English Press also Remember Puskás
INDEX / Hungarian News Service
Saturday, 18 November 2006, 16:24
Saturday, leading articles appeared in German and English dailies,
covering the life and career of Ferenc Puskás, who died on Friday morning
at 79 years of age.
Had the World on His Left Foot", "Leader of the Miracle Team", "The Major
Has Departed" - with these and other similar titles, extensive articles
about the death of Puskás Ferenc, illustrated with dramatic photos,
appeared in all of the national German papers.
of the Century
Tagesspiegel dubbed him one of the soccer geniuses of the century, not
forgetting the significant role he played in the match of the century,
1953's England - Hungary pre-championship friendly. The paper did not
leave out the final in Bern, either, stressing that the Hungarian player
drank beer and smoked cigarettes during the quarter-final, only to score a
goal in the sixth minute of the final match.
According to the Berliner Zeitung, he was a genius striker. His build
appeared to be somewhat slight, but on the pitch, he was a giant.
Meanwhile, Die Welt cited a quotation of his from decades earlier, "Football
is life itself.".
Frankfurer Allgemeine Zeitung remarked that Hungary had lost its most
popular citizen, since for Hungarians, Ferenc Puskás is the nation's best
known representative the world over. Neither the country's Nobel
Prize-winning scientists, nor its most famous composers, nor its most
distinguished literary figures could hold a candle to him in this respect.
In the opinion of Britain's The Daily Telegraph, great footballers evoke
admiration, wonder, and occasionally shock; however, Ferenc Puskás, the
unbeatable member of Hungary's unbeatable Best Eleven, above all struck
fear in his opponents. According to the largest British conservative paper,
in team sports there has never been a single player who, even in his prime,
attained such heights as he.
English and the Pudgy Little Bloke
recalled that, before the famous 6-3 match in London, England's Eleven
Best only ridiculed "the State-subsidised Communist amateurs" and simply
referred to Puskás as "that pudgy little bloke", even though the
Hungarians were already Olympic champions and had been unbeaten for three
According to The Daily Telegraph, when we say in reference to exceptional
talents that we will never see their like again, in many cases it proves
to be false; whereas, in Puskás's case, it turns out to be true.
His Legend Lives On
Saturday, The Sun, the British paper with the highest circulation,
released an article entitled "Greatest Left-footer of All Time", in praise
of the Hungarian footballer who had died the previous day. Jimmy Greaves,
football expert for The Sun and one-time forward for Chelsea and England's
Eleven Best, wrote, "We must erase this word legend from the sports
dictionary, because after the loss of real legends, it appears altogether
impossible to replace them."
The tribute piece in The Sun concluded, "Puskás's death is a tragedy in
this sense, too. His own memories fell victim to the ravages of
Alzheimer's Disease. Luckily, however, his legend lives on, and football
is obliged to safeguard it."
Cannot Celebrate Cannavaro's Golden Ball
Calderon, President of Real Madrid, substantiated the Italian and Spanish
press releases, according to which Fabio Cannavaro, the club's world
champion player, had won this year's Golden Ball.
"I know, however, that Fabio cannot wholeheartedly celebrate, even though
he has earned this honour. My joy is also overshadowed by Fernc Puskás's
death on Friday," announced the leader of the King's Guard, who is also a
member of the Tribute Committee assembled to commemorate the Golden Team's
After Robert Baggio (1993), Paolo Rossi (1982), and Cannavaro Gianni
Rivera (1969), who played for Parma and Juventus, this may be the fourth
Italian to win the award established by French Football magazine. The
official result will be made know 27 November.