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Here’s How Chicharito Silenced His Haters

It’s been a rough 2015 for Javier Hernandez. After a surprising move from Manchester United to Spanish fútbol giants Real Madrid, Hernandez spent the last four months mostly riding the bench. But Chicharito’s game-winning goal during Real’s Champions League match versus bitter rivals Atlético Madrid gave him a taste of redemption.

Before his game-winning goal, the “Little Pea” was the butt of joke after joke on social media.

Chicharito’s new girlfriend became a bigger story than his performances for Real:

With Real Madrid beset by injuries, Chicharito was given a starting spot in an important match – the second leg of the Champions League semifinal versus Atlético Madrid. Would Chicharito prove the doubters wrong?

The Pressure Was On

When Chicharito Was Announced as a Starter, Doubters Were Out in Force

But So Were the Believers

During the Match, Chicharito Was Taking a Beating

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And Had Some Chances to Score

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But It Looked Like It Wasn’t Going to Be His Day

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Until the Dying Moments of the Match

GOOOOOOOOOOOOOL

Some Fans Instantly Changed Their Minds

While the Bernabeu Stadium Erupted in a Chicharito Chant

As He Rested on the Bench, Chicharito Was Emotional

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He finally got to play, helped his team win and he quieted his haters. Not bad for a day’s work.

The Chicharito “Hero” Memes Were Unleashed

Even Chicharito’s Former Teammates Congratulated Him

And Although Chicharito Remained Humble in his Comments to the Media, He Was Probably Thinking:

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All The Things We Learned From Netflix’s New “Pelé” Documentary

Entertainment

All The Things We Learned From Netflix’s New “Pelé” Documentary

Netflix continues to churn out powerful films in countries around the world and their latest venture, a look into the life of Brazilian footballer Pelé is another hit. Sure, Pelé may be considered the world’s best soccer player ever but his place in Brazilian history is less clear – at least according to the new doc.

Filmmakers David Tryhorn and Ben Nicholas spent hours in Pelé’s company interviewing him on everything from a childhood spent in poverty to his numerous affairs and his controversial relationship with the authoritarian regime that ruled Brazil during his playing career. Here are some of the key takeaways from this must watch documentary.

Pelé was criticized for not taking a political stance during Brazil’s authoritarian regime.

In 1964, the Brazilian military staged a coup, which led to a dictatorship being established in the country that lasted until 1985. The military government relied on torture and repression to maintain power.

In the film, Pelé is asked whether he knew about these practices at the time.

“If I were to say now that I had never been aware of it, that would be a lie,” he says. “There was a lot we never got to find out, but there were many stories too.”

However, the film paints him as taking a neutral stance throughout, never criticising the regime. Former team-mate Paulo Cezar Lima – aka Caju – doesn’t forgive him.

“I love Pele but that won’t stop me criticizing him. I thought his behavior was that of a black man who says ‘yes sir’,” said Caju. “A submissive black man. It’s a criticism I hold against him until this day, because just one statement from Pelé would have gone a long way.”

The government may have interfered with the Brazilian team.

A dejected Pele leaves the field at Goodison Park after being beaten 3-1 by Portugal, 1966.

The film paints a picture of how national team’s exploits were used to launder the reputation of the military regime during the 1960s. Before the 1970 World Cup, a journalist and friend of Pelé’s describes how it became very important for the regime’s international image that Brazil win the World Cup again. And that meant Pele had to play.

“Winning the World Cup became a governmental matter,” Kfouri says. “The team staff were almost entirely made up of military personnel.”

Manager Joao Saldanha appears to have been fired in the lead-up to the 1970 World Cup for criticizing the Brazilian president, telling a reporter: “I don’t pick his ministers and he doesn’t pick my team. That way we understand each other well.”

Pelé wanted to quit after the 1966 World Cup.

Credit: Pelé / Netflix

In the 1966 World Cup, Brazil was considered a favorite to win, having won the competition four years earlier in Chile. However, there was a massive shock when they were knocked out in the group stages.

“Getting knocked out of the World Cup in England was the saddest moment of my life,” Pelé says. In the film, he tells a reporter: “I don’t intend to play in any more World Cups, because I’m not lucky in them. This is the second World Cup where I have been injured after only two games.”

He played one more World Cup – the 1970 tournament in Mexico, which Brazil won. He’s still the only player to have won three World Cup trophies.

And he admits it was hard for him to stay faithful.

Stores of Pelé’s alleged infidelities and wild romances were common in the tabloids. By 1958, he was a global icon and football’s first millionaire while still only a teenager. And his fans followed him everywhere so it’s hardly a secret that Pelé did not show the same faithfulness to everyone in his life as he did to his club Santos.

At one point in the film, a journalist asks Pelé whether he found it difficult to remain faithful with the amount of women flirting with him.

“In all honesty, it was,” he says, “I’ve had a few affairs, some of which resulted in children, but I only learned about them later. My first wife knew all about it, I never lied to anyone.”

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Nike Signs This 8-Year-Old Soccer Prodigy At Younger Age Than Messi And Neymar

Entertainment

Nike Signs This 8-Year-Old Soccer Prodigy At Younger Age Than Messi And Neymar

Nike has long been known to scout some of the world’s greatest sports talents, especially when it comes to the world of soccer. It began with Neymar, who signed with the multinational corporation at the age of 13. That trend continued with Real Madrid’s Rodrygo, who, at the tender age of 11, became Nike’s youngest-ever affiliated athlete after dazzling at a youth tournament in New York.

But the bar has been raised once again. This time with an 8-year-old player who considered the next great prospect in Brazilian soccer.

Brazilian football prodigy Kauan Basile has signed with Nike at just 8-years-old.

Kauan Basile is just 8-years-old and he’s already playing for the Santos’ U-9 indoor football team. But now he’s just made history as the youngest player ever to sign a deal with Nike.

“I am very happy with the opportunity to play for Santos, as well as the contract. I like to play football,” Kauan Basile told Gazeta Esportiva

According to reports, the contract with Nike is guaranteed over three years, and there’s an option to extend it for two more. He’s now the youngest player in the world to sign with Nike. Even at the end of his contract, Basile will still be younger than both Messi and another ex-Santos kid, Neymar, in signing his first deal at Nike.

Messi put pen to paper on his first Nike contract aged 15, while Neymar was 13.

The kid is generating tons of buzz worldwide.

Basile’s agents, Mengoni Sports, revealed the news of the Nike deal with a proud post on social media. They wrote: “Today Kauan broke the record of being the youngest player in the WORLD by signing a contract with Nike!”

The post went on to add that “He is pure talent! He has football in the soul, in his heart and in his DNA.”

The sports world has reacted with excitement, especially across Brazil where football plays reach God-like status.

Football runs through Basile’s blood.

Like so many of football’s greats, Basile has the tradition of football in his blood. Both his father and great-grandfather both played professionally. His father Andrezinho was on the roster for Corinthians during his playing days.

And his dad couldn’t be more proud of his son going on to such major success, saying he’s ready for superstardom. He said: “He is a player with an absurd will to win. He has a lot of technical quality.”

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