Robert Fernández (footballer)

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Roberto Fernández Bonillo (born 5 July 1962), often known simply as Robert or Roberto, is a Spanish former footballer who played mostly as a central midfielder.

Robert Fernández
Personal information
Full name Roberto Fernández Bonillo
Date of birth (1962-07-05) 5 July 1962 (age 60)
Place of birth Betxí, Spain
Height 1.79 m (5 ft 10 in)
Position(s) Midfielder
Youth career
1976–1978 Villarreal
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1978–1979 Villarreal
1979–1981 Castellón 63 (8)
1981–1986 Valencia 135 (36)
1986–1990 Barcelona 144 (35)
1990–1995 Valencia 123 (22)
1995–1999 Villarreal 142 (8)
1999–2001 Córdoba 67 (0)
Total 674 (109)
International career
1979–1980 Spain U18 10 (1)
1981 Spain U19 3 (0)
1980–1988 Spain U21 21 (7)
1982 Spain U23 1 (0)
1983 Spain amateur 2 (0)
1982–1991 Spain 29 (1)
Managerial career
2004 Valencia B
2004 Córdoba
2006–2007 Orihuela
2008–2009 Alzira
Representing  Spain
UEFA European Championship
Runner-up 1984 France
*Club domestic league appearances and goals

From 1981 and during the next 14 years, he played with Valencia and Barcelona, going on to amass La Liga totals of 439 matches and 95 goals over 15 seasons. He also had two spells at Villarreal, where he started his career.

Roberto represented the Spain national team for nearly one decade, appearing at one World Cup and one European Championship.

Club careerEdit

Born in Betxí, Province of Castellón, Fernández started playing professionally with CD Castellón in 1979 after emerging through the ranks of neighbours Villarreal CF. After two years, he moved to another club in the community, Valencia CF, proceeding to total 33 La Liga goals in his first four seasons but suffering relegation in 1986.

Fernández signed for FC Barcelona in the summer of 1986. He scored ten times in 40 matches in his debut campaign,[1] including a penalty in a 2–1 home win against Real Madrid,[2] which won that year's league ahead of the Catalans.

After being an essential unit as Barça won two vice-championships, two Copa del Rey trophies and the 1988–89 European Cup Winners' Cup, Fernández returned to Valencia in 1990. He helped the latter to two consecutive fourth-place finishes, and spent almost the entire 1993–94 on the sidelines due to injury.[3][4]

For the 1995–96 season, Fernández re-joined another familiar team, Villarreal who now competed in the Segunda División. He scored once in 36 appearances in his third year to help them to achieve a first-ever promotion, being immediately relegated afterwards. He retired in 2001 at almost 39, after two seasons in the second tier with Córdoba CF.[1]

Subsequently, after more than 700 official games, Fernández moved into coaching, being in charge of lowly Valencia B, Orihuela CF and UD Alzira in his native region. In the 2004–05 campaign he was one of four managers for Córdoba, who finished in 19th position and dropped down to Segunda División B.[5][1]

Fernández returned to Barcelona in the summer of 2015, in directorial capacities.[6][7][8][9] He left in June 2018 after his contract expired, being replaced by Eric Abidal who also played for the club.[10]

International careerEdit

Fernández earned 29 caps and scored one goal for Spain in nine years, and was included in the squad for the UEFA Euro 1984 and the 1990 FIFA World Cup tournaments. His debut came during the former's qualifying stage, in a 1–0 home win over Iceland on 27 October 1982 in which he played the full 90 minutes.[11]

International goalsEdit

# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1. 14 November 1990 Strahov, Prague, Czechoslovakia   Czechoslovakia 1–1 3–2 Euro 1992 qualifying[11]




Spain U21

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c Qué fue de… Roberto Fernández, un centrocampista 100% mediterráneo (What happened to… Roberto Fernández, 100% Mediterranean midfielder); 20 minutos, 24 October 2013 (in Spanish)
  2. ^ Lo que hay que tener (Whatever it takes); Mundo Deportivo, 24 May 1987 (in Spanish)
  3. ^ El vestuario ‘ché’, de uñas ('Ché' locker room, up in arms); Mundo Deportivo, 24 November 1993 (in Spanish)
  4. ^ La rotura del tendón de Aquiles, una dolencia tristemente conocida en Valencia (Achilles tendon rupture, all-too-familiar ailment at Valencia); El Desmarque, 16 March 2018 (in Spanish)
  5. ^ El fantasma del último descenso a Segunda B (The ghost of the last relegation to Segunda B); La Voz de Córdoba, 14 November 2017 (in Spanish)
  6. ^ Robert Fernández, nuevo director deportivo del Barcelona (Robert Fernández, new Barcelona sporting director); Goal, 21 July 2015 (in Spanish)
  7. ^ Pedro: "Robert Fernández ha hecho unas declaraciones muy desafortunadas" (Pedro: "Robert Fernandez's statements were really out of turn"); Sport, 12 August 2015 (in Spanish)
  8. ^ Lionel Messi will stay at Barcelona 'for life,' says director Robert Fernandez; ESPN FC, 4 September 2015
  9. ^ Robert Fernández, director deportivo del Barça: "Mi intención es que llegue un jugador más y si es posible, dos" (Robert Fernández, Barça's sporting director: "I am intent on bringing another player in and if possible, two"); Antena 3, 28 August 2017 (in Spanish)
  10. ^ Soccer-Abidal Returns to Barcelona as sporting director; The New York Times, 7 June 2018
  11. ^ a b Roberto Fernández Bonillo – International Matches; at RSSSF
  12. ^ ¡¡¡Campeones!!! (Champions!!!); Mundo Deportivo, 30 October 1986 (in Spanish)

External linksEdit