Michel Hidalgo

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Michel Hidalgo
Michel Hidalgo (1981).jpg
Hidalgo as France head coach in 1981
Personal information
Full name Michel François Hidalgo
Date of birth (1933-03-22)22 March 1933
Place of birth Leffrinckoucke, France
Date of death 26 March 2020(2020-03-26) (aged 87)
Place of death Marseille, France
Height 1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)[1]
Position(s) Midfielder
Youth career
US Normande
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1952–1954 Le Havre 47 (13)
1954–1957 Reims 66 (23)
1957–1966 Monaco 256 (26)
Total 369 (62)
National team
1962 France 1 (0)
Teams managed
1967–1968 Monaco (2nd team)
1968–1969 Menton (player-coach)
Monaco (2nd team)
France (assistant)
1976–1984 France
1986–1991 Marseille (director of football)
Representing  France (as manager)
UEFA European Championship
Winner 1984
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Michel François Hidalgo (22 March 1933 – 26 March 2020) was a French professional footballer and manager. He was the head coach of the French national team from 1976 to 1984, with whom he won the UEFA Euro 1984 on home soil, also reaching the semi-finals of the 1982 FIFA World Cup.

Early life[edit]

Michel François Hidalgo[2] was born 22 March 1933 in Leffrinckoucke, Nord.[1] He was born to a Spanish-born father and a French mother in northern France, and grew up in Normandy, where he started playing football. He was named after Mexican patriot Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla.[citation needed]

Club career[edit]

A midfielder, Hidalgo was champion of Normandie Juniors in 1952 with US Normande, before signing up tp Le Havre's books for two seasons, later playing for Reims, with whom he played and scored a goal in the 4–3 defeat to Real Madrid in the 1956 European Cup Final, also winning a league title in 1955.[3][4]

Under the wing of Rocher, who signed him for Monaco, Hidalgo won two league titles and two national cup titles with Monaco. Between 1964 and 1970, he presided over the UNFP, a players' syndicate.[citation needed]

International career[edit]

At international level, Hidalgo was capped once for the France national team in 1962 in a friendly match against Italy.[5]

Managerial career[edit]

Hidalgo started managing the Monaco second team in 1967 and served as a player-manager with Menton from 1968 until 1969.[citation needed]

On 27 March 1976, he was appointed France national team head coach, replacing Ștefan Kovács – under whom he had previously served as an assistant – during a time when France was having difficulty in major tournaments. Included in his side was playmaker and captain Michel Platini, who helped the side turn a new page in their book and get back to winning ways. After suffering a first-round elimination at the 1978 FIFA World Cup, in the 1982 FIFA World Cup Hidalgo led the team to the semi-finals, where he lost to the West German side on penalties following a 3–3 draw after extra-time; France eventually finished the tournament in fourth place. In 1984, he won the European Championship on home soil, beating Spain 2–0 in the final in Paris; this was France's first major international title. The exciting attacking style of football that he implemented with the French national side during this period was known as "champagne football" in the media. Hidalgo is also regarded as the architect of the French "carré magique" (magic square), which was nickname given to the creative and talented four-man midfield of the French national side during the 80s, which was made up of Michel Platini, Alain Giresse, Jean Tigana, and Luis Fernandez.[3][4][6][7][8]

After his victory, he passed the reins over to his assistant Henri Michel and got a job as the National Technical Director, where he remained until 1986, afterwards choosing a managerial position at Marseille. He is considered an idol among the Marseille supporters. He strayed from the limelight after 1991, taking a sidelining role as a football pundit on Demain, c'est foot, a football show on TMC Monte Carlo.[citation needed]


Hidalgo died on 26 March 2020 in Marseille, at the age of 87, after a lengthy struggle with a disease.[3][4]









  1. ^ a b "Michel Hidalgo". L'Équipe (in French). Paris. Retrieved 9 May 2021.
  2. ^ "Michel Hidalgo, coach who led France to centre stage in world football – obituary". The Daily Telegraph. London. 17 April 2020. Retrieved 9 May 2021.
  3. ^ a b c "French football mourns coaching great Hidalgo". UEFA. 26 March 2020. Retrieved 10 September 2020.
  4. ^ a b c d "Morto Hidalgo, profeta del "calcio champagne": vinse l'Europeo '84 da c.t. della Francia". La Gazzetta dello Sport (in Italian). 26 March 2020. Retrieved 26 March 2020.
  5. ^ "Michel Hidalgo, the first "winner" in French football, dies - France 24". Teller Report. 26 March 2020. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  6. ^ "Francia, morto Michel Hidalgo: è stato il ct del calcio champagne". La Repubblica (in Italian). 26 March 2020. Retrieved 26 March 2020.
  7. ^ "Venerable Hidalgo relives Reims heyday". FIFA. 10 July 2012. Retrieved 26 March 2020.
  8. ^ D'Orsi, Enzo. "CALCIO - Francia" (in Italian). Treccani: Enciclopedia dello Sport (2002). Retrieved 26 March 2020.

External links[edit]