Born in San Sebastián, Spain on 24 March 1978, Gorka Pintado del Molino became a Swansea City player on 6 June 2008, signing from Granada CF on a performance related contract worth in excess of €200,000 (£250k).
Despite being 30 years old at the time, Pintado caught the eye of Swansea City manager and fellow Spaniard Roberto Martínez, having scored 18 goals in the Spanish Segunda B Division for Granada CF during the 2007/08 season, thanks to his physical approach and aerial ability.
Martinez said of his summer signing – “He is a very charismatic player, a talisman and a hero out there. He has goals in his blood, a real finisher; tactically very aware, aggressive and as strong as a bull. Now he is determined to become fully attached to Swansea City and win the hearts of the fans over here.”
It didn’t take long for the Spaniard to became an fans’ favourite with the Jack Army with two goals in his first three games, scoring on his debut against Nottingham Forest at the Liberty on 16 August 2008 in the Championship.
“El Toro” or “The Bull” as he became known to Swansea fans, cemented his place in fans hearts with the equaliser in the first south Wales league derby in nine years.
The fiery encounter at the Liberty ended in a 2-2 draw, but Pintado made his mark with a cracking header just two minutes after coming on as a substitute.
During his debut season, The Bull made 45 league and cup appearances, scoring 7 goals.
However, despite the promise shown at the start to his Swans career, Pintado made just 34 appearances and scored only twice during the 2009/10 campaign.
He did however gain notoriety for his tackle on Robbie Savage during the Championship game against Derby County at Pride Park on 22 February 2010.
Despite El Toro receiving a red card for the tackle, the Swans managed to hold on for a 1 nil victory. It was the fiery Spaniard’s second red card of the campaign, having already been sent off during the farcical Carling Cup victory over Scunthorpe United in August 2009, when the Swans were reduced to seven men by referee James Linington!
Sadly, the Spaniards time in south Wales was blighted by cruciate knee ligament damage and shoulder injuries and after the arrival of Brendan Rodgers as Swansea City manager during the summer of 2010, Pintado only played 19 minutes of first team football for Swansea during the 2010/11 season.
The Spaniard went out on loan to Cypriot First Division side AEK Larnaca during the January transfer window, before making a permanent move there on 3 August 2011, leaving the Swans by mutual consent.
During his three years at the Swans, Pintado made 80 appearances, scoring 9 goals and providing 3 assists.
As of July 2015, Gorka Pintado had retired from playing football.