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feverpitch

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The original Black Pearl of soccer
« on: December 09, 2011, 12:35:04 PM »

http://www.maroc-football.com/foot-story.php?page=1&subpage=1&langue=EN

Larbi Ben Barek




Those who saw him playing say: without the war, Larbi Ben Barek would have been recognized as one of the greatest players in the history of football. He had all the talents and gifts: touch of the ball, vision play, heading, dribbling, stature, and style.

Poor and orphaned at an early age, Larbi was an attacker who had a dream that he would later transfer to the field with some of the most unbelievably agile goals and passes ever seen in the football world. His success with the US Moroccan team playing with players as great as Zatelli and Janin, Just Fontaine, Chicha and the Mahjoub brothers attracted the attention of the Olympic of Marseille which he joined in 1938.

Arrived unknown during summer '38, Kohut scored at the first minute a goal laid on by Ben Barek who scored 2 more by the time, the first game of the season against Racing of Paris, was over. And what a match it was (5-2,September 4). He overwhelmed Sindelar of Austria, Sarosi of Hungary and the French selection of Veinante, Nicolas, and Heisserer.

Three months later, on the 4th of December in Naples, Larbi the-exceptionally gifted played his first game for France against Italy who were double world champions (0-1). The team of France at the following game thrashed Poland (4-0, January 22.1939), he offered a goal on a plate to Zatelli with this comment: "Here for you, Mr Mario..."

Larbi was held in high esteem, and enjoyed tremendous respect that, when his club stade de France wanted to transfer him to Atletico of Madrid in 1948, a French journalist wrote “Sell the Arch of Triumph or the Eiffel Tower, but do not sell Ben Barek”. Larbi left France and played for the prestigious Atletico of Madrid.

There, he formed with Herrera the deadliest attacking force in Spanish football history and rediscovered the path to the net, scoring 9 goals during his second game against Racing Santander, 56 goals in 113 appearances before he sealed his spell at Spain with two Champion titles 1950/51.

At the ripe old age of 40, he played the 1954 French Cup final with the Olympique Marseilles. A few months later, (October 16,1954) France faced in Hanover Germany the new world champion, who they ripped apart, beating them 3-1 with Larbi who played for France for 15 interval years. Exceptional longevity due without any doubt to a very healthy way of life, where alcohol and the tobacco were shunned. At the time of his return to Marseilles (1954-56), he lived in Périer Boulevard and walked everyday to the Vélodrome stadium for his training sessions. He never refused a snap shot or a word of encouragement from his fans. In 1992 September 16th, the Black Pearl died in Casablanca.

Larbi Ben Barek carried the torch of legends during his time with Olympic of Marseilles, Atletico of Madrid and French national team. He carried it with grace, dignity and a great love for the game. In return the Moroccans and footballing World legends such as Pele, who offered him his famous number 10 shirt, had taken Larbi Ben Barek into their hearts forever. And it goes without saying that Ben Barek was without any shadow of doubt - the definitive footballing genius.
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feverpitch

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2011, 12:37:47 PM »

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larbi_Benbarek

Larbi Benbarek

Personal information

Full name   Haj Abdelkader Larbi Ben M'barek
Date of birth   16 June 1914
Place of birth   Casablanca
Date of death   16 September 1992 (aged 78)
Place of death   Casablanca, Morocco
Playing position   Midfielder


Youth career
1928–1930   FC El Ouatane de Casablanca

Senior career*
Years   Team   Apps†   (Gls)†
1930–1934   Idéal Club Casablanca      
1934–1938   US Marocaine      
1938–1939   Marseille   30   (10)
1939–1945   US Marocaine      
1945–1948   Stade Français FC   87   (43)
1948–1953   Atlético Madrid   113   (56)
1953–1955   Marseille   32   (13)
1955–1956   USM Bel-Abbès      

National team
1938–1954   France   19   (3)
Teams managed
1957   Morocco
1960   Morocco
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).


Larbi Benbarek or Larbi Ben Barek (also known as the Black Pearl) (16 June 1914 – 16 September 1992) (Casablanca, Morocco) was a Moroccan football player. He was the first player to bear the nickname of Black Pearl.

The first African star and the first to bear the nickname of "Black Pearl", Ben Barek blazed a trail to the European, and particularly French and Spanish, leagues. He arrived at Marseille, France at the age of 20, and became an instant favourite with the fans for his skills and technical abilities. Pele took the name of the "Black Pearl" after he made a famous statement about Larbi: "If I am the King of Soccer, then Larbi Ben Barek is the God of it".

He is largely remembered as the first successful black footballer in Europe.

His career was interrupted by the onset of World War II but he was soon back to his best with Stade Français FC and then in Spain, with Atlético Madrid, where he truly blossomed and where his international fame spread. His nickname with the fans in Spain was "The Foot of God". With the help of Benbarek, Atlético won La Liga in 1950 and 1951.He returned to Marseille in 1953.

One of the finest players ever to represent France, his adopted country, he made 19 appearances for the French national team between 1938 and 1954. But his comeback in 1954 against Germany in Hanover was curtailed by an injury after half an hour and proved to be the end of his career.

