrieved 7 December 2015.
- "Spain – List of Topscorers ("Pichichi") 1929–2015". RSSSF. Retrieved 27 July 2016.