Walter Pandiani

Walter Gerardo Pandiani Urquiza (born 27 April 1976) is a Uruguayan former professional footballer who played as a striker, and a manager.

Walter Pandiani
Pandiani in August 2016
Personal information
Full name Walter Gerardo Pandiani Urquiza
Date of birth (1976-04-27) 27 April 1976 (age 44)
Place of birth Montevideo, Uruguay
Height 1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)
Playing position(s) Striker
Club information
Current team
Lorca (manager)
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1995–1997 Progreso 22 (12)
1997–1998 Basáñez 0 (0)
1998–2000 Peñarol 71 (29)
2000–2005 Deportivo La Coruña 86 (31)
2002–2003Mallorca (loan) 33 (13)
2005Birmingham City (loan) 14 (4)
2005–2006 Birmingham City 17 (2)
2006–2007 Espanyol 52 (8)
2007–2011 Osasuna 92 (27)
2011–2012 Espanyol 16 (3)
2012–2013 Villarreal 17 (2)
2013 Atlético Baleares 9 (1)
2013–2014 Miramar Misiones 19 (5)
2015–2016 Lausanne-Sport 15 (1)
Total 463 (138)
National team
2001–2004 Uruguay 4 (0)
Teams managed
2014–2015 Masnou (youth)
2016 Masnou
2016–2017 Europa (youth)
2017–2018 Hospitalet (youth)
2019 Lorca
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

His performances for Peñarol earned him a move to Deportivo in Spain, where he remained for the vast majority of his career, also representing Mallorca, Espanyol (twice) and Osasuna. He also spent a year with Birmingham City in England.

Over 12 seasons, Pandiani amassed La Liga totals of 279 games and 82 goals.

Club careerEdit

Early years / DeportivoEdit

Born in Montevideo, Pandiani started his career with hometown club Progreso, moving on to Basáñez and Peñarol, the latter also in the country's capital. In December 1999 he agreed terms to join Deportivo La Coruña as a replacement for his compatriot Sergio Martínez,[1] and the move was officially completed the following January when he signed a five-and-a-half-year deal for an undisclosed fee, still remaining with Peñarol until the end of the season.[2]

Pandiani made his debut for the Spaniards on 27 August 2000, coming from the bench for Diego Tristán in a 2–0 win over Espanyol at Estadio Riazor in the Supercopa de España return match.[3][4] Despite never being an undisputed starter for the Galician team he was one of their most important attacking elements, often scoring as a substitute, netting 13 goals during the 2003–04 season.[5][6][7]

Pandiani, who had a successful loan stint at Mallorca while still at Depor,[8] moved to Birmingham City in the Premier League, also on loan, in January 2005, after a series of run-ins with coach Javier Irureta.[9][10][11] He scored a goal on his debut against Southampton in a 2–1 home win,[12] and went on to score three more in the season, prompting manager Steve Bruce to sign him on a permanent contract for a reported fee of £3 million.[13]


Having failed to continue to display his previous form, Pandiani returned to Spain on 13 January 2006, after completing a move to Espanyol for £1 million.[13]

In his first full season he scored only seven La Liga goals,[14] including a first-half hat-trick against eventual champions Real Madrid in the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium,[15] but was top scorer in the 2006–07 UEFA Cup with eleven as his club reached the final, which they lost on penalties to Sevilla.[14]


For 2007–08, Pandiani joined Osasuna.[16] Scarcely used in his first year, he was instrumental for the Navarrese in the following campaign, especially after the arrival in mid-October of coach José Antonio Camacho,[17] finishing as the club's top scorer.

Osasuna's first goal of the 2010–11 season only came in the fourth matchday, and the 34-year-old Pandiani scored it through a header as the team came from behind to win it 3–1 against Real Sociedad, at home.[18] On 30 January 2011, during half-time of a 1–0 home win against Real Madrid, he was involved in a "verbal spat" with Cristiano Ronaldo, suggesting afterwards that "As a footballer he is a phenomenon but to do the things he does, maybe he has a screw loose."[19]

Later careerEdit

The 35-year-old Pandiani returned to Espanyol for 2011–12, signing a one-year contract[20] and acting mainly as backup to youth graduate Álvaro Vázquez.[21][22] On 22 September he came from the bench to score the game's only goal at home against Getafe, in stoppage time.[23] On 27 October he repeated the feat, albeit not so late in the game, with a powerful header at home to Real Betis.[24]

In late August 2012, Pandiani signed a one-year contract with Segunda División club Villarreal, where his 18-year-old son Nico was a C-team player.[25] On his debut, at home to Guadalajara on 2 September, he entered the game as a second-half substitute and scored the winning goal,[26] and did the same the following week in another narrow win, at Ponferradina.[27]

