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World Cup 2002


Star player: Raúl

Full name: Raúl González Blanco
Date of birth: 27 June 1977
Club:Real Madrid

The new phenomena of Spanish football, Raúl is rewriting the record books at the tender age of 24. The Real Madrid striker has already scored 139 goals in the Spanish league, already the highest of any player still active, and he is well on line to beat Zarra's record of 251.

Born and bred in Madrid, Raúl was actually on the youth books of Atlético Madrid before he joined local rivals Real Madrid in 1992 after Atlético decided to disband their junior teams (he did however manage to score 65 goals in his first season in Atlético's 'infantil' team). He made his full debut with Real Madrid under manager Jorge Valdano in October 1994, and although he didn't score he became a permanent fixture in the first team.

A bit of rebel when young, he has settled down since gettig married three years ago (he dedicates all of his goals to his wife Mamen by kissing his wedding ring). He has been the top scorer ('Pichichi') in the Spanish league twice, and he has already won the Champions League, the Intercontinental cup (scoring the only goal) and three Spanish league titles.

His first game for 'la selección' came in October 1996 against the Czech Republic, and since then he has scored 25 goals in just over 50 appearances, only one behind Butragueño and two behind the all time top scorer, his club captain and teammate Fernando Hierro. .