The language played a trick on ANFP president Pablo Milad. Where he said “mirage” to refer to the golden generation of Chilean football, he surely meant “oasis”. Both are in the desert and when they are seen in the distance, they fill the members of the caravan with hope. The difference is that the mirage is only an optical illusion and that the oasis is real, concrete, there is water to drink, dates to eat and shade to rest.
The golden generation existed, Chilean football took refuge there, drank and ate its fruits. So it was an oasis. But its existence has faded over the years and it is very close to disappearing completely., which brings it closer to a mirage. Now, looking back, you can’t classify it as just an occasional event, like some kind of planetary alignment that accidentally placed six or seven very competitive players, a couple, Arturo Vidal and Alexis Sánchez, in the top flight. of world football. Was it so? Did Chilean football distractedly cross the 2000s, stumble and come across an exceptional team without knowing where it came from? Of course not. Nothing is accidental.
Chile qualified for three of the four U-20 World Cups between 2000 and 2010: 2001, 2005 and 2007. In 1999 he was very close to qualification and a leadership conflict within the team (David Pizarro against Nicolás Córdova) ruined a team full of good players. Thinking only of the elements that played in the Adult World Cup, from 2001 who played the Under-20 World Cup in Argentina, the team with the little red lights, players like Jhonny Herrera, Ismael Fuentes and Rodrigo Millar went out, not standing in the top men’s team like Jaime Valdés and Hugo Droguett; Jorge Valdivia, Mauricio Pinilla, Marco Estrada, Mark González and Claudio Bravo arrived in 2003, which had a poor performance in the South American tournament in Uruguay, but Luis Jiménez, Eduardo Rubio and Gonzalo Fierro did not fully consolidate in the Red ; from 2005, who went to the World Cup in Holland, Matías Fernández, Marcelo Díaz, Gonzalo Jara, Luis Pedro Figueroa, Carlos Carmona and José Pedro Fuenzalida arrived and alternated in the adult team Pedro Morales, Carlos Villanueva , Juan Gonzalo Lorca and Fernando Meneses; From Canada 2007 came Mauricio Isla, Gary Medel, Arturo Vidal, Carlos Carmona again and Alexis Sánchez, and remained close to Juan Pinto Durán Cristhoper Toselli and Hans Martínez.
From the Sub 20 that failed with a crash in the American South of Venezuela in 2009 to the one that was local to Rancagua in 2019, no unbalancing player or undisputed starter has appeared. We can name Nicolás Castillo, Bryan Cortés, Felipe Mora, Valber Huerta, Gabriel Suazo, Lucas Alarcón, Diego Valencia… none who, so far, can eclipse their illustrious predecessors. Just accompany.
Thus, in ten years, Chilean football produced nearly twenty World Cup-level players and in the following ten years, none. This is not a coincidence or the product of a desert hallucination. Something started to go wrong at the cadet divisions, as the quality of young Chilean footballers, along with the pressures of their surroundings, ended up spoiling any prospect. To this we add the deformation of the representatives and the fact of wanting to play in Europe rather than in the First Division and to be millionaires before having a first salary. The oxen have been behind the cart for a long time.
For the same reason, it’s no surprise that the Chilean team’s most relevant appearance in ten years, Ben Brereton, being English and having no connection with our countryless with their formative structures, with the exception of their mother.
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