Tuesday, January 17, 2017

CA Independiente Greatest All-Time Team

Copa Libertadores 1972

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for the club.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

Club Atlético Independiente is considered one of Argentina's Big Five football clubs.   It has won a total of 18 titles, with 16 recognised by FIFA, including a record of seven Copa Libertadores won. Additionally, the club has won the Copa Interamericana three times, the Supercopa Sudamericana twice, the Recopa Sudamericana once, the Intercontinental Cup twice (1973 and 1984), and the Copa Sudamericana once in 2010.  Their team in the 1970's is considered one of the greatest ever club side in South America.  They won Copa Liberadores in a row, between 1972 and 1975. 
Copa Libertadores 1984

GK: Miguel Angel Santoro (Argentina)
Santoro was the starting keeper for Independiente during its golden years in the early 1970's.  He made 343 appearances for Independiente between 1962 and 1974, making him the goalkeeper with the highest number of appearances for the club. During his time with Independiente he won 10 titles, 4 league, 4 Copa Libertadores, the Copa Intercontinental and the Copa Interamericana. After representing La Albicelestes at the 1974 World Cup Santoro was sold to Spanish side Hércules CF where he played until his retirement in 1977.

GK: Fernando Bello  (Argentina)
Bello played for Independiente from 1933 to 1944. He was capped 12 times for La Albicelestes, winning the South American Cup(Copa America)in 1937 and 1945.

GK: Luis Islas (Argentina)
Islas played for many clubs in Argentina, Mexico and Spain, but better remembered for winning Recopa Sudamericana and Supercopa Libertadores with Independiente. He was capped 30 times. He was the substitute goalkeeper during the 1986 World Cup, which Argentina won.  He resigned the national team just before the 1990 World Cup because of refusing to be the backup keeper. Ironically, Nery Pumpido was injured so third goalkeeper Sergio Goycochea was put to the fore, and was selected the best goalkeeper of the tournament.  He was the starting goalkeeper for Argentina during the 1994 World Cup. 

RB: Néstor Clausen (Argentina)
In his career, he had two separated stints with Club Atlético Independiente.  He played for FC Sion and Racing Club in between.  He won the Copa Libertadores in 1984 with Independiente.  Capped 26 times for La Selección.  He was a part of the squad the WC in 1986.

RB: Roberto Ferreiro (Argentina)
Ferreiro began his playing career in 1958 with his local club Independiente. He went on to make 241 appearances for the club and won three league championships and two Copa Libertadores titles: 1964 and 1965. Towards the end of his career he made 55 appearances for River Plate between 1968 and 1970.  Ferreiro made a total of 20 appearances for Argentina between 1962 and 1966 and competed at the 1966 Fifa World Cup, and played in the controversial England clash.

CB: Francisco Sá  (Argentina)
Sá holds the record for the most Copa Libertadores titles, he won six; 4 consecutive titles with Club Atlético Independiente between 1972 and 1975, and a further 2 with Boca Juniors in 1977 and 1978.  He also won two Intercontinental Cup for both clubs. After leaving Boca in 1981 Sá played for Gimnasia de Jujuy for one season before his retirement in 1982.  Capped 12 times.
Francisco Sá  
CB: Enzo Trossero (Argentina)
In 1975, he arrived at Independiente and stayed with club until 1986, but he had a loan stint with FC Nantes in France. During that time he won three Argentine titles (1977–78 and 83), a Copa Libertadores (1984) and an Intercontinental Cup (1984). He was named as one of the club's best defender during Independiente's 90th anniversary. Capped 22 times.  He was an unused sub at the WC in 1982.

CB: Hugo Villaverde (Argentina)
Villaverde started his professional playing career in 1973 with home town club Colón de Santa Fe at the age of 19. In 1975 he joined Independiente where he became a key player throughout the 1970s and 1980s. He won four league titles, the 1984 Copa Libertadores and Copa Intercontinental with the club. Villaverde played 6 times for the Argentina national team in 1979, but never returned to the international scene after suffering an injury in friendly match against Scotland.

