Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos said he’s “honored” to be compared with the club’s all-time great, Paco Gento. The 31-year-old has scored a record six La Liga titles in nine years at the Santiago Bernabeu and is widely considered one of the best defenders in world football today.
Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos has equaled “Paco” Gento’s club record of 456 appearances. The Spanish defender is the fourth player to reach this milestone, following in the footsteps of “Paco” Gento, Iker Casillas and Raul.
When Real Madrid defeated Athletic Bilbao 2-0 to win the Spanish Supercopa on Sunday (see the replay on ESPN+ in the US), they won their first prize of the season and their captain carved his name further into the club’s history.
Luka Modric scored Real’s first goal in the Saudi Arabian city of Riyadh, before Karim Benzema sealed the win with his 24th goal of the season, a penalty kick conversion.
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Aside from the goals, the 86th-minute change that saw Marcelo replace Vinicius Junior to seal the win was undoubtedly the most memorable moment of the game. The 33-year-old left-short back’s appearance at the King Fahd International Stadium may have amounted to nothing more than a fleeting cameo, but it was enough to match a historic club record that had lasted for more than 40 years.
Marcelo drew level with Los Blancos legend Francisco “Paco” Gento as the player with the most championships with Real Madrid after conquering the Supercopa.
The cup was Marcelo’s 23rd major honor since coming at the Bernabeu from Fluminense in January 2007. Few could have imagined that 15 years later, that adolescent would match Gento’s score with the Spanish giants between 1954 and 1970.
Marcelo remarked on the field after the final, “This is a historic moment for myself and for the club.” “I’ve dreamt about these moments since I was a child. I’m honored to be given the chance to raise such a significant title. Now I’d want to continue contributing to the club’s heritage.”
@MarceloM12 #SUPERCAMPEONES @MarceloM12 pic.twitter.com/c64p1M3RuU
— January 16, 2022, Real Madrid C.F. (@realmadrid)
Gento, who is now 88 years old, was an agile and skilful left winger who cemented his reputation as a major member of Real Madrid’s great teams of the 1950s and 1960s. Between 1953 and 1971, he won 12 LaLiga championships, six European Cups, two Copa del Reys, the Intercontinental Cup, the Club World Cup, and the old Latin Cup during his 18 years at the Bernabeu.
Gento has the most European Cup/Champions League victories of any player in history, and his trophy haul is even more astounding when you consider that the European Cup didn’t even exist until his fourth season as a senior professional.
Marcelo, on the other hand, has five LaLiga championships, four Champions Leagues, two Copa del Reys, four FIFA Club World Cups, three European Supercups, and five Spanish Supercopas to his credit. With Madrid five points ahead at the top of LaLiga and still participating in the Copa del Rey and the Champions League, he has a good chance of passing Gento this season.
Marcelo, though, is still a long way behind the most decorated players in the history of some of Europe’s other elite clubs, despite winning 23 titles throughout his career.
Paolo Maldini, AC Milan (25 trophies won)
Maldini, regarded as one of the best defenders of all time, was a key figure for Milan during a period of continuous success in the 1990s and 2000s, winning seven Serie A championships and five European Cup/Champions League wins.
Since joining PSG in 2012, Veratti has amassed an incredible amount of domestic silverware. By winning the Ligue 1 championship, the Coupe de France, the (now defunct) Coupe de la Ligue, and the Trophee des Champions all in the same season, the 29-year-old midfielder has won four quadruples.
Muller has won 10 Bundesliga championships, six DFB Pokals, seven DFL Supercups, two Champions Leagues, two UEFA Super Cups, and two FIFA Club World Cups since joining Bayern in the 2009-10 season. In addition to becoming the most decorated individual player in German football history, the striker also won the World Cup with his nation in 2014.
While Manchester United players account for the top 14 spots on the list of most Premier League winners’ medals, none has won more than Giggs’ 13. In addition to the Premier League, the Welsh winger has won four FA Cups, three League Cups, and two Champions Leagues.
When Messi debuted for Barcelona in 2004, the club had already won 61 titles in its history. That haul had climbed by more than 50% to 96 on the day he departed for Paris Saint-Germain in 2021. Dani Alves, Messi’s former Barcelona teammate, is the most decorated player in men’s football history, having won a total of 43 championships at both the club and international level.
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