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Five footballers who passed away in 2013

Srihari
Sport. Football. January 1963. Brazilian international Nilton Santos stands alongside some of his medals and trophies accumulated in a long career. He had a long international career for Brazil playing in the 1954, 1958 and 1962 World Cups and was a membe

Djalma Santos

Sport. Football. Circa 1965. A portrait of Djalma Samtos of Brazil.

A double World Cup winner and one of only two players to be included into three FIFA World Cup All Star teams, Djalma Santos certainly had an international career that most can only dream of. He started his career in his hometown with Portuguesa as a center back, before moving onto the right side. He was defensively solid and his attacking forays, although sporadic, were spot on, every time they occurred. Having made over 400 games for the club, whilst several trophies, including his first World Cup, he moved to Palmeiras in 1959.

At Palmeiras, he merely continued his good work as he became one of the finest right backs of all time, and played almost 500 games for the club. After almost a decade, he moved to Atlético Paranaense for a short spell before retiring in 1970. Known for his defensive ability, Santos was unique, in the fact that, although he played over 950 club games and represented his country 98 times, he was never sent off during his entire career and that speaks volumes for his powers of concentration.

Some other notable mentions, who just didn’t make the cut.

Ron Davies Born 25 May 1942 in Holywell, Wales. Died 24 May

A phenomenal header of the ball, Ron Davies played as a center forward and made a name for himself at Southampton. The Welshman scored 12 goals in his first 10 games and finished as the Division’s top goal scorer in his first two seasons with the Saints.

Dave Hickson Born 30 October 1929 in Salford. Died 8 July

The Englishman is one of only three players to have played for all three Merseyside side clubs- Everton, Liverpool and Tranmere. He went down in Toffees folklore when he came back in the second half to score the winner in the Fifth round of 1953 FA Cup against Manchester United after a huge gash above his eye.

Christian Benitez Born 1 May 1985 in Quito, Ecuador. Died 29 July

Affectionately nicknamed “Chucho”, the diminutive striker went onto play for some of the finest clubs in both his home country and Mexico before playing his final match for Qatari club El Jaish. Internationally, he already made 58 appearances and scored 24 goals and on the wake of his death, the Ecuadorian FA announced that they will retire the No.11 jersey.

Heinz Flohe Born 28 January 1948 in Euskirchen, Germany. Died 15 June

A World Cup winner with West Germany in 1974, the midfielder from Euskirchen was a key member of the squad, and also went onto play in Euro 76 and the World Cup two years later. Domestically, he made a name for himself at 1. FC Köln, where he won the Bundesliga once in 1978, and the DFB-Pokal thrice. He passed away in his sleep after slipping into a coma in 2010.

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