In late January 2013, Pandiani and Nico left Villarreal and joined Atlético Baleares of the Segunda División B.[28][29] They both started in Nico's second senior match, and Pandiani scored in the 2–1 defeat away to Sant Andreu on 12 May.[30]

In October 2013, the pair returned to Uruguay and signed for Primera División club Miramar Misiones.[31] Pandiani scored three times in the six remaining matches of the 2013–14 Apertura, as his team finished next to bottom, and played regularly during the Clausura but scored only twice as they repeated their previous finish, which contributed to relegation.[32]

Pandiani returned to the Barcelona area where he spent the 2014–15 season coaching junior teams at Masnou, where two of his sons played. He said that although he had always wanted to coach, he still thought of himself as a player and was open to offers;[33] in June 2015, he signed for Lausanne-Sport of the Swiss Challenge League, with the remit of supervising and teaching the tricks of the trade to the 15-year-old striker Andi Zeqiri, who had already made his first-team debut.[34]

Pandiani announced his retirement on 16 June 2016 after a 23-year professional career, at the age of 40.[35]


Pandiani returned to Masnou after retiring, now as a first-team manager. Sacked on 2 November 2016,[36] he was appointed at the helm of Europa's Juvenil A squad on 13 December.[37]

On 27 June 2017, Pandiani was named manager of Hospitalet's youth squad.[38]

International careerEdit

Despite his relatively successful career in Spain, Pandiani only received four caps for Uruguay,[39] the first coming on 28 March 2001 in a 1–0 home defeat against Paraguay in the 2002 World Cup qualifiers.[40]

Style of playEdit

Nicknamed El Rifle (the rifle),[41][42] Pandiani's best assets were his strength and aerial ability.[5]

