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Antonio Ramallets

Seasons in the club: 1946-61
Played matches: 473

Antonio Ramallets was one of the best goalkeepers in the history of Barça and all of Spanish football.Born on January 4, 1924, Ramallets first signed with Barcelona in 1946 at the age of 23 after spending time with CE Europa, San Fernando and Mallorca. He then spent the 1946/47 season on loan at Real Valladolid. He returned to Barcelona where he became the second choice goalkeeper behind then starting goalkeeper Velasco. He eventually made his La Liga debut in a 2-1 win over Sevilla on November 28 1948. Although this was his only appearance he made during the 1948/49 season, in subsequent seasons he established himself as the club’s regular choice keeper. He was initially the substitute for Velasco until 1949 when Velasco got injured and he was given the opportunity to play.

When Ramallets became Barça´s official goalkeeper it coincided with an era of maximum glory for the team and he achieved many awards in the “Cinco Copas” (Five Cups) era as well as in the era of the trainer Helenio Herrera. He was a prominent member of the successful 1950s CF Barcelona team that also included Joan Segarra, Gonzalvo, Kubala, Kocsis, Evaristo, Luis Suarez and Czibor.

Swift, agile, and above all very smart, were the best qualities of Antonio Ramallets who knew how to be spectacular and simple at the same time. He established himself definitively as a goalkeeper in the 1950 World Cup celebrated in Brazil. Between 1950 and 1961 Ramallets played 35 games for Spain, making his debut against Chile on June 29 1950 during the 1950 World Cup. It was at this time that he was christened with the nickname “Gato de Maracaná” (The cat of Maracana) following a 1-0 victory over England. Ramallets also played 7 games for the Catalan XI.

However his worst memory was certainly the unfortunate final of the European Cup in Berna in 1961. Barça played against Benfica and lost  3-2 after a match full of missed chances for the blue and clarets and in which Ramallet scored an own goal. This more than likely influenced his decision to retire.

On the March 6, 1962 Ramallet received an emotional homage from the Nou Camp fans in a match between Barça and Hamburg which ended with Barça being victorious 5-1. In this match he was awarded the “Medalla de Mérito Deportivo” (a medal for sports excellence).

After he retired, he spent 4 consecutive seasons coaching 4 different teams in La Liga. In the 1962-1963 season, he coached Real Valladolid and then coached Real Zaragoza, Murcia and then Real Valladolid again in consecutive years.

6 Spanish Leagues (1947/48, 48/49, 51/52, 52/53, 58/59, and 59/60)
2 Feria Cups now known as UEFA Cup (1957/58 and 59/60)
2 Latin Cups (1949 and 1952)
5 Spanish Cups (1950/51, 51/52, 52/53, 56/57, and 58/59)
3 Eva Duarte Cups (1948, 1952 and 1953).
5 Zamora Trophies (1952, 1956, 1957, 1959, 1960)