25 Şubat 2008 Pazartesi

Gheorghe Hagi

Gheorghe Hagi (born February 5 1965 in Sacele,
Constanta|Săcele, Constanta
(county)|Constanţa County) is a Romanian
football (soccer)|football player who played for
the Romania national football team|Romanian
national team in three Football World Cup|World
Cups. Nicknamed The Diego Maradona|Maradona of the
Carpathians, he is a hero in his homeland. He has
won his country's Player of the Year award a
record six times, and was recently named Romania's
player of the century.

During the Football World Cup 1994|1994 World Cup,
Hagi made highlights by scoring vital goals for
Romania, including a 35 meter lob against Colombia
national football team|Colombia. Having played for
Farul Constanta|Constanţa (1979/1980 and
1982/83), Luceafărul Bucharest (1980/1982),
Sportul Studenţesc (1983/1986), Steaua
Bucharest (1986/1990), Real Madrid (1990/1992),
Brescia (1992/1994) and FC Barcelona (1994/1996),
Hagi then joined Galatasaray, the Turkey|Turkish
club team that captured the UEFA Cup title in
2000. Prior to his third retirement in 2001, he
won 125 international caps, scoring 35 goals.

Hagi has since returned to football
(soccer)|football as a coach. He became the head
coach of the Romanian national team in 2001,
although he only lasted six months as the team
failed to qualify for the Football World Cup
2002|2002 World Cup. He then took over as coach of
Turkish first division side Bursaspor but left
that club after a disappointing start to the

After a 18 month hiatus spent running a coastal
Black Sea hotel and appearing in television
commercials, he then returned to club management
at the helm of the club at which he won his first
European trophy, Galatasaray. He resigned from
this position, on May 30 2005, at the end of his
first season in the role. For many Galatasaray
fans, a third place finish in the League (and
therefore missing out on a prestigious berth in
the 2005/2006 UEFA Champions League competition)
was highly disappointing, despite the club's
success in the Turkish Cup.

Hagi is ethnically Aromanian. In March 2004, he
was named among the FIFA 100|top 125 living
footballers by Pelé. Hagi is Adrian Mutu and
Alexandra Mutu's godfather.

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