CB: Ruben Navarro (Argentina)
Navarro joined the Buenos Aires side Independiente in 1952 and had his professional debut for the club in 1954. He first played as a forward but made a name for himself playing as defender.  He is mainly remembered for winning two consecutive Copa Libertadores titles with Independiente (1964, 1965). Capped 32 times for Argentina national football team between 1960 and 1963.He went to the 1962 World Cup and appeared in two matches at the tournament, captaining the side against England and Bulgaria.

LB:  Ricardo Pavoni (Uruguay)
Affectionately known as "El Chivo",  he was considered one of Uruguay's top left backs.  He was a part of the great Independiente of the 1970's that won 5 Copa Libertadores He was an idol at the club. In Uruguay, he played for Defensor. He was capped 13 times. He was a member of the 1974 World Cup team in West Germany.
Ricardo Pavoni

DM/CM: Claudio Marangoni  (Argentina)
Marangoni played with Chacarita Juniors, San Lorenzo and Sunderland in England and Huracán before joining Club Atlético Independiente in 1982. He won three major titles with the club, the 1983 Metropolitano followed by the Copa Libertadores and Copa Intercontinental in 1984. In 1988 he left Independiente to join Boca Juniors where he won a further two international tournaments, the Supercopa Sudamericana 1989 and the Recopa Sudamericana 1990. Capped 8 times.

DM: Ricardo Giusti  (Argentina)
During his career Giusti also played for Unión de Santa Fe, Argentinos Juniors and Newell's Old Boys, but he had most of his success with Independiente where he captained the team. He was named as the club's best midfielder during Independiente's 90th anniversary. He won the FIFA World Cup with Argentina in 1986 and was also a runner-up in the 1990 FIFA World Cup. With 53 caps, he played a part in 5 major tournaments.

CM: Antonio Sastre (Argentina)
Sastre played most of his career for Club Atlético Independiente and São Paulo of Brazil. He is one of the 24 players inducted into the Argentine Football Association Hall of Fame. Sastre was an all-round midfielder who could play well almost anywhere on the pitch due to his intelligence and versatility.

CM: Miguel Ángel Raimondo  (Argentina)
Raimondo played for Rosario Central and Atlanta before joining Independiente in 1969. It was with Independiente that he had most of his success as a player, while he was there the club won two league championships, three (of their four in a row) Copa Libertadores titles, two Copa Interamericanas and an Intercontinental Cup. Raimondo was selected as the Player of the Year of Argentina in 1974. In 1975 Raimondo joined River Plate, he was only with the club for one season but in that time he helped the club to win both of the Argentine league titles that year.

AM/CM: José Omar Pastoriza (Argentina)
El Pato ("The Duck") Pastoriza played with Colón de Santa and Racing Club before joining Independiente, winning 3 first division tournaments and a Copa Libertadores. In 1971 he was awarded the Olimpia de Oro, which is given to the Argentine footballer of the year.  After the 1972 season he transferred to French AS Monaco, where he retired as a player. Capped 18 times.

AM: Ricardo Bochini (Argentina)
Bochini was Diego Maradona's idol.  He was a legend at Independiente.  He joined the club during the middle of the club's 4 straight Copa Libertadores victory.  In 1973, he made his first big role with the club against Juventus at the Intercontinental Club.  He scored a winning goal.  In 1984, Bochini would lead them to another Copa Libertadores and the Intercontinental Cup.  He never got his opportunity with the national team.  In 1986, Maradona insisted the inclusion of then, 32 years old Ricardo Bochini.  He only played 5 minutes against Belgium in the semi-final.
Ricardo Bochini

LW: Daniel Bertoni (Argentina)
Bertoni started playing in Argentine's second division for Quilmes in 1972. After one year he was transferred to first division's team Independiente where he played alongside Ricardo Bochini and won one national and 3 Copa Libertadores. Breton also played for Sevilla, Fiorentina and Napoli.

FW/LW: Raimundo Orsi (Argentina/Italy)
Orsi was considered one of the greatest forwards in Argentina's history.  He started his career with Indpendiente in Argentina before lured away to play for Juventus. he won 5 league titles with Juventus.  Later in his career, he would play in Brazil and Chile.  He was capped by Argentina 12 times winning a silver medal at the 1928 Olympics.  He switched to play for Italy in 1929.  He was a star player as Italy won the WC in 1934.

