Manuel Estiarte

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Manuel Estiarte
Manel Estiarte (Diada de Sant Jordi 2009).jpg
Manuel Estiarte in 2009
Medal record
Men's water polo
Representing  Spain
Olympic Games
Gold medal – first place 1996 Atlanta Team competition
Silver medal – second place 1992 Barcelona Team competition
World Championships
Gold medal – first place 1998 Perth Team competition
Silver medal – second place 1991 Perth Team competition
Silver medal – second place 1994 Rome Team competition
World Cup
Bronze medal – third place 1985 Duisburg Team competition
Bronze medal – third place 1991 Barcelona Team competition
Bronze medal – third place 1999 Sydney Team competition
European Championship
Silver medal – second place 1991 Athens Team competition
Bronze medal – third place 1993 Sheffield Team competition

Manel Estiarte Duocastella (born October 26, 1961 in Manresa) is a Spanish former water polo player born in Manresa, a municipality in Barcelona, Spain. He is currently a member of Pep Guardiola’s technical staff at Manchester City FC.[1] Highly accomplished in his sport, Estiarte has been voted World’s Best Water Polo Player on seven consecutive occasions: 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, and 1992.


National team[edit]

Estiarte played for the national team for 23 years (between 1977 and 2000) and captained the side for 20 years, he made 580 appearances, and scored 1,561 goals, 127 of which came in the Olympics.[2]

His first international appearance was as a 15-year-old at the 1977 European Aquatics Championships in Jönköping, Sweden. At 19 years old, he made his Olympic debut at the 1980 Moscow Games, where he was the leading goalscorer - a feat he repeated at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games and again at the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games, with 21, 34, and 26 goals, respectively.

He has participated in six Olympic Games, all consecutively (Moscow 1980, Los Angeles 1984, Seoul 1988, Barcelona 1992, Atlanta 1996, and Sydney 2000). Estiarte is the second Spaniard to compete at six Olympic Games, after equestrian Luis Álvarez de Cervera; as of 2012, no other Spaniards have competed in six Olympics.

Estiarte is the first water polo player to compete at six Olympic Games. (While there is a case for Welshman Paul Radmilovic to be recognized as such, one of his appearances was the 1906 Intercalated Games, which are not considered 'official'.)

With the national squad he reached the finals at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics on home soil. Estiarte converted a penalty 42 seconds from full-time to put Spain ahead, but nine seconds later Italy equalised and went on to win 9-8 in extra time.

Four years later, he was part of the team that made up for this painful loss by winning gold in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, defeating Croatia 7-5 in the final; the 1996 tournament was the only one of his six Olympics when Estiarte was not the tournament's top scorer.[3]

He won the World Championship at Perth 1998 after finishing in second place at Perth 1991 and Rome 1994.

At the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, he was the flagbearer during the opening ceremony, after which he announced his retirement from the sport.[4]


  • Club Natació Manresa (1975 – 1979) (Spain)
  • Club Natació Barcelona (1979 – 1985) (Spain)
  • Pallanuoto Pescara (1986 – 1989 / 1992 - 1999) (Italy)
  • Rari Nantes Savona ( 1989 – 1991) (Italy)
  • Club Natació Catalunya (1991 – 1992) (Spain)
  • Club Natació Atlètic-Barceloneta (1999 – 2000) (Spain)

Other Sporting Endeavors[edit]

During the 2000 Sydney Olympics, Estiarte was chosen by his fellow athletes in the Olympic Village to represent them in the Commission of Active Athletes, he was also a member of the International Olympics Committee from 2000 to 2006. From July 2008 until June 2012, he was involved in external relations at FC Barcelona,[5][6] he was also Pep Guardiola’s personal assistant at Bayern Munich from 2013 to 2016, and holds the same position with Guardiola at Manchester City FC. Estiarte’s official title at the Premier League club is Head of Player Support and Protocol.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Estiarte was one of three born to parents in Manresa, Spain, with a brother named Albert and a sister named Rosa. All three siblings were involved in high-profile athletics.[7] Rosa Estiarte committed suicide in 1985 by jumping out of a window in their fourth-floor family home, which Manel witnessed.[8] Manel is married and has two children, including a daughter named Rebecca.[9]

In 2009, Estiarte released his autobiography, entitled All My Siblings, in which he recounts his personal and professional life, including the death of his sister Rosa.[10]

Relationship with Pep Guardiola[edit]

Estiarte and Pep Guardiola, current manager of Manchester City FC, have known each other since the early 1990s; the pair met on the final day of the 1991-1992 La Liga season, when Guardiola, still an FC Barcelona player at the time, won the title, and Estiarte, a passionate Barcelona supporter, went to congratulate him.[11] The pair remained in contact throughout both of their careers as athletes, and in 2008, Guardiola asked Estiarte if he could accompany him to Barcelona to assist him as head coach.

