“Tatanka” Dario Hubner, a Jack of All Goal-Scoring Trades

Born in Muggia, Province of Trieste, Dario Hubner started his career in 1987/88 at Pievigina, in Serie D. He managed to be noticed by some Serie C clubs, thus he moved to Pergocrema in 1988 and then to Fano in 1989. In 1992 he finally landed in Serie B, playing for Cesena.

Eventually, in 1997, Brescia decided to invest in him and brought him to Serie A. On his debut day, he scored his first goal in the top-flight, against Inter at the San Siro, from an Andrea Pirlo delivery. On his second appearance, he scored a hat-trick against Sampdoria. In Brescia, he had the opportunity to play with Roberto Baggio under Carletto Mazzone’s guidance. In 2001, he moved to Piacenza, where he played his most prolific season, tallying 24 goals and winning the capocannoniere title alongside David Trezeguet.

Along with Igor Protti, Hübner is the only player to have won the top-scoring title in Serie A, Serie B, and Serie C1.

After his time with Piacenza, he later played for Ancona during the first half of the 2003–04 Serie A season, and subsequently moved to Serie A club Perugia. He later moved on to play for Mantova in Serie C1.

In September 2005, he left professional football.

A fun story about him, as recounted by Carlo Ancelotti, says a lot about his personality:

It was May 2002, and Dario Hubner had joined Milan for a tournee in the USA. I remember an anecdote, which happened in a game against Ecuador… The first half ended, and upon returning to the locker room, I was going to talk to the boys, (all the “big names” were away, training with various national teams preparing for the 2002 World Cup). I was looking for Hubner, and couldn’t find him. So I asked: ‘What happened to Dario?’. Then, Abbiati told me: ‘Coach, he is in the bathroom.’

I opened the door and saw that he was smoking a Marlboro and drinking a small can of beer. I said to him: ‘Dario, what are you doing? Smokeing and drinking in the locker room while trying to get signed by Milan? How can you play in the second half?’

He looked at me and said: ‘Honestly, coach, I have been doing this for a lifetime, and if I don’t do it, I can’t play at my best. Speaking of Milan, I only came here for self-promotion so that I can extend my career by another 2-3 years. Otherwise, at this time, I would have rather been in my country getting some fresh air. Finally, do you want a cigarette?’

At that line, the whole locker room burst into laughter, and I too had a good laugh. That was Dario, genuine at best. He only thought about feeling good about himself“.