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José Mari Bakero 


Shirt name: Bakero
Shirt number for Barça: 6
Nationality: Spanish
Position: Central Midfielder
Seasons in Barça: 10

José Mari Bakero Escudero was a former Basque footballer and currently the coach. He was born in Goizueta (Navarra) on February 11, 1963 into a big family. As a kid, he wanted to be pelotari, Basque ball player, but he chose football and played in the lower teams of the Real Sociedad of San Sebastián. He made his debut in the first division at a young age of 17 with the native San Sebastián team, Donostiarra. During his first eight years there, he was part of the mythical team (with Luis Arconada, Jesús Mari Zamora, Satrústegui, etc) that captured two Spanish leagues in 1981 and 1982.



He started playing as a center forward and finished as a midfielder, always with clear offensive tasks. He was not a natural scorer, but always averaged a good number of goals per season thanks to his strong shooting, with his right foot and his head. He won the love of the supporters, from both Real Sociedad and FC Barcelona, due to his tireless fighting spirit and strong personality, which made him a true leader on the field.



At the age of 25, in 1988, he signed for FC Barcelona of Johan Cruyff, where he, along with many other Basque teammates (Txiki Begiristain, López Rekarte, Julio Salinas, Goiko, etc.) would make the foundations of the best Barcelona team in history, dubbed the “Dream Team.” It was with FC Barcelona that Bakero obtained the best successes of his career as a player. As a member of the “Dream Team”, Barcelona completely controlled the Spanish League and captured league titles four consecutive years which lead to Bakero to play in five European finals. Between 1988 and 1997 he played 329 games in 9 seasons.



After leaving Barcelona, and after short and difficult experience with Veracruz in Mexico, he retired from professional football after an unsuccessful trial with English club Norwich.



During his career he was capped 29 times for Spain and scored a total of 7 goals with the national team.
Bakero, with 489 games, is tied with Eusebio as the fourth player with most official games in the history of the Spanish league, only behind Zubizarreta, Buyo and Manolo Sanchís.

The former Spanish international was an assistant coach to Louis van Gaal and Llorenc Serra Ferrer at Barcelona and went on to a job with Mexican side Puebla. After a short period in which he was appointed sports adviser for the Generalitat de Cataluña and pundit in various communication means, he started his career as main coach with Málaga B, a branch of Málaga CF, a Spanish, second division team, replacing Antonio Tapia in the middle of the 2004-2005 season, where he saved the team from relegation.
In August 2005, he returned to Real Sociedad as the club’s Sports Director, later on, in March, 2006, fill the coaching spot and ensure the permanence of the team in that season. He is currently serving as Koeman's assist coach at Valencia.



The titles obtained with FC Barcelona were:
4 Spanish League titles: 1990-1991, 1991-1992, 1992-1993 & 1993-1994.
1 Champions League title: 1991-1992.
2 Cup Winners’ Cup title: 1989 & 1997.
1 Super cup of Europe: 1993.
5 Super cups of Spain: 1988, 1991, 1992, 1994 & 1996.
2 Copa del Rey titles: 1987 & 1990.




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