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Name Alfredo Di Stefano
Spelling Alfredo Stefano Di Stefano Laulhe
  The Blond Arrow
Gender Male
Birthplace Buenos Aires
Born 1926 07 04
Die 2014 07 07
Ethnic Argentinian
Job Argentinian Footballer
Desc Alfredo Di Stefano, who represented Los Blancos between 1953-64, scored 216 goals in 282 appearances for the Spanish giants, leading most fans to praise the Buenos Aires-born attacker as the club’s biggest icon


Org Argentina National Team
Club as Player Real Madrid
  River Plate
1952 07 16
Real Madrid played against Alfredo Di Stefano’s Millonarios at the Estadio Nemesio Camacho El Campin in Colombia
1963 08 26
Ever since they became global icons, footballers have always been the target of criminals and terrorists. In 1963, one of the finest players ever to lace up his boots, Real Madrid’s Alfredo Di Stefano, was kidnapped in order to attract publicity for the Armed Forces of National Liberation (FALN) campaign against government corruption in Venezuela. After 56 hours, on August 26, he was released unharmed.

2008 06 10 Retrieve

[Alfredo Di Stefano on today’s football] It has changed a bit, of course. The speed and all that. But let me tell you something: in the olden times, let’s say the year, I don’t know, in the Sixties for instance, we would eat a plate of spaghetti and run out onto the pitch. Then people started saying ‘they’re too full’, meaning you’d get bloated like a pig if you ate spaghetti. But this shows you those guys were clever because nowadays all the medical experts recommend pasta for athletes and footballers because you digest it slowly

We must always strive to improve, little by little. The electric eye thing they want to use - it could save time. The other day I saw this goal and the keeper was complaining. I thought it had gone in but the linesman waved [to indicate it had stayed] out. So there’s a big fuss to consult the rule book

Do you know how many rules there are in football? He knows because I told him. But nobody knows. There are 17 rules. That’s it. Everyone talks about football and nobody remembers this simple fact

[He knows because I told him. But nobody knows. There are 17 rules. That’s it. Everyone talks about football and nobody remembers this simple fact] I always enjoyed training, sweating and learning. I still don’t know. I’ve always been a team player, that’s all. One for all and all for one

[When asked him to pick modern players he rates and he shrugs his shoulders in exasperation] I have many friends! Maybe I forget one name and then they see this list and think: ‘This Di Stefano, the whore that gave birth to him … ‘. [Then he grins] You know, they’re always busting my balls with this - ‘pick a favourite, pick the best’ - that once I said ‘OK, here’s five names and then I’m saying no more: Muñoz, Moreno, Pedernera, Labruna and Lousta’

[He claims he learnt to play by simply watching the likes of Francisco Varallo, the legendary Boca striker] There was no TV back then so living near the ground and watching them was the only way

[Even with regard to positions or styles of play, Di Stefano shuns labels, stating categorically that he has] played everywhere, even in goal once. [Amadeo] Carrizo got injured and there were no changes so I had to get in there. It was against Boca, but I didn’t have to save because they never even got near our goal. We won 1-0

[He laughs, and carries on laughing when he observes] He laughs, and carries on laughing when he observes

[But the quote he truly values, he says, is in a friend’s office] He has a beautiful ball, with the inscription ‘So many intruders make their living out of you’

[Echoing his one time team-mate from River Plate, Jose Manuel Moreno, who once defined his playing motto as] I always wanted to have the ball for myself; she was my girlfriend. Thanks, Old Girl

2011 08 25 Retrieve

[The kidnap of Di Stefano] I was blindfolded when the gang took me from the hotel on Saturday and kept locked in a bedroom. […] I thought they were going to kill me […] My position was uncomfortable. I am not a politician so I’d prefer not to try to explain why they kidnapped me. All I know is that they never mistreated me. The commander of the rebel group, Maximo Canales, directed the kidnapping and was with me all the time. He apologised a thousand times for the inconvenience. I was worried because of the anguish it was causing my wife and my eight-year-old son. The day after the kidnapping they let me listen on the radio when my team beat Oporto of Portugal. They let me out of a car [with sticking plasters over his eyes] on the Avenida Libertador this afternoon. I took a cab to the Spanish Embassy

2013 05 05 Retrieve

[Real Madrid legend Di Stefano to marry woman 50 years his junior] I’m in love. I’m getting married to Gina. I am 86 but I have a young heart. I don’t care what my children think. I am interested in my life and nothing else. And not making a lot of trouble. They are going to have a go at me but I will take it with sincerity. If any wants to ask me then let them do it and I will explain it to them

2013 03 18 Retrieve

[Football legend Alfredo Di Stefano says he may have played against Pope Francis as children] Pope Francis and I went to the same school in Buenos Aires. He lived in a church two blocks from my family’s house, where my sister Norma still resides. In our neighbourhood we used to hold major football sessions that went on until it got dark, with everyone playing against each other. Maybe the pope was one of the guys I played football with in the street

At that time I was the famous one because from a very young age I belonged to River Plate’s youth team, everybody knew me

[Di Stefano is an honorary president of Madrid, and his interest in football meant he missed the moment when his compatriot emerged as the new pope] I must confess that while everyone else watched the white smoke live, I saw it later. I was, as always, watching a football game

2013 06 02 Retrieve

[The fiancée of footballing legend Alfredo Di Stefano claims her 86-year old husband-to-be is being kept ‘a prisoner’ by his family in a bid to stop the marriage to his much younger bride] I don’t care what my children think. I’m in love and I’m getting married to Gina as soon as possible.

2016 10 13 Retrieve

[Alfredo Di Stefano on Pele] The best player ever? Pele. [Lionel] Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are both great players with specific qualities, but Pele was better

2020 05 01 Retrieve

[Alfredo Di Stefano, had nothing but respect for what the Dons had achieved] Aberdeen have what money can’t buy; a soul, a team spirit built in a family tradition