Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Part 3 - A story of true Argentine football passion: Palermo's retirement.

Well, on Sunday night, Martin Palermo, scorer of 238 goals for Boca Juniors, finally retired after a highly celebrated career. He retired in front of his fans at La Bombanera and I stayed up to watch the celebrations on TV.

He had a good game, should have scored once or twice, but Boca eventually finished with a pleasing 1-1 draw with rivals Banfield. Palermo wore his number 9 jersey, complete with Gold lettering of his name and number on his back and his team mates did everything they could to lay on one final goal for him, but it just didn't happen.

At the end of the game, the scenes were incredible. There were videos on the big screen with tributes from his family, ex-coaches and friends, he received a hand made 'Super-Palermo' cape from his local charity, he gave speeches, he cried, the crowd cried and chanted so loud and after all of that two fork-lifts removed one of the goals and they were presented to him with a gold plaque with 'Martin Palermo - No.9' etched into the crossbar. Maradona was there too and he was loving it.

Today at school, I bumped into Hernan (my friend who runs the sound at La Bombanera) and I asked him how the game was on Sunday night between Boca and Banfield. He just beamed and (totally speechless) he removed a plastic wrapped item from his bag. Sure enough...it was the microphone that Palermo held the whole time during the celebrations. Hernan swore he would never use it again for anyone and was so proud of it! It was absolutely awesome. I held Palermo's (plastic wrapped) microphone proudly and gave Hernan a big Argentinean hug/kiss and the experience was complete.

Here is a clip to help explain things a little more (the harmonica solo is the Argentinean national anthem...great vibe on the harp):

Chris :)

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