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Getting To Know: José Manuel Pinto

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Full name: José Manuel Pinto Colorado
Squad No: 13
Position: Goalkeeper
Date of birth: 8 November 1975
Place of birth: El Puerto de Santa María, Spain
Height: 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)
Weight: 82 kg (181 lbs)

José Manuel Pinto was born in a small town of El Puerto de Santa María, located 10 km north east of Cádiz in Andalusia. Pinto's talents were noticed by Real Betis' scouts while he was playing youth football with Safa San Luís. He immediately joined the Betis B team and was the starting goalkeeper for three and a half seasons. He played in 68 games for the second team.

In the 1998 season he was promoted to the first team making his debut as a second half substitute against Racing Santander. Because of steady goalkeeping by Toni Prats, the game against Racing was Pinto's only game in a Betis uniform.

Seeking first team football Pinto moved to Celta Vigo a year later. There he wasn't handed the starting job immediately, but in his second season he was finally playing regularly. Pinto again lost his job in the 2001-02 season with the arrival of Pablo Cavallero, but the Spaniard was still the goalkeeper of choice in European Competitions.

In 2004 Cavallero left the club resulting in plenty of playing time for José Manuel Pinto who played almost every game for the next three and a half seasons. In the 2005-06 season he played the best football of his career, winning the Zamora trophy, and one of the best goalkeeping performances in Celta Vigo's history. He allowed only 29 goals in 37 league games.  In almost ten years with the team he played in 224 games, including 23 in European Competitions

In the winter transfer window of the 2007-08 season Pinto joined Barcelona on a six month loan as a backup to Víctor Valdés. His arrival was necessary because of the injury to Albert Jorquera. The deal that sent him from Celta to Barcelona was valued at €0.5M and included a clause that allowed Barcelona to sign him on a permanent deal at the end of the loan period. When the season ended Pinto signed a two year deal to stay with the team. He has appeared in 31 games for the Catalan club, in what are now two years, 21 of the appearances came in the Copa del Rey where he's Guardiola's first choice goalkeeper.

Profile
Pinto is a very strong and agile goalkeeper and an excellent shot-stopper. He has quick reflexes making him very good at stopping shots from close range, including penalty kicks, but he is also not easy to beat from long range. He has been known to make the occasional bad decisions when coming of the line on crosses and corner kicks.

Honors
Celta de Vigo

  • UEFA Intertoto Cup (1): 2000

FC Barcelona

  • La Liga (2): 2008-09, 2010-2011

  • Copa del Rey (1): 2008-09

  • Supercopa de España (2): 2009, 2010

  • UEFA Champions League (1): 2008-09

  • UEFA Super Cup (1): 2009

  • FIFA Club World Cup (1): 2009

Individual

  • Zamora Trophy (1): 2005-06

José Manuel Pinto is expected to sign a new contract in the following days. His current contract runs out at the end of this season.

Next up: Javier Mascherano

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