César Rodríguez Álvarez (June 29, 1920, León, Spain – March 1, 1995, Barcelona), also referred to as César, is a former Spanish Catalan footballer and manager. César played for, among others, CF Barcelona, Spain and the Catalan XI. During his career with CF Barcelona he played 348 games and scored 235 goals, making him the highest goalscorer in the club’s history . In the history of La Liga, only three players, Zarra, Hugo Sánchez and Alfredo Di Stéfano, have scored more goals. He helped CF Barcelona win five La Liga titles and in 1949 he won the Pichichi after scoring 28 goals. After retiring as a player César became a manager and coached both Real Zaragoza and CF Barcelona.
After playing as a youth in León, César first joined FC Barcelona in 1939. However military service saw him posted to Granada, delaying his senior debut with the club. He spent two seasons on loan at Granada CF and in 1941 helped them win the Segunda División. The following season, 1941-42, both César and Granada CF made their debut in the Primera División. During the season he scored 6 goals in a 7-3 win against CD Castellón and eventually finished as second top goalscorer.
In 1942 César returned to FC Barcelona and won his first La Liga title in 1945. During his playing career at the club his team mates included, among others, Antoni Ramallets, Velasco, Josep Escolà, Joan Segarra, Estanislao Basora, Josep Gonzalvo and Marià Gonzalvo. In 1951 he scored twice in the 3-0 win over Real Sociedad in the Copa del Generalísimo final. Then together with Estanislao Basora, Ladislao Kubala, Eduardo Manchón and Moreno, he was part of a legendary forward line that helped the club win five trophies during the 1951-52 season. He scored again in the Copa final, a 4-2 extra time win against Valencia CF. He also scored the winner in the Copa Latina final, a 1-0 win against OGC Nice.
After leaving FC Barcelona, César had spells at Cultural Leonesa and Perpignan F.C. before joining Elche CF. As a player, and then player-coach he helped Elche, rise from the Tercera División to La Liga in three seasons. In 1958 Elche were promoted to Segunda División, Group 2 and the following season they were promoted to La Liga after they were champions of their group. During the 1959-60, César he also coached Elche in La Liga.
Between 1945 and 1952 César also played 12 times for Spain. He scored on his debut in a 2-2 draw with Portugal on March 11 1945 and was included in the squad for 1950 World Cup. Between 1943 and 1954 he also played 10 times for the Catalan XI. On October 19 1947, at the Sarria, he scored twice as the Catalan XI beat Spain 3-1.
After his success with Elche CF, César became coach at Real Zaragoza. In 1961 he guided to them to third in La Liga and in the following two seasons they finished fourth and fifth. In 1963 they also finished as runners-up to FC Barcelona in the Copa del Generalísimo. This attracted the attention of his former club and in 1964 he succeeded his former team mate Josep Gonzalvo as manager. However he was not a success and he was only in charge for 85 games.