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SOS Children mourns Ferenc Puskas

Nov 17, 2006 12:00 PM
Ferenc Puskas with SOS child
Ferenc Puskas with SOS child

Ferenc Puskas, the Hungarian international footballer and FIFA/SOS Ambassador, has died aged 79 in his hometown of Budapest.

Puskas was part of the all conquering Mighty Magyars team, that went unbeaten for 32 games, a run which saw the Hungarians become Olympic champions in 1952 and one which has never been matched. The incredible striker notched up 84 goals in his 85 games for his country, and was aptly named the Galloping Major.

Following the 1956 revolution in Hungary, Puskas moved to Spain and became an important member of the successful Real Madrid side of the 1960s, scoring seven goals in two European Cup finals. He also represented the Spanish national side four times, including the 1962 World Cup. After retiring from playing, he took up coaching and in 1971 won the European Cup with Panathanikos.

In 1998, Puskas joined forces with SOS Children’s Villages, becoming one of the first ever FIFA/SOS Ambassadors. Since then he has been a dedicated supporter of the charity’s work in his home country. He will be greatly missed.

SOS Children is not political and sponsored children are brought up in their own religion and culture.