Alfredo Stéfano di Stéfano LaulhéLegendary Argentina Footballer
- Date of Birth
- July 4, 1926
- Place of Birth
- Buenos Aires, Argentina
- 1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)
- Playing Position
Alfredo Stéfano di Stéfano Laulhé (Spanish pronunciation: [alˈfɾeðo ði (e)sˈtefano]; 4 July 1926 – 7 July 2014) was an Argentine-Spanish footballer and coach, widely regarded as one of the greatest players of all time. He was most associated with Real Madrid and was instrumental in their domination of the European Champions’ Cup during the 1950s, a period in which the club won the trophy in five consecutive seasons from 1956. Along with Francisco Gento and José María Zárraga, he was one of only three players to play a part in all five victories. Di Stéfano played international football mostly for Spain, but he also played for Argentina and Colombia.
Di Stéfano, nicknamed “Saeta rubia” (“blonde arrow”), was a powerful forward with great stamina, tactical versatility, and vision, who could also play almost anywhere on the pitch. He is currently the fifth highest scorer in the history of Spain’s top division, and Real Madrid’s second highest league goalscorer of all time, with 216 goals in 282 league matches between 1953 and 1964. He is the second highest goalscorer in the history of El Clásico.
In November 2003, to celebrate UEFA’s Jubilee, he was selected as the Golden Player of Spain by the Royal Spanish Football Federation as their most outstanding player of the past 50 years. In 2004 he was named by Pelé in the FIFA 100 list of the world’s greatest living players (in September 2009, he said Di Stéfano was the best Argentinian player “ever”). He was voted fourth, behind Pelé, Diego Maradona, and Johan Cruyff, in a vote organized by France Football magazine which consulted their former Ballon d’Or winners to elect the Football Player of the Century.
Pelé, Eusébio, Luis Suárez, Sandro Mazzola and John Charles described Di Stéfano as “the most complete footballer in the history of the game”.