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Pelé’s meeting with El Comercio and the story of the shirt that Ramón Mifflin keeps today

With Pele Wearing the ’10′ on the back, whether wearing the ‘white’ shirt of Santos or the ‘green yellow’ in Portuguese of the Brazilian national team, I began to understand that football also lives on delicacies. Crack crack. It was, without any discussion, who has just left this earthly life.

In this journey as a journalist many years after, I remembered today how after that night at the Morumbí stadium in Sao Paulo (11/16/94) together with photojournalist Lino Chipana covering the Sao Paulo-Sporting Cristal match for “Deporte Total” (3-1 with a 30-meter goal from ‘Chorri’ Palacios for the Conmebol Cup) the following day himself Pele he would invite me to sit next to him at a press conference organized by the magazine “Placar”. And it wasn’t about soccer but about the last cars of the year exhibited at a fair near the Guarulhos airport where hours later we would continue our trip to Lima. That São Paulo noon I felt like those zebras that 15 minutes after being born begin to run happily trembling across the African savannahs.

What had happened to receive such an invitation from Pele? Very simple: that, in the large presence of journalists, being among the last and about six meters from him, in a short silence I yelled so that he could hear me: “Pelé sends you greetings Ramón Mifflin”. And he listened to me because he raised his head to see where that voice had come from with a name so well known to him on so many courts around the world, playing as rivals and together. By raising my arm, he signaled for me to come closer to him and, in the empty chair next to him, I ended up sitting down. Pele He was already signing autographs.

It was at the end of the conference with great figures of Brazilian sports such as coach Telé Santana (Itabirito, 1931-Belo Horizonte 2006), Arthur Antunes Coimbra, better known as Zico (Rio de Janeiro, 1953) and former F1 driver Emerson Fittipaldi (Sao Paulo, 1946) who began by asking was Pele. logically by Ramon Mifflin, Teofilo Cubillas, ‘Parrot’ Leon Y Roberto Chale. And since he always kept in constant communication with Ramón, he was up to date because he even told me that he knew that the popular ‘Cabezón’ “was the coach of a team called Pesca” (I clarified that it was Deportivo Pesquero de Chimbote).

Still smiling, he added: “Ramón is a brother. That Ramón, that Ramón. How many things we have lived together. I got so used to him that many times I couldn’t do anything without him there. I brought him to Santos here in Sao Paulo and later I took him to the New York Cosmos and together we traveled the world playing and non-stop laughing at his witticisms and, of course, enjoying his football technique, because he was a great player. .”

When I asked him about two related anecdotes between the two of which I was aware, he only limited himself to saying that there were many. Among them the World Cup in Mexico 70, that afternoon from 2-4 that eliminated Peru, when the friends-brothers faced each other and Pele wished on mifflin “best luck in the world”but “after today” because “This afternoon I want to beat you, hahahaha”. From that World Cup 70 Pele seemed to revive the Mexican Sunday 7/14. While I was greeting Zico, who said goodbye in an instant, staring at me, he told me: “The 2-0 start gave us peace of mind (calm), but when they got 1-2 (Gallardo’s goal), and already with 1-3, our Teófilo put the score at 2-3 as ‘nothing was easy’ (nothing was easy). I remember that Mario (by Zagalo the coach) asked for more rigor and attention to the Peruvian forwards because they appeared everywhere with astonishing speed. Already in the dressing room with the victory assured with Jairzinho’s fourth goal (4-2) having Didí by my side, I don’t know why I reminded him of the year 1959 of the South American game in Buenos Aires when he won 2-0 with one goal from me and another from him they equalized us 2-2 at the end with a fast left winger like Jairzinho and feints like Garrincha but more powerful (by Juan Seminario who scored both goals) and they almost beat us. We came from being world champions of Sweden 58″. And his final sentence in Portuguese: “Nao accredit” (not to believe it). Didi, he told me PeleHe just nodded his head.

Years later in Lima I mentioned that anecdote to Ramón and he added another that he called “the one from Paris”: “A Pele In the run-up to a match that we went to play with the Cosmos in the French capital, Madame Rochas invited him to a dinner. Pelé took me. A luxurious residence with many ornaments of gold. I took a solid gold idol and jokingly told Edson -who was very close- “with this I’ll buy an apartment in San Isidro in Lima”. He looked at me and answered very seriously: “Ramón, leave that in its place. Don’t even think about taking it with you.”

Pele and Ramon Mifflin.  (Photo: Facebook)

And what about Mexico? and Ramón speaks: “My compadre Roberto (Chale) that day in Guadalajara had the mission of following Pele and with minutes to go before the final whistle I asked him to mark Gerson and that I take care of Pelé. It was to finally ask for his shirt that he did not hesitate to give it to me while I gave him mine. And it is that ‘Perico’ had asked him for it before starting the game but I beat him to it and he went away demanding. Until today I keep it from someone like Pelé who for me, he was an extraordinary guy as a person and as a footballer. It changed my life”.

Another former crack of ours who had a great friendship with Pele It was Teófilo Cubillas. One day when I was in his apartment on Av. Pardo in Miraflores, I asked him who he would vote for as the best: Pele or Maradona (Messi had not yet appeared). This was the phrase that I pointed to the ‘Nene’ that time: “I peeled because I had to face him, see him up close. When I started he was my idol and he never disappointed me and, on top of that, in Mexico 70 he was kind enough to say that his successor had appeared with me ”.

I replied: “Yes, but his famous ’10′ shirt was given to Ramón that afternoon”. The ‘Baby’ did not shut up: “Of course, who was it going to be but Ramón, who was his conceited one.”

Source: Elcomercio

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