Career statisticsEdit


Year Apps Goals
2001 1 0
2002 0 0
2003 1 0
2004 2 0
Total 4 0







  1. ^ "Manteca Martínez por Pandiani" [Manteca Martínez for Pandiani] (in Spanish). Deportivo La Coruña. 23 December 1999. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  2. ^ "Walter Pandiani jugará hasta junio en Peñarol" [Walter Pandiani will play in Peñarol until June] (in Spanish). La Red 21. 18 January 2000. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  3. ^ a b "El Deportivo se impone al Espanyol (2–0) y gana su segunda Supercopa" [Deportivo best Espanyol (2–0) and win their second Supercup]. El Mundo (in Spanish). 28 August 2000. Retrieved 18 October 2017.
  4. ^ "Deportivo win Spanish Super Cup". Special Broadcasting Service. 29 August 2000. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  5. ^ a b Tylko, Ignacio (23 September 2003). "Walter Pandiani, a un paso de superar el récord de Roy Makaay en el Deportivo" [Walter Pandiani, about to surpass Roy Makaay's record at Deportivo]. Diario de León (in Spanish). Retrieved 9 January 2017.
  6. ^ "Pandiani llegó a trece" [Pandiani made it to thirteen] (in Spanish). La Red 21. 24 May 2004. Retrieved 9 January 2017.
  7. ^ Martínez Duarte, Fernando (15 April 2014). "El Dépor presume de suplentes goleadores" [Dépor boast of scoring substitutes] (in Spanish). Vavel. Retrieved 12 September 2012.
  8. ^ Hall, Andy (7 October 2003). "Pandiani seeks magic seven". UEFA. Retrieved 7 May 2016.
  9. ^ "Pandiani: "Cuando todo va mal Irureta se lava las manos"" [Pandiani: "When everything goes wrong Irureta washes his hands"]. El Mundo (in Spanish). 18 January 2005. Retrieved 9 January 2017.
  10. ^ Kendall, Mark (19 January 2005). "Depor boss blasts Pandiani". Sky Sports. Retrieved 26 October 2008.
  11. ^ "Birmingham complete Pandiani loan". BBC Sport. 1 February 2005. Retrieved 26 October 2008.
  12. ^ "Birmingham 2–1 Southampton". BBC Sport. 2 February 2005. Retrieved 26 October 2008.
  13. ^ a b "Pandiani completes Espanyol move". BBC Sport. 13 January 2006. Retrieved 26 October 2008.
  14. ^ a b c "Pandiani picks up scoring prize". UEFA. 17 May 2007. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
  15. ^ "Soccer: Real Madrid rallies against Espanyol and rises to top of Spanish League". The New York Times. 13 May 2007. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
  16. ^ Kendall, Mark (29 July 2007). "Osasuna swoop for Rifle". Sky Sports. Retrieved 26 October 2008.
  17. ^ "Mi sueño es jugar en Peñarol con mi hijo" [I dream of playing in Peñarol with my son] (in Spanish). ESPN Deportes. 14 January 2009. Retrieved 12 September 2012.
  18. ^ "Real win fiery encounter, Osasuna win". ESPN FC. 21 September 2010. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  19. ^ "Pandiani: Ronaldo has 'screw loose'". ESPN FC. 3 February 2011. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  20. ^ "Pandiani pens Espanyol deal". Sky Sports. 2 September 2011. Retrieved 13 November 2011.
  21. ^ Aldunate, Ramiro (27 October 2011). "Pandiani siempre se guarda una bala" [Pandiani always has one bullet left]. Marca (in Spanish). Retrieved 12 September 2012.
  22. ^ "Pandiani y Albín, a salvar al Espanyol" [Pandiani and Albín, to Espanyol's rescue] (in Spanish). Liga BBVA. 18 January 2012. Archived from the original on 22 January 2012. Retrieved 12 September 2012.
  23. ^ "Late Pandiani strike sinks Getafe". FIFA. 22 September 2011. Archived from the original on 26 September 2011. Retrieved 9 September 2012.
  24. ^ "Espanyol extend Betis losing streak". Eurosport. 28 October 2011. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  25. ^ Corrigan, Dermot (28 August 2012). "Pandianis happy with Villarreal move". ESPN FC. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  26. ^ "Another comeback in El Madrigal (2–1)". Villarreal CF. 2 September 2012. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  27. ^ "Pandiani acaba con las ilusiones de la Ponferradina" [Pandiani destroys Ponferradina's illusions]. Marca (in Spanish). 8 September 2012. Retrieved 9 September 2012.
  28. ^ "Presentación de Nico y Walter Pandiani" [Introducing Nico and Walter Pandiani] (in Spanish). CD Atlético Baleares. 31 January 2013. Archived from the original on 16 February 2013. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
  29. ^ Moreno, Jorge A. (2 February 2013). "El Atlético Baleares une a los Pandiani" [Atlético Baleares unite the Pandianis]. ABC (in Spanish). Retrieved 17 February 2013.
  30. ^ "Crónica 2ª División B: UE Sant Andreu 2–1 At Baleares" [2ª División B report: UE Sant Andreu 2–1 At Baleares] (in Spanish). Fútbol Balear. 12 May 2013. Retrieved 5 February 2014.
  31. ^ Basal, Gonzalo (29 October 2013). "Walter Pandiani volverá al fútbol uruguayo para defender a Miramar Misiones" [Walter Pandiani returns to Uruguayan football to play for Miramar Misiones]. El Diario (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 21 February 2014. Retrieved 5 February 2014.
  32. ^ Fernández, Francisco (26 February 2015). "Uruguay 2013/14". RSSSF. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
  33. ^ Capdevila, Sergi (2 December 2014). "El fútbol base del Masnou, en manos del 'Rifle' Pandiani" [The youth setup at Masnou, in the hands of 'Rifle' Pandiani]. Sport (in Spanish). Retrieved 2 June 2015.
  34. ^ "Communiqué de presse" [Press release] (in French). FC Lausanne-Sport. 2 June 2015. Archived from the original on 12 July 2015. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
  35. ^ "Pandiani anuncia su retirada" [Pandiani announces his retirement]. Sport (in Spanish). 16 June 2016. Retrieved 16 June 2016.
  36. ^ "Walter Pandiani deja de entrenar al Masnou" [Walter Pandiani no longer in charge of Masnou]. Mundo Deportivo (in Spanish). 2 November 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
  37. ^ "Pandiani dirigirá al Juvenil A del Europa" [Pandiani will manage the Juvenil A of Europa] (in Spanish). Diario La Grada. 13 December 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
  38. ^ "Pandiani dirigirá al juvenil de L'Hospitalet" [Pandiani will manage the juvenil of L'Hospitalet]. Sport (in Spanish). 27 June 2017. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
  39. ^ "Pandiani no va con Uruguay" [Pandiani does not go with Uruguay] (in Spanish). Navarra Sport. 30 October 2009. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  40. ^ Tabeira, Martín (31 October 2006). "Uruguay – International Matches 2001–2005". RSSSF. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  41. ^ ""El Rifle" Pandiani podría debutar frente a la Deportiva" ['The Rifle' Pandiani could make debut against Deportiva]. Diario de León (in Spanish). 28 August 2012. Retrieved 12 September 2012.
  42. ^ Badenes, Raül (2 September 2012). "El 'rifle' de Pandiani caza otra remontada" [Pandiani's 'rifle' hunts another comeback]. El Periódico Mediterráneo (in Spanish). Retrieved 12 September 2012.
  43. ^ "Pandiani, Walter". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman. Retrieved 11 November 2011.
  44. ^ Miguelez, José (29 June 2003). "Eto'o pone Mallorca a brindar" [Eto'o has Mallorca toasting]. El País (in Spanish). Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  45. ^ Astruells, Andrés (13 April 2006). "¡Increíble Espanyol!" [Incredible Espanyol!]. Mundo Deportivo (in Spanish). Retrieved 5 January 2020.

External linksEdit