Omar Sívori : El Cabezón

Enrique Omar Sívori was born in San Nicolas (Argentina) on October 2nd, 1935. He started kicking the ball in the town theatre. Then he got to CA River Plate of Renato Cesarini, former player of Juventus FC. Sivori was soon nicknamed "El Cabezón" (because of his big head) or "el gran zurdo" (because of his sensational left foot shot).
With the "blancorojos" of Buenos Aires Sivori became Argentina champion three times in a row, from 1955 to 1957. Again in 1957 with the Argentine selection he won the Copa America (the South American nations' championship) played in Peru with Maschio and Angelillo in the unrestrainable central attacking trio that was named "the angels with dirty faces".

Shortly after Sivori moved to Italy and to Juventus FC to which the player was indicated by Cesarini himself. He was paid a good 160 million lire, an incredible figure at that time that allowed River Plate managers to renovate a whole stand (that now holds his name) of their stadium.
Shortly after his arrival in Torino, Sivori showed all his talent. He was not able to play in an ordinary way, he was born to amaze, to amuse and to have fun. Incommensurable with his dribblings and his feints, he scored and made his team-mates score, cheating his opponents with his socks down, his tunnels and his hot-blooded and disrespectful character. And his character was really one of his limits: in his twelve years in Italy he piled up a good 33 days' disqualification.
He played for Juventus FC for 8 seasons, won 3 scudetti (Serie A titles) and 3 Italy Cups scoring 167 goals in 253 matches. In 1960 with 28 goals he was the top scorer of the Italian championship. In 1961 "France Football" gave him the prestigious "Ballon d'Or". In 1965 Sivori moved to SS Napoli where with the Brazilian player José Altafini threw all the Parthenopean supporters into raptures. He ended his career also because of a heavy disqualification just before the end of the 1968-69 championship and returned to Argentina.
Once naturalized Italian, Omar Sivori wore also the Italian selection shirt nine times, scored 8 goals and played the unlucky world championship in Chile in 1962. Afterwards he worked also as a talent-scout for Juventus FC in South America, and he was also a biting, as usual, TV commentator. Omar Sivori died from pancreas cancer when he was 69 on February 18th, 2005. He died in San Nicolas, a city about 200 km far from Buenos Aires, where he was born and where he lived for a long time. There he had also a farm named "Juventus" after the team he loved most. [source : Sivori]

Omar Sivori Pictures

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