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Greats Of The Game | Raúl, Striker

Raúl is considered one of the most important players in the history of Real Madrid, and regarded as one of the greatest Spanish players of all time.

Raúl was born in the San Cristóbal de los Ángeles neighborhood of Madrid where he played for the local youth team before moving to the Atlético Madrid youth team. He later moved to Real Madrid’s youth academy and played at its various levels. In 1994, he signed his first professional contract with the fourth division team Real Madrid C and then was swiftly promoted to the first division team.

He spent 16 years of his career playing for Real Madrid and is the club’s second all-time top goalscorer with 323 goalsRaúl is also the most capped player in the history of the club with 741 appearances, ahead of Sanchís. With Los Blancos, he won six La Liga titles, three UEFA Champions League titles, scoring in two finals, four Supercopa de España titles, one UEFA Super Cup and two Intercontinental Cup. He is the third highest goalscorer in Champions League history, behind Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, and the fifth most capped player. In 2003, he was appointed captain of the team and retained that position until his departure from the club in 2010.

In La Liga competitions, Raúl is the fifth highest goalscorer in the history of the tournament with 228 goals, behind Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Telmo Zarra and fellow Real Madrid legend Hugo Sánchez. He is also the highest Spanish scorer in European leagues, with 256 goals, scoring 228 goals in La Liga and 28 goals in the Bundesliga. Moreover, he is the second most capped player in the history of the Spanish competition, with 550 games played, just behind Andoni Zubizarreta (622 games). Leaving Real Madrid in 2010 and signing for Schalke 04, he scored the 400th goal of his career in February 2012. He signed with the Qatari team Al Sadd in 2012. He won the Qatar Stars League in his first season and he reached 1,000 games played in his career; he is one of only 18 players to have achieved this landmark.

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