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José Ramón Alexanko Ventosá (born 5 May 1956 in Barakaldo, Vizcaya), also referred to as Alesanco or Alexanco, is a former Spanish footballer and manager. He is currently director of youth development at FC Barcelona. He played as a defender for Bilbao Athletic, Deportivo Alavés, Athletic Bilbao, FC Barcelona, Spain and the Euskadi XI. Alexanko was captain of the legendary Dream Team while at FC Barcelona and helped the club win sixteen trophies. After retiring as a player in 1993 he went onto coach both FC Universitatea Craiova and FC Naţional Bucureşti in Romania. He also worked as assistant manager to Carles Rexach when the latter as manager of FC Barcelona.

Alexanko played as a junior with Llodio before joining Athletic Bilbao in 1974. After two seasons with the Bilbao Athletic, the Athletic reserve team, he went on loan to Deportivo Alavés before making his senior debut with Athletic Bilbao in 1976. He subsequently played 91 La Liga games for Athletic, scoring 8 goals. The highlight of his career at Athletic was winning two runners-up medals in 1977 - one in the Copa del Rey and one in the UEFA Cup. Among his team mates were the veterans José Ángel Iribar and Javier Irureta.

In 1980 Alexanko signed for FC Barcelona where he paved the way for a number of fellow Basque players including Andoni Zubizarreta, Txiki Beguiristain, Julio Salinas, Goikoetxea and José Mari Bakero . With Alexanko as captain they formed the backbone of the legendary Dream Team. His personal highlights included scoring the winning goal as FC Barcelona beat Real Sociedad 1-0 in the 1988 Copa del Rey final and coming on as a late substitute in the 1992 European Cup Final, enabling him to lift the trophy. He had earlier had a penalty saved by keeper Helmuth Duckadam as Barcelona lost the 1986 European Cup Final on penalties to Steaua Bucharest.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Jose Ramon."
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