Maturana and his funny anecdote at the Intercontinental Cup in 1989

Maturana and his funny anecdote at the Intercontinental Cup in 1989
Francisco Maturana, Atlético Nacional coach who was champion of the Libertadores in 1989 (As Colombia)

Francisco Maturana He is one of the best coaches Colombian soccer has given. The coach has a great career on the bench both at club and national team level. Today we rescued a fun anecdote that took place in the final of the Intercontinental Cup of the year 1989.

National Athletic came from proclaiming himself champion of the Liberators cup and it was a team that marveled for its colorful football. Mythical Colombian players made up their squad (Higuita, Andres Escobar, Alvarez…). But nevertheless, the rival in that final in Tokyo would be one of the best teams in history: The AC Milan Arrigo Sacchi.

The Colombian team had a problem and that is that their championship stopped for a while before the final. The team of Maturana He organized various friendlies to roll to the clash against the Italians. But nevertheless, in one of them, Andres Escobar, lag leader, suffered a painful ankle injury. The team doctor authorized the footballer to play undercover.

Maturana Valladolid
Pacho Maturana coached Real Valladolid after the 1990 World Cup in Italy. There he coincided with several Colombian soccer players (Brand)

The Colombian coach told in various interviews that they prepared the match against Milan thoroughly. The entire team expedition traveled a week before the final to Tokyo and it was ensured that the players did not leave the hotel. Training and concentration only. The coach strove to make his footballers understand that in order to beat their rival they had to behave like them.

With this objective, Maturana asked his players to study their rivals. European footballers with an orderly and methodical life. During the days that the concentration lasted, the Colombians made an effort to it to the point of admiring those ‘Italian machines’.

Finally came that 17 from December to 1989. National Athletic Y AC Milan The faces were seen at the Tokyo National Stadium before more than 60.000 spectators in the stands. The coffee growers stood up to their rival to the point of taking the clash to overtime. But nevertheless, when it was only a minute before the champion had to resolve on penalties, Evani scored the goal that gave the title to the Italians.

Intercontinental 1989
AC Milan and Atlético Nacional played an exciting final (@TPhoto)

Back to the hotel, Francisco Maturana gave his players permission to take a walk around Tokyo and see the city. After all, the title was already lost. Even so, insisted on behaving properly, remembering again his Italian rivals whose conduct was faultless.

“I let the boys get to know Tokyo after so many days of concentration. I stayed at the hotel with the doctor and Andrés Escobar, who had played undercover the entire game and had a lot of ankle pain. Starting at 3 At dawn some of my players began to arrive between laughs. Then I knew that they had ignored me and that they had gone to undesirable places”.

Indeed, some player on the campus recognized Maturana who had visited various cocktail bars and even a brothel: “Prof, in those places we have found Maldini, Van Basten… there were all the Italians that you insistently asked us to imitate”.

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