The legend Eusebio who was known in the Iranian sport community as "palang siah" and "morvarid siah" has passed away due to heart failure problems. He was 71.
Close Iranian Encounbters of Eusebio Kind
Football club Benfica with Eusebio as captain and leader travelled to Iran and played two friendly games at Amjadieh stadium in 1971. Benfica was accompanied with all its great players. The first match was against Persepolis FC and Benfica won 4-0, but surprisingly the game was tied 0-0 until about the 70th minute or so. Then, the storm began with Eusebio's first goal. The view was Benfica was playing cat and mouse with Persepolis. I remember that game so well. I watched it on TV. It was held on a rainy day. Benfica played her second friendly against Pas club and won 2-0.
In 1972, Team Melli played against Portugal in Brazil during what the Brazilians had called "Minicopa," which in Persian language was translated as "jam jahani koochak." In English, the tournamane t was referred to as the Independence Cup -- due to Brazil's 150th anniversary of her independence from Portugal. Iran lost 3-0 to Portugal. Eusebio was there too and scored the first goal.
Side Note: For World Cup 2014-bound travelers, the match was played at the main stadium in Recife.
I am sure our football veterans like Parviz Ghlichkhani, Ali Parvin, and others will think about their encounter with Eusebio.
Eusebio also appeared at zendeh-yad Fereydoun Farrokhzad's show. Do you remember Fereydoun Farrokhzad's wooden board with a hole in it and his then famous 5-shoot competition? Eusebio had brought a pair of boots to give az a prize to the winner. Believe it or not, Habibulah Roshanzadeh's young son was the only one able to pass the ball through the hole.
I always liked Eusebio. He was a true ambassador of football. His presence will be greatly missed this summer in Brazil during World Cup 2014.
agha Eusebio, rohet shad bad.
Credit: I stole the images from an online forum that I found after I searched on Google for Benfica matches in Tehran. After I saved the images, I closed the window and cannot find the forum. So, my hat down to folks on that forum who posted the pictures.