Bernd Holzenbein dies aged 78: Tributes pour in for the German World Cup winner and ex-Eintracht Frankfurt attacker as he passes away after a long illness

Former Germany attacker Bernd Holzenbein has passed away following a long and serious illness at the age of 78.

Holzenbein, who spent the majority of his career playing for Eintracht Frankfurt, died on Monday evening. 

During his playing career, the attacking midfielder helped West Germany win the 1974 World Cup final, notably winning the penalty that allowed his side score an equaliser, before going on to claim a 2-1 victory. 

Holzenbein started his playing career with Frankfurt, joining the club’s youth teams in 1967. 

He would continue to play with the Bundesliga side for another 14 years, making 524 appearances while returning a 212 goals and 38 assists, before departing to join US side FL Strikers. 

The attacking midfielder would enjoy a glittering career both on the international and domestic stages, winning three Cerman Cups and the UEFA Cup in 1980 with Frankfurt. 

Frankfurt paid tribute to their former player on Tuesday, writing in a statement on X (formerly Twitter): ‘The Eintracht family mourns the loss of world champion Bernd Hölzenbein. 

‘As a player, he won four titles with Eintracht, his 160 Bundesliga goals in the Eintracht jersey will probably remain unmatched forever, a foul on him has a place in every history book and one of his countless goals is hard to beat in terms of the combination of curiosity and importance. 

‘The Eintracht family will always think of all this when the name Bernd Hölzenbein is mentioned.’ 

Frankfurt CEO Axel Hellmann added: ‘Bernd Hölzenbein has had a significant influence on our Eintracht for almost 60 years. He stands for the ‘Golden 1970s’ as well as for the European Cup victory in 1980 and also the ‘Football 2000’ that our club played in the early 1990s and in which he played a key role as vice-president.

‘With Bernd Hölzenbein, we are not only losing one of the great identification figures of our club, but also a loyal employee and a lovely friend.’ 

According to BILD, the ex-footballer had recently been suffering from severe dementia. 

More to follow…