Thursday, September 11, 2014

Luis Suarez of Barcelona FC is named Miramontes

For the younger generations, Luis Suarez of Barcelona was a Uruguayan forward who also played for Liverpool.   They probably never heard of Luis Suarez Miramontes, the Barcelona's midfield general playing in the 1950's. 
     The original Luis Suarez was probably one of Barcelona's greatest players.  He was the "Xavi" of his time.  He joined the club in 1954 from Deportivo La Coruna. Along with László Kubala, Zoltán Czibor, Sándor Kocsis, Ramallets and Evaristo, Barcelona of 1950's was considered one of the most glorious period in its history.  They won a La Liga/Copa del Generalísimo double in 1959 and a La Liga/Fairs Cup double in 1960 . Luis Suarez was crowned European Player of the Year in 1960, the first Spanish player to win the award.  In 1961, they beat Real Madrid in the first round of the European Cup.  It was Real Madrid's first ever defeat in the completion.  It marked the end of an era for the great Real Madrid side of the 1950's.  However, it did not give the Catalan side their first ever European Cup glory.  They lost to Benfica in the Final.  Benfica would win its second European Cup a year later and replaced Real Madrid as the king of Europe.  Meanwhile, Barcelona was hit with financial crisis.  They sold Luis Suarez for a world record transfer fees to Inter Milan shortly after the 1961 European Cup Final.  
       At Inter Milan, he was reunited with manager Helenio Herrera. The team would become known as "La Grande Inter".  Herrera would modify the Catenaccio system into his own style.  He would use a libero at the back so that his leftback Giacinto Facchetti could have the freedom to attack on the wing.  Luis Suarez was transformed into a deep lying playmaker and served as the main organizer on the team.  Inter Milan would win back-to-back European Cups in 1964 and 1965. 

          For the national team, Luis Suarez went to the World Cup in 1962; also playing under Helenio Herrera.  The team was famous for its foreign contingency that included Ferenc Puskas, Jose Santamaria and Alfredo Di Stefano, but failed to perform on the field.  Two years later, Luis Suaraez won the European Championship with Spain on home soil by beating the Soviet Union.  The Final was marked as a battle of ideologies.  Spain was under Franco's right wing government in 1964.  Spain would not win an international trophy for another 44 years.

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