What a show! Film producer and organiser of the DocMeeting Argentina, Rodrigo Vila, has invited me to go and see a match at the home ground of the football club with most caps in the world, Boca Juniors. The name is Bombonera and for the visitor it is a view of constant action. When we arrived the reserve team was playing, before the match the world champion female hockey players took a round on the pitch to be celebrated by the fans. A man who decades ago was playing for Boca got an applause and a silver plate for his contribution. And – the most spectacular and hearable – the 12th player behind one of the goals were singing and jumping up and down – they did so for the 90 minutes of the match.
The match itself was a one man show. Far from the style of Messi, who has often been written about on this site, Martin Palermo, number 9, is a typical centreforward. They don’t make them like that any longer… 37 years young, Palermo, THE darling of the Bombonera from the moment he entered the pitch saluting his audience, a real star, made all three goals that led to the victory of Boca against Colon. As the captain of the team, Palermo constantly encouraged his team mates, and was the first one to run to thank the man who gave him the assists to score the goals. Palermo even contributed to the entertainment by missing a penalty. A personality, a gentleman and a visit to a stadium and an experience that no tv transmission can beat. Palermo was brought to Boca Juniors by Diego Maradona, who else.
If I should argument for this text to be on a (documentary) film blog, I want to quote my host Vila, who said that the life of Palermo is like a film. From the good to the bad to the good… From scoring the most impossible goals, and then in the next moment breaking his leg or knee, and to him publicly demonstrating his private life by kissing a tattoo on his arm, when he scores, three times yesterday, a tattoo made to never forget his son who died at birth. Paleeeeeermo!