Gerhard Hanappi

Gerhard Hanappi (16 February 1929 – 23 August 1980) was an Austrian football midfielder who is often regarded as one of the greatest Austrian footballers. He is also the father of Hardy Hanappi.

Gerhard Hanappi
Gerhard Hanappi 1953.jpg
Hanappi in 1953
Personal information
Full name Gerhard Hanappi
Date of birth (1929-02-16)16 February 1929
Place of birth Vienna, Austria
Date of death 23 August 1980(1980-08-23) (aged 51)
Place of death Vienna, Austria
Height 169 cm (5 ft 7 in)[1]
Position(s) Midfielder
Youth career
1942–1947 SC Wacker Wien
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1947–1950 SC Wacker Wien 72 (16)
1950–1965 Rapid Wien 333 (114)
Total 405 (130)
National team
1948–1962 Austria 93 (12)
*Club domestic league appearances and goals
Austria national football team in 1958 with the following players – from left to right, standing; Walter Horak, Ernst Happel, Karl Koller, Alfred Körner, Paul Halla, Walter Schleger; crouched: Helmut Senekowitsch, Gerhard Hanappi, Rudolf Szanwald, Franz Swoboda and Johann Buzek.

Club careerEdit

A versatile midfielder, Hanappi started his career at SC Wacker Wien, where he made his Bundesliga debut in 1947. Deemed as Austria's biggest football talent, he then controversially moved to play for big city rivals Rapid Vienna from 1950 till 1965. His time at Rapid proved to be very successful, winning the Austrian Championship title 7 times. He also captained the side for seven years and was chosen in Rapid's Team of the Century in 1999.

International careerEdit

He made his debut for Austria at only 19 years of age in November 1948 against Sweden and was a participant at the 1954 World Cup in Switzerland, where they reached 3rd place, and at the 1958 World Cup. He captained the national team from 1955 on.

His last international was a September 1962 match against Czechoslovakia. He earned 93 caps, scoring 12 goals.[2] He has held the national team appearances record until Anton Polster earned his 94th cap in June 1998.

Playing styleEdit

One of the finest midfielders of his generation,[3] Hanappi was nominally a goalscoring wing half, however his versatility allowed him to successfully play in almost all positions. Hanappi's technical abilities and creativity allowed him to play as an effective play-maker. He was also very intelligent with an excellent sense of anticipation which made him very useful in defensive duties, and also enabled him to make well timed runs in the box. This along with his accurate shot enabled him to be a prolific goalscorer, even once being league top scorer.

Retirement and deathEdit

After his football career Hanappi worked as an architect. He planned the Weststadion in Vienna, which was renamed to Gerhard Hanappi Stadium after his death. He died of cancer in 1980, aged 51.




External linksEdit


  1. ^ In die Jahre gekommen, Legendäre Momente im Hanappi-Stadion,, 2014-06-06
  2. ^ Appearances for Austrian National Team – RSSSF
  3. ^ Europe's best Player of the Century – IFFHS
Preceded by Austrian Sportsman of the Year
Succeeded by