Real Madrid is arguably the most successful club in football. A club with rich history like Real Madrid is full of elite players who have represented the badge with honour and pride. From Alfredo Di Stefano to Cristiano Ronaldo, this club has always been able to produce elite players who have made their name known in football history. But there were some players who were under appreciated.
Jose Maria Gutierrez Hernandez, popularly known as Guti, spent almost his entire career representing Real Madrid.
Guti represented the Spanish giants for over a decade and half. As a part of the famous Galacticos side, he won 15 major trophies including 5 La Liga and 3 UEFA Champions League titles.
He started his footballing career as a striker but had to change his position to midfield to replace Clarence Seedorf. In his early days at the core of midfield he struggled a lot and he seemed so frustrated at times that he was sent off on multiple occasions. He returned to his preferred position for a while but due to arrival of the great Ronaldo De Lima, he was again used as a midfielder. He shared the role of main playmaker with Zinedine Zidane and learned a lot. After the departure of Zidane, his vision and passing range improved drastically as he was given the role of chief playmaker of the team.
Due to his ability of passing and great vision he would have thrived in modern day football.
Also, when Real Madrid won the La liga in 2006-07, he played an important role and contributed with some crucial goals.
After the arrival of Karim Benzema, Kaka, Xabi Alonso and Cristiano Ronaldo, Guti often started at the bench as he was getting older. Things became a lot worse as he had some disagreements with the head coach at that time, Manual Pelligrini, as he was out of the team for a long period of time. Eventually, he made a comeback to the starting XI when Kaka struggled in the midfield position.
The Spanish Giants landed the treble winning coach with Inter Milan Jose Mourinho in 2010. Guti and Raul were released by the club in 2010. They were not a part of Jose Mourinho’s plan as he thought the two veterans were a surplus to the team.
Guti was a loved by the fans at the Bernabue. He might not be as talented as the likes of Beckham, Zidane or Figo but he had the ability to start for any top club at that time. His passion, commitment and devotion towards the club made him what he is today. He played every match like it was his last. His unparalleled passion for the club made him lovable among the fans.
“I’m going to train to become a sporting director or a coach and I’d like to train youngsters… I’d really like to coach the Real Madrid youth team. That’s my dream.”
He may not have retired at his boyhood club but he will always remain a known figure among the fans at the Bernabue.
Guti announced his retirement from football on 21 September, 2012 after pursuing his Real service with a statement.