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The best? Football, alcohol and mythical phrases by George Best


'The best' (Contra) is the autobiography that the Manchester United footballer wrote with the collaboration of the journalist Roy Collins. A book about the brutal transition from fame to ostracism

All clubs -big, medium and small- have their myths from the days before the advent of global television and the Internet.

The local parish even accepts comparing them with what until then were the two great references: Maradona and Pelé.

There will always be someone who will ensure that the player in question had the same level of talent as the Argentine or Brazilian star, but that injuries, bad luck or life in general had prevented him from going further.

In recent years, a poster has been popularized -and marketed- that reads: Pelé good (well, in English);

Maradona better (better);

George Best, in a play on words that took advantage of the surname of the Northern Irish striker to say that he had been the best.

And it is likely that, for many Manchester United fans and fans in general, it really was.

Best's appearance in 1963 helped recover a team that five years earlier had suffered a plane crash in which 23 people died, including 8 footballers.

In 1968, the Red Devils would lift their first European Cup.

Best was a guy loaded with talent, charismatic, brash and brave.

He radiated a magnetism that brought him closer to the figure of a rock star.

They called him, in fact, the fifth Beatle.

After his withdrawal, he left phrases that dazzled lovers of the cursed: “I spent a lot of money on cars, women and alcohol.

I simply wasted the rest”, “in 1969 I gave up alcohol and women, they were the worst 20 minutes of my life” or “every time I enter a place there are 60 people who want to invite me to drink, and I don't know to say no".

Those ironic and witty statements hid under their sense of humor a human drama that ended up taking him by storm in 2005, when he was 59 years old.

The best

(Contra), is the autobiography that Best wrote with the collaboration of the journalist Roy Collins.

A book that talks about football, and also about alcohol, about playing for the sake of playing -given his insouciance towards sports-, about incidents with the police, about playing a game under a threat on behalf of the IRA, about the feeling of unreality when seen on television, lovers or the brutal passage from fame to ostracism.

A text in which the distance that irony and humor impose on life is sometimes reduced with tenderness and passion.

The life of Best, who had a state funeral in Belfast that brought together half a million people and that someone defined as "the greatest relief of grief ever known."

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Source: elparis

All sports articles on 2023-01-09

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