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EMILIO BUTRAGUENO

REAL NAME:  EMILIO BUTRAGUENO SANTOS
NICKNAME:  The Vulture
BORN:  JUL. 22, 1963
COUNTRY: Spain 
WORLD CUP APPEARANCES:  9 games in 2 tournaments ('86, '90) 
CLUBS: Real Madrid, Celaya
INTRODUCTION:The greatest Spanish player in the World Cup and one of the few players to have scored four goals in a match. 
CAREER INTERNATIONAL GOALS: 26 in 69 games
1986 World Cup - Mexico
Emilio Butragueno was one of the world's most promising attackers in the mid-eighties, although his form at the very top only stayed for a few short years.  Nicknamed "The Vulture", he already possessed all the skills and abilities to lead his country's attack at the tender age of 23.  In the first match against Brazil, however, he failed to find the net.  But his goal-scoring instincts were quickly evident in the second match against Northern Ireland.  He scored the goal only 65 seconds after the kick-off, beating Pat Jennings, the famous Irish goalkeeper.  This would turn out to be the quickest goal of the tournament, and won him a gold watch as a result.

He produced his greatest performance in the second round match against the Danish side.  Butragueno's name will always be link with this match.  This was the Denmark of Elkjaer and Michael Laudrup, who in the previous round had won all their first round matches, including a 6-1 annihilation of Uruguay and 2-0 defeat of West Germany.

The "Dynamite Danes" quickly took the lead through a penalty by Jesper Olsen. But then Spain's counter-attacking strategy caught them out time and again, with Butragueno the center of everything. First, his awareness in front of goal enabled him to capitalize on a poor back pass from Olsen.  He was then brought down in the penalty area and Goycochea, the notorious "Butcher of Bilbao", scored from the spot.
A rampant Butragueno scoring one of his four goals that crushed the favoured Danish side.

Butragueno quickly completed his hat-trick with two incisive attacks.  To round off one of the greatest individual displays seen in World Cup history, he turned his marker in the penalty area and was again brought down. This time, he took the penalty himself and scored his fourth goal.  No player since Eusebio in 1966 had scored four goals in the World Cup.  If not for Goycochea's insistence to take the first Spanish penalty, Butragueno might well have become the first player to score 5 goals in a World Cup match.

Against Belgium, however, it was a different story.  Unlike the attacking-minded Denmark, the Belgium side played a solid defense somewhat similar to the Spanish.  And aware of the threat that the Vulture poised,  the Belgian defenders marked him tightly throughout the game, never allow him an inch of space.  And they would also get physical with the smallish striker if necessary.  Belgium's moderate attack failed to topple Spain.  An 1-1 score-line after extra-time meant the game would be decided on penalties.  And it ended in a shoot-out defeat for Spain.
1990 World Cup - Italy
After his goal-scoring exploits in Mexico, the world was expecting a lot from Butragueno in his second World Cup.  But four years on, Butragueno had become a different player.  At his Spanish club Real Madrid, he played as an old-fashioned inside-forward, pulling strings from a deeper position for Mexican striker Hugo Sanchez.  This made it difficult for Butragueno to fill the out-and-out striker role the national team needed him to play.  And often isolated in the front-line, he could not score against the ultra-cautious, five-men defenses he played against.  Little did anybody know in 1986 that those goals against Denmark were to be the lasts he scored in the World Cup.

HIS GOALS IN THE WORLD CUP - COMPLETE RECORD
1986
1st round:  2nd match v. Northern Ireland
2nd round v. Denmark (4)



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