10 August, 2022

“The day that Elche enjoyed a soccer magician in the World Cup Spain 82”

Talk about El Salvador in Elche, is talking about Mágico González, more than the beaches and the gangs.

By Oscar Iraheta

Spain – Fate for now has brought me to this place, where all its inhabitants remember El Salvador for that historic win in a World Cup in Spain 82 and for having met the great Jorge Mágico González. A 40 YEARS OF HISTORY.

that tuesday 15 June 1982, Santos Muriel lived two emotions that had him on edge. He had in his hands the entrance ticket to see a World Cup soccer match for the first time in his life, pero también estaba su esposa ingresada en un hospital, about to give birth to her first daughter: Belinda.

The man of Spanish nationality decided to give priority to football and witnessed the biggest win in history in a World Cup competition. Hungary crushed El Salvador 10-1.

Santos is passionate about soccer and the game of petanque, that's why he remembers that day very well. And not so much for the win, otherwise, because the world of football and especially Spain, he surrendered and admired to overflow a soccer magician: Jorge El Magico Gonzalez.

“That guy was a beast, every time the ball came to him he marveled, but couldn't do much to change the score, but all of us who were sitting there said it: Who, what is his name, It's very nice to play", Santos recounts while enjoying watching his grandson play soccer, leo from 7 years.

On the night of that historic day, Santos was a father for the first time and the man who worked as a truck driver all his life, ended with two satisfactions in football and family life.

Also Jose Coves Sempere, of 67 years, tells what he remembers of the historic day. It relates that, with his wife, they had bought the three vouchers to watch the games that would be played in Elche and Alicante, corresponding to the group 3 (C) where was the Argentina of Diego Maradona, Belgium, El Salvador and Hungary.

“The score was the least, most of us were a neutral public and that is why any marker was subtracted, the desire to go was to witness the event. A World Cup is not always played in your town. But our surprise that day was to see Magic play, nobody knew him and we never would have imagined that, all the public said it and in more football gatherings it continues to be remembered ", Joseph expresses.

After that hit, El Salvador traveled to Alicante, a seaside town 30 kilometers from Elche where he would play with Argentina where he lost 2-0. But 4 days after, returned to the Martínez Valero stadium to play against Belgium where he fell with the score of 1 -0.

“Those two games were also the showcase for El Mágico because he stood out more, he was fast and had a beastly way to unbalance players like Passarella, Kempes and Maradona, It was a real spectacle and satisfaction to see him play”, Joseph narrates, who now lives in the retired countryside after dedicating himself to ranching.

But luckily for the Spanish, that player who amazed football in the World Cup 82, months later he would arrive in Spain to play for Cádiz F C where he continued to amaze the world of football.

Currently, the Martínez Valero stadium still exists and is the headquarters of Elche C.F.. A first division team that is not among the first places, but he is very supported by the people of Elche. It was inaugurated in 1976 and for now they are doing renovations for the next tournament that starts next August.

Talk about El Salvador in Elche, is talking about Mágico González, more than the beaches and the gangs.