FW/AM: Sergio Aguero (Argentina)
El Kun became the youngest player ever to play in the Argentine Primera Division in 2003 when he played for Independiente.  In 2006, Atletico Madrid broke their transfer record to sign him.  He rewarded the club with the Europa Cup in 2010.  In 2011, he joined Manchester City. Again, he rewarded the club with an added time goal that won the Preimership for Manchester City's first ever title. At the time of writing, he had 77 caps.  
Sergio Aguero

FW: Ernesto Grillo  (Argentina)
Grillo started with Indpendiente before moving to play in Italy. He played three seasons with AC Milan, winning 1958-1958 Serie A title. He returned to Argentina in 1960 to play for Boca Juniors, where he played 101 matches and scored 11 goals in all competitions and won three league titles in 1962, 1964 and 1965.  Capped 21 times. The highlight of Grillo's career came on 14 May 1953 in a match versus England, when he scored a legendary goal for Argentina. He also helped Argentina winning the 1955 South American Championship(Copa America).

FW: Jorge Burruchaga (Argentina)
Burruchaga was capped 57 times. He was known for scoring the winning goal in the final of the 1986 World Cup. For domestic career, he was a part of Independiente that won the Metropolitano 1983, the Copa Libertadores and the Intercontinental Cup in 1984. He also played seven years for Nantes. With Valenciennes, he was involved in a bribing scandal involving a league match against Olympique de Marseille on 20 May 1993.  He was subsequently given a suspended six months sentence. He returned to Argentina for his last spell in Independiente, when he won a Supercopa Sudamericana and a Recopa Sudamericana both in 1995.
Jorge Burruchaga

FW: Vicente De la Mata (Argentina)
De la Mata emerged from the youth team of Central Córdoba in 1936, he was soon signed by Independiente where he spent 14 seasons, scoring 151 goals in 362 games for the club. He was part of three championship winning teams and played alongside Antonio Sastre and Arsenio Erico. He is fondly remembered as one of the club's greatest ever players. Capped 13 times between 1937 and 1946, scoring six goals. He won Copa América on three occasions, each won by Argentina. In 1937 he scored both goals in the 2–0 win over Brazil in the final. He was also part of the squads that won the tournament in 1945 and 1946.

ST: Manuel Seoane  (Argentina)
He was Independiente's 2nd all-time topscorer after Arsenio Erico and 5th amongst Primera División topscorers. He finished as the Primera División top scorer on three occasions (1922, 1926 and 1929) during his career. He also won several titles with Independiente, including the Argentine championships of 1922 and 1926.  Seoane played for Argentina between 1924 and 1929, appearing in 4 Copa Américas (1924, 1925, 1927 & 1929).[5] He was part of the winning team in 1925 1927 and 1929 and he was also the top scorer in 1925 with 6 goals.

ST: Hector Yazalde (Argentina)
He started his career with Club Atlético Independiente.  He moved to Europe and played for Sporting.  In 1973-1974, He scored 46 goals in one single season with Sporting Clube de Portugal, being awarded that season's European Golden Shoe.  The following season, he scored 30 goals and won Europeaan Silver Show.  He earned 10 caps, scoring two goals at the World Cup Finals in 1974.

ST: Arsenio Erico (Paraguay)
Arsenio Erico is considered the best Paraguayan footballer of all time.  He started his club career with Club Nacional of Paraguay in 1930, but better known for his career in Argentina. He is the all-time highest goalscorer in the Argentine first division, with 295 goals, all of them scored with Independiente between 1933 and 1946. He also played for Huracán. He was Alfredo Di Stefano's idol.
Arsenio Erico

Honorable mention
Diego Forlan, Aníbal Tarabini, Raúl Bernao, Miguel Lopez, Pedro Monzón, Jorge Olguín, Luis Artime, Gabriel Milito, Rubén Galván,  Daniel Monyenegro, 

Squad Explanation
-- Gabriel Milito appeared in many all-time lists, but I selected older players over him. Club Atlético Independiente has too many great players in the 1970's and 1980's.
-- I do not know much about Miguel Lopez.
-- Sergio Aguero did not play enough games for them, but he was one of the few all-time greats from the modern era.  He was also the youngest ever player for them, which was a record and an achievement.


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