WOODY ALLEN JUGANDO AL FÚTBOL

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Texto de Jorge Valdano *Extracto de un texto publicado origialmente en el diario El País, 1991.

Era Woody Allen jugando al fútbol: un cuerpo insuficiente para cualquier cosa, una cara adecuada para el fracaso, un talento punzante, veloz, inmenso. Era como ese ladrón que ausculta la imposible caja fuerte mientras sus dedos le sacan el secreto a la clave, hasta que de pronto…¡clic!. Sí, señor: un balón jugado por él abría todos los candados defensivos. Le bastaba un toque, un clic. Su cabeza es como una cancha de pueblo, pelada en el centro; su tronco de plastilina, y sus piernas, de alambre. Clara demostración de que en el fútbol el aspecto no hace al ídolo. El Bocha era la reserva espiritual de un fútbol que se nos escapaba de las manos a toda velocidad. Jugaba con el número 10, número que arrastraba la sospecha, en este caso confirmada, de ser poco trabajador; su pierna era la derecha, pero nunca supo pegarle a la pelota; a lo sumo, la empujaba. Cabecear, tampoco, porque tenía cuatro pelos y no era cuestión de ponerlos en peligro. A entrenar no iba mucho, y cuando se decidía llegaba tarde. No se apresuren a juzgarlo: era un genio que usaba la cabeza para pensar milagros, el pie derecho para hacerlos y el cuerpo para contarles mentiras a los rivales. Aun así, ¿cómo explicarle su grandeza a un europeo? Él era la síntesis del conjunto de vicios y valores más característicos del jugador argentino, Cierta vez le preguntaron por Johan Cruyff, y su respuesta fue casi una definición: “Corre mucho, pero juega bien”. Es que siempre le pareció una contradicción, además de una extravagancia, que alguien dotado para jugar bien se pusiera a sudar. Quien supo condensar una filosofía popular que prestigia la técnica y la creatividad al tiempo que condena el sacrificio. El Bocha nunca vio la necesidad, francamente.

LOS GOLES, PARA LOS OTROS

Siempre jugó para el gol, a condición de que fuera otro quien se encargara de meterlo. En un partido amistoso que la Selección Argentina jugo en Buenos Aires bajo la dirección de César Luis Menotti, nuestro número 10 se cansó de servir goles y sus compañeros se cansaron de errarlos. Ya en el vestuario, El Bocha se quejó amargamente: ”A este paso voy a tener que meter los goles yo”. Hasta ahí podíamos llegar; eso hubiera significado una traición, ya que Bochini sólo metía un gol si no había más remedio. El fútbol, según Bochini, era de paredes, gambetas y pase profundo, definición simple y concreta que encaja con su personalidad poco ruidosa. Con paredes y gambetas limpiaba su propio camino de odiosos adversarios; con el pase profundo se limpiaba a los compañeros.

Si se tratara de secuencias fotográficas, sería más o menos así. Primera foto: Bochini, con la cabeza levantada, el balón a sus pies y tres rivales adelante. Segunda foto: Bochini con la cabeza levantada, el balón a sus pies y tres rivales en el suelo. Tercera foto: Bochini, tocando el balón. Cuarta foto: Un compañero de Bochini se encuentra con dos regalos: el balón y el arco contrario. Quinta foto: El gol, que como ustedes recordarán, es un trámite que Bochini delega.

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El fútbol de otra manera.

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