The two have been close friends and colleagues since, with Estiarte working with Guardiola for the entirety of his career in management, even assisting Guardiola in obtaining a lawyer when he was accused of doping in 2001.

Guardiola wrote the foreword to Estiarte’s autobiography All My Siblings, saying this about the six-time Olympian: “I don’t know if angels exist and, if they do, if they help us. Much less if guardian angels exist. But, if they do exist, I believe you are one of them.”[10] In reference to Estiarte’s influence on him as a manager, Guardiola has stated that “he helped me a lot in terms of the significance of understanding sport by seeing it from above.”[8] Guardiola maintains that Estiarte is a crucial element to his managerial endeavors.


National Team[edit]

Olympic Games[edit]

  • Gold (1): Atlanta 1996
  • Silver (1): Barcelona 1992
  • Fourth Place (3): Moscow 1980, Los Angeles 1984, Sydney 2000

World Championships[edit]

  • Gold (1): Perth 1998.
  • Silver (2): Perth 1991, Rome 1994.

Water Polo World Cup[edit]

  • Bronze (3): Duisburg 1985, Barcelona 1991, Sydney 1999.

European Championships[edit]

  • Silver (1): Athens 1991
  • Bronze (1): Sheffield 1993.


  • 2 European Cups: with C.N. Barcelona and Pescara.
  • 3 European Cup WInners’ Cups: one with C.N. Barcelona and 2 with Pescara.
  • 9 Leagues: 5 in Spain with C.N. Barcelona and 4 in Italy with Pescara.
  • 11 Domestic Cups: 5 in Italy with C.N. Barcelona and 6 in Italy with Pescara.
  • 4 European Supercups: 2 with C.N. Barcelona and 2 with Pescara.

Individual Distinctions[edit]

  • Gold Insignia by C.N. Manresa in 1982.
  • Title of "The Maradona of Water Polo" by Pescara in 1985.
  • Best Water Polo Player in 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, and 1992.
  • Extraordinary Distinction of the Royal Spanish Swimming Federation in 1992.
  • Gold Medal of the Royal Order of Sports Merit in 1993.
  • Extraordinary Medal of Brilliance of the Royal Spanish Swimming Federation in 1996.
  • Marca Leyenda (Marca Legend) Award in 1998.
  • Prince of Asturias Sports Award in 2001.


Manel Estiarte was awarded with the Gold Medal of the Royal Order of Sports Merit in 1993, and the Grand Cross of the Royal Order of Sports Merit in 1996,[12] the highest distinction of sporting merit in Spain. Additionally, he was granted the most prestigious domestic/international sports award in Spain, the Prince of Asturias Sports Award in 2001.


  • Estiarte, Manel (2009). All My Siblings. Plataforma Editorial. ISBN 978-84-96981-37-9.


  • TV3 Documentary (18/07/2012), «Sense ficció: "Aigua, infern, cel"» on YouTube[13]
  • TVE Documentary (29/10/2012), «Legendarios - Manuel Estiarte» on[14]
  • Movistar+ Documentary (25/05/2016), «Informe Robinson - Manel Estiarte» on YouTube[15]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Manel Estiarte". MCFC. Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  2. ^ S.L., Diarioas AS. "Manel Estiarte: Leyendas de los Juegos Olímpicos en". Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  3. ^ Estiarte still going for goals
  4. ^ S.L., Diarioas AS. "Manel Estiarte: Leyendas de los Juegos Olímpicos en". Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  5. ^ "Manel Estiarte será el nuevo jefe de relaciones externas del FC Barcelona -". Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  6. ^ "Manel Estiarte se va con Guardiola". Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  7. ^ "Juegos Olímpicos: Estiarte, apellido olímpico -". (in Spanish). Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  8. ^ a b "The tragic and triumphant story of Manel Estiarte, Pep Guardiola's secretive right-hand man -". 2016-10-30. Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  9. ^ "manel estiarte como mejor deportista del mundo y como padre". Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  10. ^ a b "TODOS MIS HERMANOS | MANEL ESTIARTE | Comprar libro 9788496981379". (in Spanish). Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  11. ^ "but if guardian angels do exist, I believe you are one of them: the ballad of Pep and Manel". I got soul but I'm not a soldier. Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  12. ^ " - Documento BOE-A-1996-27435". (in Spanish). Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  13. ^ TV3. ""Aigua, infern, cel" El blog de Sense ficció - TV3" (in Catalan). Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  14. ^ "Comunicar es Ganar online - A la Carta". (in Spanish). 2012-04-23. Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  15. ^ Movistar+. "Informe Robinson (25/05/2016): Manel Estiarte (avance)". (in Spanish). Retrieved 2017-10-25.

External links[edit]