Freddy Rincón: la potencia hecha fútbol, perfil – Fútbol Internacional – Deportes

Freddy Rincón: la potencia hecha fútbol, perfil - Fútbol Internacional - Deportes

Soccer players often have a keen eye for when a new guy comes along who can make a difference. William Morales, a great left back who only had eyes for a soccer girlfriend, Independiente Santa Fe, he lived that: in 1981 they took him to train with the professional team and the greats of the squad, among them the Argentines Osvaldo Marcial Palavecino and Aldo Fernando ‘Pichón’ Rodríguez, told the coach, Alonso ‘Cachaco’ Rodríguez, to leave him in the team.

They made him debut in a classic against Millonarios and he responded. He stayed 13 years.

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The ‘Palmero’ also had an eye. One day a big black man from Buenaventura came to train with the big squad, who acted as a central defender or as a midfielder. Morales warned Santa Fe coach Jorge Luis Pinto that this player had something special. But Pinto had already had his eye on him when he saw him in the lower divisions.

He began to put him in little by little: in his first game, in Bucaramanga, he entered in the second half and was expelled. A month later, for a match against Junior, in El Campín, he handed him the shirt and told him: “Today he’s starting. I hand him the shirt. You will see if you return it to me”. He never left the team again. Rincón was an exceptional player. He had power, he knew how to score, he scored goals… he was a complete crack.

soccer family

He had come to Santa Fe from Buenaventura, his homeland, where he was the youngest of eight siblings. Two of them also had to do with football.

One of them, Ignacio, was said to be better than Freddy. He managed to play in minor Colombian teams and arrived in Santa Fe at the beginning of the 70s. Another, Manuel, became professional first, with Cristal Caldas, and then shared a team with Freddy in Santa Fe.

With Freddy came a striker named Juan Reyes, his first roommate in Bogotá. Reyes also made his debut with Santa Fe and then had steps through Huila and Millonarios.

But it was he who shone the most. In that Santa Fe he fought for the title two years in a row, but he was left wanting to celebrate: the champion was Millonarios, in a tournament punctuated by scandals.

The historic celebration of Colombia’s first goal. Freddy Rincón marked him, Asprilla and Valderrama fell on him and ‘Chonto’ Herrera also joined.

And in 1989, after winning the Colombia Cup with Santa Fe, which was the second part of the League, Surprisingly, he was transferred to América de Cali, in a decision that the fans never understood.

America turned out to be the place where he performed best in Colombia. And that in Santa Fe had put a very high point. He spent three and a half years, won two titles and reached the semifinal of the Copa Libertadores in 1992, in which Newell’s Old Boys eliminated them in an eternal shootout from the penalty spot.

By then he had already achieved the most important goal in Colombian football until then, the tie against Germany in the 1990 World Cup in Italy.in a Colombia National Team that, initially, had not had it in its plans. Francisco Maturana had summoned him for a friendly tournament in Bogotá, in 1988, in which Millonarios, Santa Fe and the Uruguayan National Team participated.

But ‘Pacho’ was not satisfied. He did not take him into account in the tie, but he did appear in the first call-up before the World Cup, for a friendly match against the Uruguayans in Miami. That day he debuted and never came out. He lasted 11 years in the National Team, played 84 games and, until the World Cup in Russia, was the fifth all-time scorer in the yellow jersey, with 17 goals.

Colombia selection


His talent transcended borders, especially in Brazil. And he was the first Colombian to play for Real Madrid, where he arrived in 1995,
after a one-year stint at Napoli. He was unable to adapt to the environment or the racist environment that he lived in since he arrived at the club.

Eventually he arrived at Corinthians and there he had the opportunity to get even: In 2000, Fifa held the first Club World Cup and in that tournament, Corinthians and Real Madrid were in the same group. Only the first went to the final. On the last date, the Brazilians faced Al-Nassr from Saudi Arabia. Rincón scored the second goal for the 2-0 win. That goal put Corinthians in the final, by goal difference, one more than Madrid…

He was so loved in Brazil that he played for three of the great São Paulo teams and he is fondly remembered by all of them: Palmeiras, Santos and Corinthians. And not to mention in Colombia, where even today, fans over 35 shed a tear when they see his run towards the rival goal to, again and again, send the ball between the legs of goalkeeper Bodo Illgner.

Your data

Freddy Rincon
Birth: August 14, 1966
Teams: Santa Fe (1987-89), America (1989-92), Palmeiras (1994 and 1996), Napoli (1994-95), Real Madrid (1995-96), Corinthians (1997-00 and 2004), Santos ( 2000-01) and Cruzeiro (2001).

Matches played in Colombia: 287.
Goals: 76.

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Taken from the Book ‘Play boys’
Jose Orlando Ascencio
Sub-editor of sports at EL TIEMPO
@josasc