Alfredo Vicente Greus and Lapatza, two goalkeepers with parallel lives

Alfredo Vicente Greus and Lapatza, two goalkeepers with parallel lives
Formation of Real Betis with the goalkeeper Alfredo Greus top dereccha (Real Betis)

Last update October 3, 2019 by Javier Argudo

Football is full of stories that could have been and were not Utopian and coincidences that went on to become realities. Last 29 September 2019 died Alfredo Graves, The former goalkeeper of several Spanish and Latin American clubs, "Official" dean, also, of the Real Betis Balompié.

Alfredo Graves It was born in the Valencian town of Alginet, town where he also ended his days. He started playing football in his hometown team, UD Alginet, where he excelled and soon was called up by the Valencia, to play in their reserve team and get the Championship of Spain Amateur, beating Sociedad Deportiva Indauchu, the team would play three years, the other protagonist of this article, Vicente Lapatza, by 4 goals 1.

At Valencia not reached curdle, the first team not managed to debut in official party and, also, being habitual substitute, only he came to defend the Valencia goal in two friendlies. A) Yes, the che assignment will be looking in order to assess its evolution. Their fate was, for a season, the Real Zaragoza, where he also not managed to grab title. Valencians will release contractually, but his commitment was for three years, and signed by the Real Betis, and as free agent, in the year 1943.


After three seasons as verdiblanco, where ownership and Alternaria suplencia, arrive at Real Oviedo. Five years, the greater regularity of his career, as carbayón. Then came up with the option of starting an American adventure that began in Spain in Mexico and ended in the Venezuelan team La Salle de Caracas. Of Venezuela receives an irresistible offer, sign for Real Madrid, but assuming the role of reserve goalkeeper. Valencia goalkeeper accepts and signs as white, where it would remain until the end of the season 1951-52.

There he played little, but Alfredo Graves always he had like pride, and bragged about it, It has been the first-choice goalkeeper in the match of the fiftieth anniversary of the white club. At the end of his contract with the meringues, Coach Pepe Nogues It offers a new, and possibly last contract, You will sign for Sporting Gijon, and requires an alternate guarantees to cover possible casualties permanent fixture of the rojiblancos: Zion and to compete with the other alternate, Pérez Zabala.

It was the return to First Division Sporting and Nogues He wanted three goalkeepers in the first team, and that all had experience. Unfortunately for Valencia, negotiations were complicated and lengthened more than necessary between Nogués and Sporting. And begins the league as coach Atletico exjugador Luisín Menéndez, coach subsidiaries and was linked to the Asturian club as coach until his death in 1965. After the dispute of the first days of League and Cup first round, we reach an agreement, Nogués and Pepe finally signs as coach sportinguista.

Nogues it contacts Alfredo Graves, but this was already meddled in their business, He opened a department store in his hometown, so his career path as a footballer had decided to end it. With Nogues on the computer, at the end of the same, Category saved, downward it gives Pérez Zabala and is tab Catalan Sorribas.


In the year 1952 the Asturian Center of Mexico, then headed by Antonio Gutiérrez López, decide, at the request of several partners and supported by the significant economic surplus that had the entity, Asturian bring a team to play a few games to their host country. To end the dispute between oviedistas and sportinguistas as to which club should go, it is agreed that the guest team will get better ranking at the end of that season. Sporting Y Oviedo They were both in the First Division and after the season 1952-53 the first was in seventh position and the second it did in ninth.

The Sporting, well, he had made with the possibility of facing his first international tour. With the change in the presidency of Asturian Center of Mexico, its new president Laureano Carús Pando -original de Caravia- Sports and vocal Antonio Blanco Isoba -natural Country Case and years later would chair the International Federation of Asturian Centers- are those made efforts to organize the arrival and stay of Atletico to Mexico City and seek rival against whom face.

