Zbigniew Boniek

Zbigniew Boniek

Zbigniew "Zibì" Kazimierz Boniek (; born 3 March 1956 in Bydgoszcz) is a former Polish footballer and coach. He first played at Zawisza Bydgoszcz and later at Widzew Łódź. Boniek was named by Pelé as one of the 125 Greatest Living Footballers and by FIFA as one of the 100 best-ever players. On 12 October 2009 he received a Golden Foot career award.

Boniek was transferred to Italian football giants Juventus in 1982. That same year he won a bronze medal (third place) as part of the Polish team at the 1982 FIFA World Cup. With Juventus he won the Cup Winners' Cup and the European Super Cup in 1984 (scoring in the final of the former) and the European Cup in 1985.

Boniek represented Poland in 80 internationals and scored 24 goals. After finishing his professional career at A.S. Roma in 1988 he had a successful business career.

As a player, Boniek was known for his blistering pace and acceleration. He was one of the best dribblers of his time and also displayed superb technique.

The Juventus president Gianni Agnelli nicknamed him Bello di notte ("Beauty at night") because of his performance at evening matches.

Boniek has also coached in Italy, with stints at Lecce in 1990–91, Bari in 1991–92, Sambenedettese in 1992–93, and Avellino in 1994–96.

Lately, Boniek has served as vice-president of the Polish Football Association, and in July 2002 he accepted a nomination for the post of the main coach of the Polish national team. He resigned in December 2002 after just five matches (2 wins, 1 draw, 2 defeats, including a 0:1 debacle at home against Latvia in a European Championship qualifier).

According to reports back in Poland, Boniek had been favored to become the new Minister of Sport for his country, but he denied the claims and stated that he had no intention of taking up the job.

On 26 October 2012 he became the chairman of the Polish Football Association.

Read more about Zbigniew Boniek:  Statistics, Civil Awards