Munich - FC Bayern München's former coach Pal Csernai has died after a lengthy illness at the age of 80.

His trademark was a silk scarf, but his stamp on the game of football was left indelibly by his achievements with Germany's record title-holders and his famous 'Pal-System'.

The Hungarian coached Bayern from 1978 until 1983, and led the Bavarians to two Bundesliga titles and a DFB Cup triumph. In 1982, he led the club to the final of the European Cup, but they were beaten by 1-0 English side Aston Villa FC in Rotterdam.


He may have been known as "the man with the scarf" around Germany, but his greatest innovation wasn't sartorial. In fact, it was on-field, as his 'Pal-System' pioneered a mixture of zonal and man-marking.

After leaving Bayern, Csernai embarked on a veritable odyssey of coaching: through Greece and Portugal, then back to Germany with Borussia Dortmund, Eintracht Frankfurt and Hertha Berlin, before taking charge of the North Korean national side in 1993.

Csernai retired in 1995 and lived peacefully in Budapest until his death, watching English and Italian football, as well as, of course, the Bundesliga.