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Telê Santana: the master April 22, 2010

Posted by Cesar in gaming me, sporting me.
Tags: , , ,

I usually write about technology and games on the blog. But I can’t let this date pass.

Yesterday it’s been exactly four years since Telê Santana died. He was considered by many, me included, the best football coach in history and led my team, São Paulo Futebol Clube, to its greatest achievements: two Libertadores da América and two Intercontinental Cups, in 1992 and 1993. I’ll always remember that team with a lot of pride and a bit of nostalgia.

My most emotional football moment also involves him. When São Paulo won its third Libertadores in 2005, twelve years after the last one, I was at the stadium. And when the referee blew the final whistle, the whole crowd, 70 thousand people, started singing Telê’s name, even though he had retired a long time ago. An homage to the greatest coach the team ever had. I confess it made me cry, I’ll never forget that moment.

Telê Santana was also an adept of nice, pretty, offensive football. When commanding the national team in the 1982 Word Cup, he created what most consider to be the best team Brazil ever had after Pelé retired. No one thought true legends like Zico, Sócrates, Cerezo and Falcão could play on the same team, there was no space. But Telê made it happen and it was wonderful. Pure magic.

When that team lost to Italy in what we Brazilians remember as the Battle of Sarriá, the country was in shock. In 1982, the beautiful and offensive football preached by Telê Santana didn’t win the World Cup. But it conquered the whole world.

We miss you Telê.

See you space cowboys…


1. Durval - April 23, 2010

Tele was a master of serious football. There is another style, which is the playful football, which is also beautiful. Maybe the icon of this style was Garrincha, an eternal boy. Coaches are not so important for this kind of football which, in our times, is exemplified by the young team of Santos F.C.

2. impatientbuddha - October 22, 2011

Came across a random video of the 1982 Brazil team, then onto googling Tele Santana, and finally to your blog post (among others). The football he preached was mesmerizing; he definitely was an old-school romantic.. a football version of Don Quixote, if you will :)

Cesar - October 24, 2011

Hi man, thanks for reading! Telê had a romantic vision of football but a very pragmatic and serious vision of training. He always found a way to extract the most out of every athlete. I think that’s what made him the best.

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