Franz Beckenbauer Biography

(One of the Greatest Football Players in the History of the Sport)

Birthday: September 11, 1945 (Virgo)

Born In: Munich, Germany

Franz Anton Beckenbauer was a German former professional footballer and football administrator. He helped Germany win almost every major international trophy throughout his glittering career as one of the world’s leading footballers. He started off as a left winger but in his early years at Bayern Munich he created the position of ‘attacking sweeper’ for himself that completely changed the way Germany and Bayern Munich played. Beckenbauer captained Bayern Munich to three consecutive titles and also helped them win three European Cup trophies from 1974 to 1976. He was the captain and inspiration when West Germany won the World Cup in front of their own fans in 1974 and 16 years later he was the manager when a unified Germany won the World Cup in Italy after edging out the Diego Maradona-led Argentina. Beckhenbauer was also awarded the European Player of the Year award twice in his career and post his managerial days he has served as one of the top officials on Bayern Munich’s advisory and oversaw one of the most successful phases in the club’s history. He played an important role in bringing the World Cup to Germany in 2006.

Quick Facts

German Celebrities Born In September

Nick Name: Der Kaiser

Also Known As: Franz Anton Beckenbauer

Died At Age: 78


Spouse/Ex-: Brigitte Beckenbauer, Heidi Burmester, Sybille Beckenbauer

father: Franz Beckenbauer Sr.

mother: Antonie Beckenbauer

siblings: Walter Beckenbauer

children: Francessca Beckenbauer, Michael Beckenbauer, Noel Beckenbauer, Stephan Beckenbauer, Thomas Beckenbauer

Born Country: Germany

Football Players German Men

Height: 5'11" (180 cm), 5'11" Males

Died on: January 7, 2024

place of death: Salzburg, Austria

City: Munich, Germany

  • 1

    What position did Franz Beckenbauer play?

    Franz Beckenbauer primarily played as a sweeper or central defender during his career.

  • 2

    Which club did Franz Beckenbauer spend the majority of his playing career at?

    Franz Beckenbauer spent the majority of his playing career at Bayern Munich, where he achieved great success.

  • 3

    What was Franz Beckenbauer's nickname during his playing days?

    Franz Beckenbauer was commonly known as "Der Kaiser" during his playing days.

  • 4

    How many World Cup titles did Franz Beckenbauer win as a player?

    Franz Beckenbauer won the FIFA World Cup as a player with West Germany in 1974.

  • 5

    Did Franz Beckenbauer have a successful coaching career after retiring as a player?

    Yes, Franz Beckenbauer had a successful coaching career, including leading Germany to victory in the 1990 FIFA World Cup as the team's manager.

Childhood & Early Life
Franz Anton Beckenbauer was born on 11 September, 1945 in Munich, Germany to Franz Beckenbauer Senior and Anotnia Beckenbauer. His father worked in the postal services and discouraged him from playing football probably because of the economic condition of the country right after the Second World War.
He was a keen footballer right from the time when he was a child and in 1954 when he was only nine years old he started playing at SC Munich. He played for their youth team and excelled in his role as a forward during those years.
He was determined to join Munich, the club he supported since his childhood but after a fight with a player from the club in a youth level game, he knew that he could no longer do so and in 1959 he joined the youth ranks at Bayern Munich.
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After spending a few seasons with the youth team, Franz Beckenbauer made his debut for Bayern Munich senior team in the year 1964 and at the end of that season the team advanced from the 2nd division to the first division known as the ‘Bundesliga’. Two years later he represented West Germany at the World Cup in England and Beckenbauer lit up the tournament with 4 goals as his team ended as runners up.

Following his excellent show as a left winger, Beckenbauer started playing in the role of an attacking sweeper that became a unique role and he used it to devastating effect during his career. He was made the captain of Bayern Munich in 1968 and the club duly won the league title at the end of the season.

His tenure as captain of Bayern Munich brought unprecedented success for the club. The club won three straight league titles from 1972 onwards and it was during the same period that he led them to three straight European Cup victories. Beckenbauer scored 64 goals in total in 439 appearances for Bayern Munich and became known as ‘Der Kaiser’ or ‘the emperor’.

In the 1970 World Cup, he scored the all important goal in the second round game against England to spark an improbable comeback but West Germany were knocked out at the semi final stage. Two years later, he captained West Germany in a triumphant European Championships campaign.

In 1974, he led West Germany to their 2nd World Cup title by winning the final against firm favourites Netherlands in the final at Munich. He devised the strategy of constantly shadowing Netherland’s Johann Cryuff and it paid off in the big game. Two years later he led Germany to a runner up finish at the European Championships and the following year he retired from international football. Beckenbauer had scored 14 goals in 103 appearances for West Germany.

He left Bayern Munich for the New York Cosmos in the year 1977 and after representing them for four seasons he moved back to Germany with Hamburger SV. He played for two seasons at Hamburger SV and retired after winning the league in his last season.

In 1984, he was made the manager of West Germany. In the 1986 Mexico World Cup, under his stewardship, West German team reached finals but lost to Argentina. 

In the 1990 World Cup held in Italy, he managed the unified German side that beat Argentina 1-0 in the final. He has the rare distinction of winning the World Cup for his country both as a player and manager. Following the World Cup win, Beckenbauer managed French club Olympique de Marseille for a few months.

Bayern Munich appointed him as an interim manager in 1993 and he steered them to a league title at the end of the season. Three years later, the club appointed him as a stop gap option yet again and that time he guided them to the UEFA Cup.

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In 1994, he became the vice president at Bayern Munich and has remained as the chairman of the advisory board till date after the club turned into a company. Four years late he became the vice president of German Football Association and helped the country in its bid to host the World Cup.

Awards & Achievements

Franz Beckenbauer won the ‘European Player of the Year Award’ in 1972 and won it again four years later.

In 2013, World Soccer magazine included Franz Beckenbauer in the ‘Greatest XI of All Time’.

Franz Beckenbauer’s biggest achievement as a footballer was that of the captain of the West German side that won the 1974 World Cup on home soil. However, his biggest achievement in life has to be that of managing the unified German national team in their triumphant 1990 World Cup campaign.

Personal Life & Legacy

Franz Beckenbauer got married to Brigitte in the year 1966 but the marriage ended 24 years later. They had two sons - Michael and Stephen. Stephen became a footballer but died after suffering from an illness.

In 1990 Beckenbauer got married to Sybille but this marriage too ended after 14 years. They had a son named Thomas.

In 2006, Franz Beckenbauer got married to Heidi Burmester. They had two children - Francessca and Noel.

Franz Beckenbauer had a cardiac surgery in 2016 and 2017. In 2018, he had an hip implant surgey. 

Franz Beckenbauer died on January 7, 2024, in Salzburg, Austria.

Facts About Franz Beckenbauer

Franz Beckenbauer became the first person to win the FIFA World Cup as both a player and a manager, achieving this feat in 1974 and 1990 respectively.

Beckenbauer was known for popularizing the "sweeper" position in football, revolutionizing defensive tactics in the sport.

Beckenbauer was a skilled pianist and has been known to entertain friends and family with his musical talents.

Beckenbauer was a dedicated philanthropist, supporting various charitable causes throughout his career and beyond.

See the events in life of Franz Beckenbauer in Chronological Order

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