In 1953, the Asturian Center of Mexico He had three hundred fifty partners and thou an important role in Mexican society of the time, so he opened the doors of the most important clubs in the country (including its National Team), desirous, also, to face off against a team from the top flight of Spanish football. The Asturian Center of Havana He later joined the project and it had, in addition to the financial support of some industrial Asturian established there, with collaboration in raising funds from a group of young enthusiasts of society Juventud Asturiana, riosellano led by Antonio Aramburu and Aquilino gijonés Suárez, both recognized sportinguistas fans. Sporting three meetings in Cuba would dispute and as many in Mexico.


While Sporting was affectionately received by residents Asturias in Havana, It did not happen the same with its president, Paulino Antón Trespalacios, general of the Spanish army reserve. Against him, known supporter of Franco's cause, a campaign of protests was organized from within the Asturian centers themselves and also from the many Spanish exiles established in both countries.

In Cuba most of the members of the Asturian Center also sympathetic to the republican cause in Mexico and the situation was even more complicated for Paulino Antón, since the Central American country had been much more open to receiving them when (in the dictator Batista ruled Cuba, clear supporter of Franco). Twenty thousand Spanish exiles living in the Aztec country, two thousand of them Asturian.

Just arrived Sporting to Havana, Paulino Anton could see the tense situation generated its presence in both countries and chose to return to Spain the next morning from his arribada, without even sleep in the hotel where he was staying Atletico and leaving the expedition to coach full charge Pepe Nogues, carte blanche for what to consider, Transfers included.

The Havana International Tournament He began the day 2 July 1953 with the meeting held against the Galician Center of Havana (along with Deportivo San Francisco was the Cuban team pointer moment) and victory for Sporting 0 a 1. The anticipation was huge, and the stands had an almost full house. Thirteen thousand fans were able to live the first of victories outside Spain Gijón. The 7 July beat the Galician Center 7 a 0 al Deportivo Cali. And the 9 July second was played matches for the Asturian club, this time, as a result of tremendous heat and to request sportinguista, at half past ten p.m.. The victory was again for Sporting who defeated 2 a 1 Colombian set.


The first two ranked teams, the Sporting (two wins) and the Centro Gallego (with a match won) disputed the 19 the end of July Havana International Tournament, this time defeating the Cuban club 2 a 1 and clinching the same. More than ten thousand spectators attended the final and there were numerous presence of Asturian fans who never ceased to encourage the Sporting. During the tournament, He caught the attention of a young goalkeeper Nogues, Vicente Lapatza, he had played in different Basque teams: He left the Erandio, He went through the Indauchu, Arenas de Getxo (the year in which the club descended to Third Division), and again Erandio, to test after the Colombian football adventure.

In this country, He played in the National University In the season 1951-52 and the Junior de Barranquilla at 1952-53, where he faced twice the feared di Stéfano, and where he was nicknamed "Jaws" who accompanied him, since then, in the rest of his career At the end of that season, Junior de Barranquilla disappeared for economic reasons and Lapatza signed for Deportivo Cali, with a condition, He could break the contract if a club appeared more responsive to its sporting pretensions.

So it was, He lapatza only played with two encounters caleños Havana International Tournament. After his stay in Cuba joined the expedition Asturian Lapatza Luis Vicente Tineo, the "shark" of Erandio, after signing contract for Sporting in a hotel in Havana. Lapatza only played one season as sportinguista, the 53-54 in which he played six games, but his bond with the Asturian club was much higher: After his retirement as a goalkeeper, He was exercising five years sportinguista ojeador work in Cantabria and the Basque Country.


Frichu Yustas

I enjoy my two passions, football and music. Author of several books: "Atlas Music" (2007) along with other authors; "The rocks of Real Sporting de Gijón. History of a hobby" (2018) Rebeca Diaz with; "Football stories yesterday" (2019); "History of the CP Gijón Solimar" (2020). You can follow me on Twitter @fritzyustas

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

error: Content is protected !!