Fernando Hierro started his career at Valladolid, but is best remembered for his 14 year Real Madrid career.
After making his Spanish debut in a 1-0 win over Poland, Hierrp signed for Los Merengues under John Toshack and quickly became a fan favourite with strong defensive displays and a knack of scoring important goals. He helped Real Madrid to La Liga title in 1990 and scored the first of 29 international goals against Albania in 1990; a record only bettered by Raul and David Villa.
Known for his effectiveness at both ends of the pitch, Hierro managed double figure goalscoring statistics between 1992 and 1994, including a remarkable return of 21 in his third full season. A second La Liga title followed in 1995, and Hierro played a pivotal part in Spain's European Championship run of 1996.
Following a third La Liga title in 1997, Real Madrid reached the final of the Champions League the following season. Real defeated Bayer Leverkusen, holders Borussia Dortmund and Juventus in the final to claim their first European Cup since the glory days of the 1960s. Predrag Mijatovic scored the only goal of the game.
Two years later and Hierro would again take part in a Champions League final, this time against Valencia. Real were comfortable 3-0 winners thanks to goals by Fernando Morientes, Steve McManaman and Raul.
A fourth La Liga title in 2001 allowed Real and Hierro another shot at Champions League glory. Having negotiated Bayern Munich and Barcelona, Real saw off Bayer Leverkusen thanks to a Raul goal, and one of the all time great strikes by Zinedine Zidane. Hierro captained the side in his third Champions League title.
A final La Liga title in 2003 followed, before a season at Al Rayyan and a highly successful term at Sam Allardyce's Bolton Wanderers.
Hierro earned 89 caps for his country, and captained Spain at both the 1998 and 2002 World Cups.
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