In our regular Sunday feature, FIFA.com presents you with some of the biggest names in football who will be celebrating their birthdays over the coming week.
13. Raymond Kopa (82) is a living legend of French football, having taken part in two FIFA World Cup™ campaigns with Les Bleus, Switzerland 1954 and Sweden 1958, finishing third at the latter tournament. At club level, the dynamic attacking midfielder won four French League titles and a second division crown with Reims. He also earned a runners-up medal in the UEFA European Cup final in 1956, where the side from northern France lost to Real Madrid, the club that he would subsequently join. The French international would go on to secure three European Cups and two Liga titles with Los Blancos. After three productive years in the Spanish capital, he returned to Reims, where he spent the remaining eight seasons of his career. Kopa was also the first French player to receive the European Footballer of the Year award.
14. Karen Bardsley (29) has established herself as England’s first-choice goalkeeper in recent years, helping her team-mates reach the quarter-finals of the FIFA Women’s World Cup Germany 2011™. Last year, the California-born shot-stopper participated in the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament at London 2012. Bardsley initially turned out for teams in the Los Angeles area, such as Ajax America and Pali Blues, before moving to New Jersey-based Sky Blue. After joining Swedish outfit Linkopings, she put pen to paper with current club Lincoln Ladies in England.
15. David Trezeguet (36) enjoyed great success with France over a ten-year period, lifting the World Cup in 1998 and scoring the ‘Golden Goal’ in the final of UEFA EURO 2000. The free-scoring forward was also involved in less fruitful experiences, such as Les Bleus’ Korea/Japan 2002 campaign, and their defeat on penalties by Italy in the Final of Germany 2006, during which he suffered the misfortune of missing one of his side’s spot kicks. In addition, he participated in the 1997 FIFA U-20 World Cup and EURO 2004, where the French were eliminated by eventual winners Greece at the quarter-final stage. ‘Trezegol’ began his career at Argentinian outfit Platense, before exporting his striking abilities to Monaco, where he landed two French League titles and a Trophée des Champions. His fine performances piqued the interest of Juventus, who committed significant resources in order to acquire his services. During his time in Turin, Trezeguet scooped two Serie A titles, a Serie B crown and two Italian Super Cups, and finished top of the Italian scoring charts. He subsequently played for Hercules in Spain and Baniyas in the United Arab Emirates, but returned to his homeland last year to join his boyhood heroes, River Plate. Los Millonarios, inspired by the Frenchman’s goals, went on to win the second division and return to the forefront of the Argentinian game.
16. Stefan Reuter (47) was part of one of German football’s greatest generations, one that virtually ruled the game in the early to mid-1990s, winning the 1990 World Cup and EURO 1996, as well as reaching the final of EURO 1992 and the quarter-finals of France 1998. As a younger man, the defender triumphed at the UEFA European U-16 Championship. Reuter turned professional at Nuremberg, but it was with Bayern Munich that he rose to prominence, clinching two German Championships and a German Super Cup. Following a season-long stint with Juventus, he committed himself to Borussia Dortmund, with whom he claimed three Bundesliga titles, two German Super Cups, a UEFA Champions League crown and an Intercontinental Cup.
17. Sarah Bouhaddi (27) performed with distinction between the sticks for France’s women’s team during the 2012 Women’s Olympic Football Tournament in London, where Les Bleues finished in fourth place. She has also competed in the last three UEFA Women’s EURO competitions and at the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup. A product of France’s national acadamy at Clairefontaine, she played for Toulouse and Juvisy before signing for Lyon. Her move coincided with a highly successful period for the French giants, as Bouhaddi earned winners’ medals in three Division 1 campaigns, a French Cup final and two UEFA Women’s Champions League tournaments.
18. Julio Olarticoechea (55) appeared at two successive World Cups with the Argentinian national side. At Mexico 1986, he played in every one of his team’s matches and held aloft the coveted trophy, while at Italy 1990 he had to content himself with a runners-up medal. The robust defender spent the majority of his career in Argentina, where he defended the colours of Racing Club, River Plate, Boca Juniors, Argentinos Juniors and Deportivo Mandiyu. Olarticoechea did venture abroad for one season, performing in France’s top flight with Nantes.
19. Erwin Sanchez (44) helped Bolivia to return to the World Cup stage in 1994, and scored their only goal of the tournament against Spain in a 3-1 loss. The lively attacking midfielder reached the final of the Copa America in 1997, but could not prevent his team-mates from succumbing to defeat against Brazil. He also played in the 1999 edition of the continental contest with La Verde, as well as the FIFA Confederations Cup later that same year. The Santa Cruz-born international started off at Destroyers and Bolivar, with whom he won the Bolivian League. After packing his bags for Portugal, he pulled on the jersey of Benfica, where he won the national championship. Sanchez also represented Estoril, lifting the Portuguese Cup, and Boavista, where he sealed another Portuguese League title. He then returned to Bolivia to see out the remainder of his career with Santa Cruz-based Oriente Petrolero. A move into coaching saw him later take the reins of the Bolivian national team, Boavista and Oriente Petrolero.