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Danny Bergara
Personal information
Full name Daniel Alberto Bergara de Medina
Date of birth July 24, 1942
Place of birth    Montevideo, Uruguay
Date of death    July 25, 2007 (aged 65)
Place of death    England
Playing position Striker
Senior career1
Years Club App (Gls)*
1958-1962
1962-1967
1967-1971
1971-1972
Racing Club
Real Mallorca
Sevilla
Tenerife
0? (?)
31 (14)
95 (36)
0? (?)   
Teams managed
19??-19??
1988-1989
1989-1995
1996-1997
1997
1998
Brunei
Rochdale
Stockport County
Rotherham United
Doncaster Rovers
Grantham Town

1 Senior club appearances and goals
counted for the domestic league only.
* Appearances (Goals)

Daniel Alberto "Danny" Bergara de Medina (July 24, 1942 – July 25, 2007)[1] was a Uruguayan footballer and manager.

Contents

Playing career

Born in Montevideo, Uruguay, Bergara began his playing career at the age of 16, playing for Racing Club in the Uruguayan First Division, picking up a handful of under-21 caps for Uruguay, before moving to Spain in 1962 where he was top scorer for Real Mallorca for four seasons and Sevilla for two seasons. While playing in Spain Bergara married an English travel guide, and when he retired from playing football they moved to England.

Managerial career

Bergara coached the reserve teams at Luton Town and Sheffield United before getting his first managerial job at Rochdale in August 1988. Bergara is often wrongly referred to as the first foreign manager in English football – he was in fact preceded by managers such as the South African Peter Hauser, who managed Chester City between 1963 and 1968 – but he is believed to be the first Football League manager who did not speak English as a first language.[2] He was also the first manager born outside the British Isles to lead an English club out at Wembley, when he took Stockport County to the 1992 Autoglass Trophy final.

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Stockport County

In March 1989, after just seven months at Rochdale, he took over as manager of Stockport County. He ensured their Fourth Division survival that season and prevented them from slipping into the GM Vauxhall Conference. They reached the playoffs in 1989-90, only to suffer a heavy defeat by Chesterfield in the semi-final. In 1990-91 he guided County to promotion from the Fourth-Division, missing out on the title by a single point. In 1991-92, County took the Third Division by storm beating Swansea City 5-0 on the opening day, County reached Wembley twice in the space of 10 days in the Play-Offs and Autoglass Trophy, losing 2-1 to Peterborough United in the play-offs and 1-0 to Stoke City in the Football League Trophy.

1992-93 brought a similar season for Bergara and Stockport County. The club lost in the Semi-Final play-off 2-1 to Port Vale. Stockport County lost to the same opponents in the Autoglass Trophy Final, 2-1.

1993-94 was his last full-season in charge of The Hatters another trip to Wembley losing to Burnley 2-1 again, referee David Elleray controversially sending off two Stockport players Mike Wallace and Chris Beaumont. The only time the same side has ever had two players sent of at Wembley.

Just before the end of the 1994-95, Bergara stepped down as Stockport manager and handed over the reins to coach Dave Jones

Just 306 days after his passing, County put on a brilliant tribute to the man, beating another of his former clubs Rochdale 3-2 at Wembley, a place Danny never managed to win in four attempts, with goals from Liam Dickinson, Anthony Pilkington and an own-goal by Rochdale's Nathan Stanton.

After his death County fans sung Danny Bergara's Blue and White army in his tribute.

Later career

Bergara also managed the Brunei National team and the England Under-18 and Under-20 sides, with a World Youth Cup win also to his name.

Shortly after leaving Stockport, Bergara joined Sheffield Wednesday as assistant to new manager David Pleat, but after one season departed to become manager of Rotherham United,

A brief spell at Doncaster Rovers followed, during which time the club were featured in a Channel 4 'fly-on-the-wall' documentary.

For the 1998-99 season, he was named manager of Grantham Town, who had just won promotion to the Southern League Premier Division. A string of poor results saw Bergara become the club's Director of Football and the club's Chief Scout, Tony Kenworthy, becoming manager. Later he scouted for Sunderland.

Death

Bergara died after a short illness on July 25, 2007, one day after his 65th birthday. Following the news of his death, many Stockport County fans left their tributes in Edgeley Park's Cheadle End. On July 28, 2007 Stockport County arranged "Danny Day" when the team played Cardiff City in a pre-season friendly.

In an emotionally charged atmosphere, before kick off a powerful and hearty rendition of "My Way" by Frank Sinatra was played at Edgeley Park as it was Danny's favourite song. Managers of both teams, Jim Gannon (Stockport) and Dave Jones (Cardiff City; and ironically the man who had succeeded Bergara as Stockport manager 12 years earlier) paid their tributes by laying down a bunch of flowers which spelt 'DANNY' in front of his beloved Cheadle End.

Before the match there was a specially designated two minutes for the fans to sing a rendition of "Danny Bergara's Blue 'n White Army", which ended up continuing for over half-an-hour. Stockport won the spectacular friendly 6-4.

External links

References

  1. ^ El camino de "Danny" (Spanish)
  2. ^ Opening the way for Wenger and Mourinho The Observer March 5, 2006



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