Cesare Maldini

Biographical information

Full nameCesare•Maldini
Used nameCesare•Maldini
Born5 February 1932 in Trieste, Trieste (ITA)
Died3 April 2016 in Milano, Milano (ITA)
NOC Italy


Cesare Maldini made his Serie A début with Triestina in 1954, having joined the club as a youngster. He then moved at AC Milan and went on to become one of the finest defenders in Italy in the late-1950s/early-60s. He won four League titles with Milan in 1955, 1957, 1959, and 1962 and, at Wembley in 1963, he had the honour of being the first captain of an Italian team to hold aloft the European Cup (now Champions’ League) after beating Benfica 2-1. Maldini left Milan after 347 matches and three goals, and ended his career in the 1966/67 season with Torino.

Maldini won 14 international caps for Italy between 1960-63, including two matches in the 1962 FIFA World Cup in Chile. He captained the national team on six occasions, with his last cap earned in a 2-0 defeat by the Soviet Union in 1964, in a European Championship qualifier.

After retiring from playing, Maldini turned to coaching and, after a spell as assistant manager to Nero Rocco at Milan, he took charge in 1972. In his two years at the helm, he led them to European Cup-winners’ Cup and Italian Cup victories, both in 1973. Maldini left Milan in 1974 and then had spells at Foggia, Ternana and Parma before taking up the post of assistant to Italy’s team manager Enzo Bearzot in 1980, and together they won the World Cup in Spain in 1982. Maldini took charge of the under-21 team from 1986-96 and guided them to three successive European Championship wins (1992, 1994 and 1996), and to two Olympics (1992 and 1996). He was appointed national team manager in 1996 after the sudden resignation of Arrigo Sacchi, but he also quit after the 1998 World Cup after much criticism from the media, despite not losing a match, when Italy went out in the quarter-final, losing to France on penalty kicks.

Maldini returned to Milan before taking charge of the Paraguay national team, leading them to the World Cup final stages in South Korea / Japan in 2002, and at the age of 70 was then the oldest World Cup coach. He resigned his position after Germany defeated Paraguay in the round of 16.

Maldini died in 2016 at his home in Milano and, that same day, all matches in Serie A observed a moment of silence in his honor. Shortly after his death, a park close to Milano’s Giuseppe Meazza stadium was jointly named in memory of Cesare Maldini and Giacinto Facchetti. One of Maldini’s sons, Paolo, played for AC Milan 647 times and won 126 senior Italian caps.

Coaching results

Games Sport (Discipline) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1992 Summer Olympics Football (Football) ITA Cesare Maldini
Football, Men (Olympic) Italy 7
1996 Summer Olympics Football (Football) ITA Cesare Maldini
Football, Men (Olympic) Italy 12