Meet Andrés Cantor, the man whose breathtaking goal calls capture the ‘spirit’ of soccer.
The Spanish captain is the best footballer Spain has ever produced. The best player he has ever coached. It’s fitting that it’s the captaincy that gives Andrés his status of legend and pride.
And yet this is a story that doesn’t have a happy ending. In fact, it all started with a single question that was asked by José Mourinho after his side’s 2-2 home draw with Real Madrid on October 8, 2014:
“Why is Diego (Cristo), or Diego (Cristiano), doing this? Why isn´t he playing for Real Madrid?”
One day after the draw, Mourinho would be asked exactly the same question by his coach, Pep Guardiola, when the midfielder walked out of the dressing room.
Two days later, in a meeting with the players in the hotel bar, Guardiola would be asked it again:
“Why isn’t he playing for us?”
“We’re going to tell him that one day he will,” said the German.
“And he’ll still stay at Madrid. He’ll be playing for the club.”
Three months would pass before Mourinho would ask a third time the same question.
Andrés, after a day at Madrid’s training centre, was sitting in the changing room, sipping out wine. The team would train the next day.
At the same time, one of the stars of Madrid who has come, in that very training room, to meet this player who has a unique personality, was also sitting there. In fact, it’s Cristiano Ronaldo.
There was an awkward moment as Ronaldo asked the Spaniard for his autograph. Andrés, a tall, young man, was at ease with the fact that he was the first one to know Ronaldo, another star in his team, and had a great relationship with him.
In fact, Ronaldo was one of the reasons why Andrés was given the captain’s ar