Portal:Football in Argentina

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The Football in Argentina Portal

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Football is the most popular sport in Argentina and has more registered participants than any other sport played in the country. 90% of Argentines declare support of an Argentine football club.

Football was introduced to Argentina in the latter half of the 19th century by British immigrants in Buenos Aires. The first Argentine league was contested in 1891, making it one of the oldest leagues outside Great Britain and the Argentine Football Association (AFA) was formed in 1893, being the eighth oldest in the world.

Argentina is one of the seven countries to have won the football World Cup, having done so in 1978 and 1986. They have also won the continental tournament Copa América on fourteen occasions. At youth level; the Argentina Olympic football team has won two Gold Medals and the Argentina Under-20 team has won a record six FIFA U-20 World Cups. There has been a national women's league in Argentine since 1991 and Argentina women's team qualified for the FIFA Women's World Cup for the first time in 2007.

Selected article

Club Atlético Independiente is a popular Argentine sports club best known for its football team, established in 1905. Based in Avellaneda, Greater Buenos Aires area. Known as "El Rojo" ("The Red"), "Los Diablos Rojos" ("The Red Devils"), "Rey de Copas" ("King of Cups") or "Orgullo Nacional" ("National Pride"), Independiente has won 14 Argentine championships, placing them third behind to River Plate and Boca Juniors, 7 Copa Libertadores titles, of which an unequalled series of 4 straight wins from 1972 to 1975, and a total of 15 international titles - including 3 Copa Interamericanas, and the 1973 and 1984 Intercontinental Cup.

Independiente's eternal rival Racing has its stadium only a couple of hundred meters from Independiente's. These 2 clubs form the colourful Avellaneda derby, that divides the country in two. Many great Argentine players have worn the red outfit. Daniel Bertoni and Jorge Burruchaga became World Champions in 1978 and 1986 respectively with Argentina, but Independiente fans remember more fondly Ricardo "el Bocha" Bochini, who was a champion in 1986 as well, even though he played only a few minutes in the entire World Cup.

Selected picture

Lionel Messi competing in the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in a match against Brazil
Credit: Flickr user Andre Kiwitz

Lionel Messi competing in the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in the semi-final match against Brazil. The Argentina national football team won the tournament (beating Nigeria 1–0 in the final) and collected Olympic Gold medals for the second time in succession.

Selected biography

Alfredo di Stéfano (born 4 July 1926 in Barracas, Buenos Aires) is an Argentine - Spanish former footballer and coach. He is most associated with Real Madrid and was instrumental in their domination of the European Cup of Champions during the 1950s, a period in which the club won the trophy in five consecutive seasons from 1956. Di Stéfano also played international football for Argentina, Colombia, and Spain.

Di Stéfano, nicknamed Saeta rubia ("Blond arrow"), was a powerful forward with great stamina, tactical versatility, and vision. He could also play almost always anywhere on the pitch and despite being most well-known as a forward, was great in defense. He is currently the 3rd highest scorer in the history of Spain's top division, with 228 goals in 329 games, behind Hugo Sánchez (234 goals) and Telmo Zarra (251). Di Stéfano is also Real Madrid's highest league goalscorer of all time, with 216 goals in 282 league matches between 1953 and 1964.

In November 2003, to celebrate UEFA's Jubilee, he was selected as the Golden Player of Spain by the Royal Spanish Football Federation as their most outstanding player of the past 50 years. He was named by Pelé as one of the "top 125 greatest living footballers" in March 2004. Di Stéfano was voted fourth, behind Pelé, Diego Maradona, and Johan Cruijff, in a vote organised by the French weekly magazine France Football consulting their former Ballon D'Or winners to elect the Football Player of the Century

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