Francisco Buyo

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Paco Buyo
Personal information
Full nameFrancisco Buyo Sánchez
Date of birth (1958-01-13) 13 January 1958 (age 63)
Place of birth Betanzos, Spain
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)
Position(s) Goalkeeper
Youth career
1972–1973 Ural
1973–1975 Betanzos
Senior career*
1975–1976 Mallorca 16 (0)
1976–1980 Deportivo La Coruña 122 (0)
1978–1979Huesca (loan)
1980–1986 Sevilla 199 (0)
1986–1997 Real Madrid 343 (0)
National team
1977 Spain U20 3 (0)
1977–1978 Spain U21 3 (0)
1979–1987 Spain U23 4 (0)
1979–1983 Spain amateur 11 (0)
1980 Spain B 1 (0)
1983–1992 Spain 7 (0)
Teams managed
1999–2000 Real Madrid C
2000–2001 Real Madrid B
2008 Jaén B
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Francisco "Paco" Buyo Sánchez (born 13 January 1958) is a Spanish former footballer who played as a goalkeeper.


Best known for his Sevilla and Real Madrid spells, Buyo appeared in 542 La Liga matches, third all-time highest at the time of his retirement, winning 12 major titles with the latter club.

For about one decade, Buyo was a backup on the Spain national team to two European Championships.

Club career

Buyo was born in Betanzos, A Coruña. At the age of fourteen he began playing football for local Ural CF, for which he appeared as both a goalkeeper and right winger during his one-year spell, achieving the feat of being both unbeaten between the goalposts and also the team's top goalscorer. [1]

Buyo's first professional club was RCD Mallorca, in the second division. After one season he joined Deportivo de La Coruña, where he would stay until 1980, with a loan to SD Huesca – while he performed military service in Jaca – in between. [1] He made his debuts in La Liga in the 1980–81 season with Sevilla FC, being the starting goalkeeper from the beginning; he played there six years, appearing in 242 official matches and winning his debut Spain national football team callup.

Buyo's performance at Sevilla made Real Madrid require his services, signing him in 1986 as a replacement for an ageing Miguel Ángel. In his first season he appeared in all 44 league games (the campaign featured a second stage), the first being a 3–1 win over Real Murcia, being instrumental to the Merengues' national title; he would remain in the capital club until his retirement in 1997, aged 39.

The local success Buyo met with Madrid (six leagues and two Copa del Rey) could not be translated into international accolades, as they kept being eliminated in European Cup competition. However, in his first season, he did have a memorable performance against Michel Platini's Juventus F.C. in the round-of-16 of the 1986–87 edition: after the Spaniards won 1–0 in the first leg and the Italians did the same in the second meeting, the winner was decided in a penalty shootout, won by the former after he saved two of the opposition's shots; [2] he earned his first Ricardo Zamora Trophy during his second league campaign after conceding only 23 goals in 35 league contests, and his second came in 1991–92 during which he played as many matches, with 27 goals against.

Madrid would win two more league titles with Buyo in goal, the first of which came in the 1994–95 season, during which he also had a streak of 709 minutes without conceding a goal in league play, between 3 December 1994 and 12 February 1995, [3] the fifth-longest streak ever in the Spanish league. In total, he kept 17 clean sheets throughout the course of the season. [4] In his final year the club won another league, but he did not feature at all, as he was only third-choice behind Bodo Illgner and Santiago Cañizares; [5] he retired with 542 first division games played, the third-most behind another goalkeeper, Andoni Zubizarreta, and Eusebio Sacristán.

International career

During Buyo's time at Deportivo, he was selected to the Spain under-21 team. He also represented the nation at the 1980 Summer Olympics, being eliminated in the first round.

At full international level, Buyo was capped seven times and was part of the squad that finished runner-up at the UEFA Euro 1984. His debut came on 21 December 1983 in the historical 12–1 trouncing of Malta for the qualifying stage, in a match played in Seville. [6]


After retiring, Buyo had a short coaching spell with youth clubs Real Madrid cadetes and Real Madrid C, only returning to the benches in 2008 with Real Jaén's reserves.

Additionally, he also worked with as a sports analyst in Al-Jazeera, contributing to its La Liga and UEFA Euro 2008 coverage.



Real Madrid




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  1. 1 2 Real Madrid fans biography (in Spanish)
  2. 1–0: Del infierno a la gloria (1–0: From hell to glory); Mundo Deportivo, 6 November 1986 (in Spanish)
  3. "The world's top division goalkeepers of all time with the longest time without conceding a goal"; at International Federation of Football History & Statistics
  4. "Athletic Bilbao 0-1 Real Madrid: Sergio Ramos sends Real closer to title". BBC Sport. 5 July 2020. Retrieved 5 July 2020.
  5. ...Y Buyo rompió su silencio (...And Buyo spoke his mind); ABC, 4 September 1996 (in Spanish)
  6. España, con 12 goles a Malta, alcanzó la fase final de la Eurocopa. (Spain, with 12 goals to Malta, reached European Championship finals.); El País, 22 December 1983 (in Spanish)