Junior’s idols who passed through Unión Magdalena

Teófilo Gutiérrez is poised, at 37, to become one of many players with a successful past in Junior who will eventually become the blaugrana of Unión Magdalena – the rojiblancos’ arch-rival in the traditional coastal classic – in the final stages of their placed career.

If his arrival becomes reality, the striker from Barranquilla will join a list of illustrious footballers who decided to burn their last ‘patterns’ by shaking hands with ‘Ciclón Bananero’, where – although it seems strange – they will welcome with open arms are received regardless of their past as ‘sharks’.

And it is that on this side of the country it is not a sin to go from a blaugrana to a rojiblanco and vice versa. Although there is a clear sports rivalry that makes the classic hot matches, the coastal rivalry is not experienced in the same way as in Argentina, where the arrival of a great figure or a player to his classic opponent, even if it is in the twilight of his career would be considered a great betrayal.

There is a certain brotherhood here that makes Junior fans want teams like Unión, Real Cartagena, Jaguares and anything that smells of the Caribbean coast to do well, because they are brothers from the same region. Of course, the moment they face each other, that rivalry is clearly revealed that marks that it is forbidden to lose in the coastal classics.

Perhaps the barrabravas of both teams think otherwise, who unfortunately faced stone, stick and dagger every time they meet. They are overflowing with what the football party is and usually star in strong acts of violence just by seeing a different shirt than theirs.

Cases like the one that could occur with ‘Teo’ have abounded throughout history. Junior legends who went to play on the other side of the river, such as Hermenegildo Segrera, Raúl Peñaranda (author of Junior’s first goal in a Copa Libertadores), Víctor Ephanor, Juan Manuel Tutino, Gabriel Berdugo, Mario Coll, Joaquín Pardo, Rolando Campbell, Juan Carlos Abello, Oswaldo ‘Nene’ Mackenzie, Víctor Pacheco, Iván Valenciano and Carlos Vilarete, James Sánchez, just to name a few.

And there are also those who started as azulgranas and then moved on to Junior, also leaving an indelible impression, such as Alfredo Arango, Pedro Vásquez, Omar Alfredo Galván, Óscar Bolaño, Didí Valderrama, César Calero, Orlando ‘el Salvaje’ Rojas, Carlos ‘ el Pibe’ Valderrama, Luis ‘Puya’ Zuleta, José ‘Mono’ Herrera, Luis Fernández and Erwin ‘Alpinito’ Carrillo, among many others.

There are also special cases. Players from Barranquilla who for X or Y reasons did not start their career in Junior, but first went through the banana team to later successfully attract the rojiblanca, as is the case – to name just three – of Jesús ‘Toto’ Rubio , who played in the Unión in 1969 and even participated in a Copa Libertadores, to reach the rojiblanco team later in 1980; Alex Comas, who joined the ‘Ciclón’ on loan from Medellín in the first semester of 1992 and was taken over by Junior that same year, but for the second semester, and Luis Narváez, who made his professional debut as a Barça player, in 2004 , later to fulfill his dream of becoming ‘Shark’ in 2011. In 2019, after eight years with ‘Curramba’ and six titles as rojiblanco, ‘Lucho’ returned to Unión Magdalena to start a more than decent career as a professional.

Teófilo hopes to complete his signing for the Union in the coming days to debut on the fourth date, right before his beloved Junior. If it happens, it’s bound to be a special match with plenty of morbidity, meaning you’ll see the striker from La Chinita face off against the ‘Shark’ in a coastal classic.

Source: El heraldo