The world of football is already preparing for the party: on October 23, Edson Arantes do Nascimento, the King Skin , complete 80 years of life. To magazine SCOREBOARD, only three decades younger and with an inseparable history than that of shirt 10 – suffice it to say that the inaugural edition, from March 70, had Pelé on the cover and came with a toast, a coin with the effigy of the ace – prepared a very special edition, history, which brings a compilation of great reports about the King of Football, chosen and commented by himself. From now until the big day, PLACAR will publish daily on its website some of the reports from the September issue, which is on newsstands and available for devices iOS and also Android. Good reading!
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Every story has a beginning. Pelé’s began in the interior of São Paulo. At the age of 13, he started to work for children and adolescents at Bauru Atlético Clube. The BAC boys gave birth to Baquinho. The team lasted only two years – enough time to become two-time champion of the Bauru League, with the right to several victories and great exhibitions, mainly by the withered Edson Arantes do Nascimento, the son of Dondinho and Dona Celeste.
In February 1989, PLACAR recovered the first steps of the King and the other ten boys in that group in the striped shirt. Osmar, the captain, had become director of Ferrovia Paulista SA (Fepasa); Grillo was the manager of a fabric factory in Rio de Janeiro; Maninho, supervisor of Banco do Brasil, among other such different destinations. The report, written by Kátia Perin, with the collaboration of Edson Rossi, won the Esso Award (delivered from 1955 to 2014, it was considered the biggest award in Brazilian journalism). In the next pages, you reread the emotional opening text of the original publication and recall some of the photos that help narrate the kickoffs of the greatest footballer of all time.
How some kids from Bauru made history with football that was pure magic and became the main fun of the weekends
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(Posted on February 10, 1989)
The first idea was to form a youth team to do, with boys, what the professionals could no longer do: art with the ball at their feet. João Fernandes, director and provider of the Bauru Atlético Clube, the BAC, invited Waldemar de Britto, right-back of the 1934 Brazilian team, to be the coach. And in September 1953, the Diário de Bauru published an advertisement, inviting children from the city – 345 kilometers from São Paulo – to participate in the sieve. One hundred peladeiros from 8 to 16 years presented themselves. Waldemar sat at the top of the stands and chose the best 25 boys from there.
Less than a month later, on October 29, Baquinho (boys from BAC) debuted against Gérson França FC: 3 to 3. In the next match, however, the team started to show what they would be capable of. He beat São Paulo by 21-0, one goal every three minutes. A withered little boy, who looked more like a mascot, was one of the top scorers with seven goals: Pelé. At the time, coach Waldemar was proud to find that if another team played alone against wooden stakes, it would be difficult to achieve the same result.
But there was no limit to Baquinho. Between friendlies and the 1954 Liga Bauruense championship, he played 33 matches and scored 148 goals, an average of 4.5 per game. Six rounds from the final, he was champion. As a present for the title, Baquinho played in São Paulo, in the preliminary of Associação Desportiva Araraquarense (ADA) x America of São José do Rio Preto. He thrashed Flamengo in Vila Mariana by 12 to 1. After he left the field, half the audience left: the main match could not be better.
He reached his second championship in 1955. But the following year, the team disbanded. Pelé also played for a few months on an indoor soccer team and traveled to Santos. Childhood had passed. Soon the club ended its activities in the sport. Later, he ended up dividing the field in half – the setting for so many stories from Baquinho – to build five pools. Today they attract more boys than the ball. On the restaurant wall, a yellowed poster with the team of April 6, 1955 was all that remained as a reminder of the birth of a king.
Posted in SCOREBOARD June 2020, edition 1467
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