Thursday, October 14, 2010

Chile's 33 miners finally taste freedom - so who do they all support?

Unless you're an idiot living in a dark hole, you probably heard the miraculous news out of Chile as all 33 miners were finally brought to the surface after two months and nine days underground. Well, now that they are healthy and free, it's back to the pub on weekends to watch their clubs compete in the Chilean Primera DivisiĆ³n. Who do they all support? I thought you'd never ask.

We must start with Franklin Lobos, the former Chilean footballer and the 27th man lifted out of the mine. He bounced around quite often throughout his career - ten teams over fifteen years. His only title came in 1983 winning promotion to the first division with Cobresal - coincidentally a team from a mining region with a miner's helmet on the crest. Upon exiting the capsul, Lobos was presented with a signed ball by his daughter.

Omar Reygadas came out of the mine and was promptly given his club's flag - Colo Colo (pictured at the top). He is one of the twenty miners who support the Santiago side. The team sent an autographed jersey to each and every one of the twenty miners.

Jimmy Sanchez and eleven others support Universidad de Chile, based in the capital of Santiago as well.  After Sanchez wrote a letter to the players of his beloved club, the directors decided to award him and the eleven others lifetime entrance to the stadium for all matches. Sanchez also exited the capsule with the flag of his "most beloved club."

Daniel Herrera Campos was the sixteenth miner rescued. An avid supporter of Audax Italiano, he too received an autographed jersey from the club, pictured below with manager Omar Labruna. Upon hearing the news that the team was trapped and Daniel was a supporter, they signed the shirt and sent it to the mine shaft.

What are they returning to? Well, after 26 matches, Colo Colo sit top of the table with 57 points. Universidad de Chile are only three points back in 2nd place. And Audax Italiano sit 4th on 47 points.

I hope all these men enjoy what will surely be a lifetime of free football matches. 

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