João Saldanha was the creator of Brazil 70
Joao Saldanha could perfectly be the protagonist of a science fiction film according to the hectic life lived. He was the coach of what was possibly the best team in history, Pele's Brazil 1970. Although he had them and very stiff with the Brazilian star.
Joao Saldanha, From journalist to coach of a legendary team
Joao Saldanha, It was a frustrated project of a soccer player as evidenced by his brief passage through the ranks of the team of his life, Botafogo. Later, He became from an early age in a famous Brazilian journalist, very committed to politics and sports. Especially known were his criticisms of politicians of the time and the players and coaches of the moment. His verbal voracity where he did not leave a puppet with a head reached the point of calling the president of his country a murderer.
Players, coaches or managers were subject to terrible criticism every time Joao Saldanha He saw that things were out of the pot that he considered appropriate. A José María García Brazilian to the exaggerated (the Spanish not yet reached these extremes) which for years he kept the country in suspense always causing trouble, conflict and gaining attention with his controversial speeches to all citizens.
A peculiar character, different, different from the rest
They say that he always carried a revolver made of Mexican gold (Colt brand 32) in his power always at his side. And it is that the scandals of this journalist were a constant, as pursuit, gun ahead, Botafogo goalkeeper, Manga, He is accusing him of taking bribes. Very committed to the peasant struggle against the power, his great moment in world football came when Botafogo, sick of his fierce criticism and insults, he offered the coaching job 1957 to lead the team to the top. Without thinking, Joao Saldanha accepted the position despite his zero experience on the bench and began to write his legend in football.
With Botafogo, and the pattern of play Saldanha would. Fast football, fast and touch, with outstanding players like Didi, Nilson or Garrincha who would be crowned league champion in his first year. All this before rejecting in 1959 continue the club, to return to the media, his other great passion.
It wouldn't be until seven years later when Joao Saldanha I would lead an ensemble again. The bad image of Brazil in the The World 66, eliminated first of change by Eusebio Portugal, It was a source of criticism for many “wick” Brazilian. And who better to put out the fire, the most critical, which he threw more fuel to the fire.
Upon arrival in charge of the selection revolutionized “canarinha” and the world of football. He opted for a Botafogo player base, Santos and Cruzeiro and decided to give priority to the talent on tactics. A simple 4-2-4 where the key was simple: let the good up and freely. It was like this, such as Pelé, Rivelino, Tostao Jairzinho the triunfaron.
Without 9 fixed, but with much arrival mediapuntas continuously they associated. The touch was the main premise, and the arrival of the sides, reconverted often extreme surprise with which to break the tightest defenses.
With good players and an idea so clear and easy to watch football, The results were not delayed. The team managed to qualify for the World Mexico 70 with an immaculate qualifying phase with six wins in as many games and 23 goals for and only 2 against. further, numerous friendly cattles to European powers with much credit they spoke very clearly the strength of this team.
The sounded controversy between Saldanha and Pelé
But nevertheless, Joao Saldanha could not see the dream of playing the World Cup fulfilled. His controversial character caused him numerous problems. discussions as strong as one with Flamengo coach, Yustrich, which he was to point the revolver at a training “Fla”, or with the country's president, which he called publicly murderer.
And if that was not enough, Saldanha and Pelé did not have a good relationship. The Brazilian star as he counts in the Netflix documentary named ‘Pelé’ Saldanha was a man who did not know about soccer in the opinion of the considered ‘King of soccer’. For his part, Saldanha dropped the bomb on Pelé whom he accused of “suffer from a marked myopia that made it impossible to locate the ball in night games, besides hip problems that made it difficult to move correctly”. Some problems that by the way took their toll on the Brazilian star in his old age.
all, before releasing his famous phrase “I'm not a donkey, nor foolish, nor optometrist”. And it is that O Rei was never the right eye of Joao Saldanha, He is accusing him of playing listless and just to save themselves from its deep economic bankruptcy.
I was going to exclude him from the World Cup, something that did not like the bosses of a Brazil that was in an iron and hard dictatorship by that already distant 1970. Pressures from the dictator Emilio garrastuzu for introducing Pelé to the World Cup ended with the dismissal of Joao Saldanha and the arrival of Wolf Zagallo in charge for dessert to be champion with one of the best teams in history. A team created by Saldanha himself.
In any case, the merit of Saldanha will remain forever in the retina of all. In 1990, this controversial character said goodbye in Rome at the age of 73 years. Hasta siempre.