In our new series, we take a look back at the career of Dani Guiza, who sensationally won the Pichichi trophy in the 2007/2008 season.
Guiza began his playing days like any other kid in Spain – on the streets. Playing in the suburns of his hometown Jerez de la Frontera in Cadiz, the youngster is famously known for being unwilling to run in training, hiding behind trees during the sessions.
After time spent under his boyhood idol Kiko, who played for Cadiz – Guiza was spotted and moved to Xerez CD, before a move to Segunda Division B side Dos Hermamas.
Mallorca would then hand him a La Liga debut at the age of 19, but he would failed to perform and was sent to the reserve side and ultimately spent time in the lower leagues.
Consistent goalscoring for Murcia would then give him the breakthrough he needed as former Real Madrid boss Bernd Schuster took a chance and signed him for Getafe in the 2005/2006 season.
Guiza would take that chance and score 27 goals in 70 games before he returned to Mallorca to make his presence felt in the first team, arguably having his most successful season in football, winning the Pichichi trophy with 27 goals in 37 games, all of which came from open play.
His form saw Turkish side Fenerbahce make a move and offer him a lucrative deal, which proved too tempting and he spent three years at the club, scoring 35 goals before a move back to Getafe.
Since then however, Guiza has spent time in Malaysia, Paraguay and most recently – in the Spanish third division with Atlético Sanluqueño.
Yet to retire officialy, Guiza is very much seen as a journeyman but his time in Spain’s top flight is still fondly remembered, especially by those linked to Getafe and Mallorca.
Former Mallorca coach Gregorio Manzano once said: “In 24 years of coaching I’ve never had the winner of the Pichichi in my team. Dani is the top goalscorer in our league, and deserves extra credit for doing it without taking penalties, and he is also worthy of selection to Euro 2008”
The highest praise for Guiza given during his playing career and one that is thoroughly deserved.