Goyo Benito

Gregorio "Goyo" Benito Rubio (21 October 1946 – 2 April 2020) was a Spanish footballer who played as a central defender. He spent most of his 16-year professional career with Real Madrid.[1][2]

Goyo Benito
Personal information
Full name Gregorio Benito Rubio
Date of birth (1946-10-21)21 October 1946
Place of birth Puente del Arzobispo, Spain
Date of death 2 April 2020(2020-04-02) (aged 73)
Place of death Madrid, Spain
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position(s) Centre back
Youth career
Salesianos Atocha
1963–1966 Real Madrid
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1966–1982 Real Madrid 317 (2)
1966–1968Rayo Vallecano (loan) 43 (0)
Total 360 (2)
National team
1969–1970 Spain U23 2 (0)
1966–1970 Spain amateur 13 (0)
1971–1978 Spain 22 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Club careerEdit

Benito was born in El Puente del Arzobispo, Toledo, Castile-La Mancha. After practicing track and field in his early teens, inclusively being national javelin throw champion at school level,[3] he signed for La Liga powerhouse Real Madrid in the summer of 1963, aged nearly 17. After two years on loan to neighbouring Rayo Vallecano, in Segunda División (his second being cut short as he was called for military service in Sidi Ifni), he returned to his main club, remaining there for the following 14 seasons and winning six leagues and five Spanish Cups.[3]

In 1982, after just 16 league appearances in his last two seasons combined, Benito retired from football at the age of 35. He amassed Real Madrid official totals of 420 games and three goals;[3] for his services to the club, he was only one of two players to have the Laureada being bestowed upon him by president Santiago Bernabéu – the other being Pirri.[4]

International careerEdit

Benito earned 22 caps for Spain, over roughly seven years. His debut was on 9 May 1971 in a 2–0 away win against Cyprus for the UEFA Euro 1972 qualifiers, but he would never take part in any major international tournament as the national team failed to qualify for any during that timeframe.[5]

Additionally, Benito was part of the squad at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico, playing all the matches for the eventual quarter-finalists.[6]

DeathEdit

Benito spent his final years in a nursing home in Madrid, suffering from Alzheimer's disease. On 2 April 2020, the 73-year-old died of COVID-19 after his residence was one of several hit by the pandemic.[7]

HonoursEdit

Real Madrid[8]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ López, Antoni (28 November 2009). "Carles Rexach y Goyo Benito recuerdan los partidos de máxima rivalidad que vivieron, 42 entre ambos" [Carles Rexach and Goyo Benito remember top rivalry matches they experienced, 42 combined]. La Vanguardia (in Spanish). Retrieved 18 October 2017.
  2. ^ Barker, Gabby (2 April 2020). ""Please don't hit me anymore, Mr. Benito" and other unforgettable moments of a Real Madrid legend". Sports Finding. Retrieved 3 April 2020.
  3. ^ a b c "Goyo Benito" (in Spanish). Real Madrid Fans. Retrieved 18 February 2010.
  4. ^ "Benito y Pirri son los únicos que tienen tan alta condecoración" [Benito and Pirri are the only ones so highly decorated]. Diario AS (in Spanish). 20 September 2007. Retrieved 11 September 2017.
  5. ^ Pla Díaz, Emilio. "Gregorio Benito – International Appearances". RSSSF. Retrieved 18 February 2010.
  6. ^ Goyo BenitoFIFA competition record
  7. ^ "Muere Goyo Benito, histórico defensa del Real Madrid" [Death of Goyo Benito, historical Real Madrid defender]. Mundo Deportivo (in Spanish). 2 April 2020. Retrieved 3 April 2020.
  8. ^ "Gregorio Benito" (in Spanish). Real Madrid CF. Archived from the original on 24 December 2009. Retrieved 18 February 2010.

External linksEdit