Later life

He was the first coach of the Morocco national football team.[1] Larbi Ben Barek died in his home town on 16 September 1992. Also, 6 years after his death, he was awarded the FIFA Order of Merit Award, which is the award of the highest honor in FIFA.
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feverpitch

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From Morocco to Algeria
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2011, 01:19:05 PM »

One of the most entertaining and talented teams I can recall in any World Cup happened to be the Algerian team of 1986. Having made their entry into the World Cup fray in 1982, where they beat reigning European Champions W Germany 2-1 in the first match, and were only eliminated by one of the most widely deplored "fixed" matches in world cup history, when Austria and WG, knowing only a German win by 1 goal would carry both through and eliminate the Arab nation, proceeded to do just that, resulting in FIFA changing rules whereby both the last matches in a round-robin league would have to be played simultaneously. But this is a World Cup I only watched in video clippings and youtube much later.

In the 1986 edition, Algeria drew Northern Ireland 1-1, before giving Brazil a run for their money, only losing to a lone Careca goal. With a team that had the likes of the dribbling magician Rabah Majder and Djamel Zidane in attack, vision of Lakhdar Belloumi in midfield and safety of Nacerdine Drid in goal, despite going down to an early Ramon Caldere goal, they dominated their final group match against Spain for about 70 mins, when Andoni Goicoexchea, the Butcher of Bilbao, elbowed and then trampled on the fabulous goalkeeper Drid during a corner, knocking him senseless, with a big gash across his eyebrow and five front teeth on the ground. Unsurprisingly, the referee gave a penalty (yes!) against the Algerians, for whom Drid had to continue despite blood oozing literally drenching his body as they had used up their replacements. They lost 3-0 and were knocked out.

Rabah Majder subsequently gained European superstardom playing for FC Porto in 1987, scoring what is considered the greatest goal in a European Club Cup Final against Bayern Munich, with a cool backheel that won the match for the Portuguese club. Both Belloumi and Majder were voted by FIFA in the top ten of African footballers of the 20th century.
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feverpitch

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Back to Morocco
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2011, 01:39:11 PM »

Since I started with Morocco, it's fitting that I end with their 1986 team that topped their group league, considered the "Group of Death" with England, Portugal and Poland.

They drew Poland and England 0-0, and went on to blow apart the Portugal of Joao Pinto, Carlos Manuel, Fernando Gomes, Paulo Futre and Diamantino 3-1, with Zaki in goal providing the solidity upon which Dolmi, Aziz Bouderbala, the galloping midfield general Mohammad Timoumi and the brothers Merry—Abdelkrim "Krimau" and Mustafa built their entertaining and devil-may-care game.

In the next round, they faced West Germany, and played almost the entire match in the German penalty area, but went down to a 88th minute goal by Lothar Matthaeus off a counter attack.

As always, Gary Lineker's statement, that, "football is a game played by two teams of 11 players, in the end Germany always wins", held true. It was actually also true of the quarter final between FRG and hosts Mexico, whom they beat via penalty shootout, after barely scraping through to a 0-0 draw.
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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2011, 08:05:45 PM »

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feverpitch

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2011, 05:10:38 PM »

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2011, 06:32:03 PM »

india's fifa ranking: 162

http://www.fifa.com/associations/association=ind/ranking/gender=m/index.html

...among some 210 nations, not 2 in 10.
So?


It is as bad as it can get for a nation of 1.2 Billion where even nations of a couple of million are among the Top 50 or better. We do not seem to have any time for a game of common people.
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Blwe_torch

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2011, 04:51:40 PM »

Thanks for the info Fever......frankly, I had never heard of Larbi before. The only Larbi I knew, was one Soeren Larbi of the famous Denmark team of the middle eighties. :icon_thumleft:
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feverpitch

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2011, 08:29:41 AM »

Thanks for the info Fever......frankly, I had never heard of Larbi before. The only Larbi I knew, was one Soeren Larbi of the famous Denmark team of the middle eighties. :icon_thumleft:

that was different. he was soren lerby. but then again, with so many sens in scandinavia, you can never be sure, can u? >:D
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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2011, 03:26:01 PM »

Thanks for the info Fever......frankly, I had never heard of Larbi before. The only Larbi I knew, was one Soeren Larbi of the famous Denmark team of the middle eighties. :icon_thumleft:

that was different. he was soren lerby. but then again, with so many sens in scandinavia, you can never be sure, can u? >:D

Yes..but that Lerby was an exception amongst a host of 'sens' :)
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feverpitch

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2011, 03:34:02 PM »

Thanks for the info Fever......frankly, I had never heard of Larbi before. The only Larbi I knew, was one Soeren Larbi of the famous Denmark team of the middle eighties. :icon_thumleft:

that was different. he was soren lerby. but then again, with so many sens in scandinavia, you can never be sure, can u? >:D

Yes..but that Lerby was an exception amongst a host of 'sens' :)

In my childhood, I used to trick ppl with a world beating Bengali soccer team made of 'Sen' s...
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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2012, 01:40:19 AM »

india's fifa ranking: 162

http://www.fifa.com/associations/association=ind/ranking/gender=m/index.html

Fallen now to 164. India sits between   ...  (drum roll please) .... Madagascar ranked at 163 and Aruba ranked at 165.

In the within-continent ranking, India is 31, between Yemen and the Maldives.

Un effing believable.
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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2012, 02:06:46 AM »

india's fifa ranking: 162

http://www.fifa.com/associations/association=ind/ranking/gender=m/index.html

Fallen now to 164. India sits between   ...  (drum roll please) .... Madagascar ranked at 163 and Aruba ranked at 165.

In the within-continent ranking, India is 31, between Yemen and the Maldives.

Un effing believable.
Don't worry, Khan will take us to the top  ::Whip::
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dextrous

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #13 on: June 11, 2012, 03:41:31 AM »

india's fifa ranking: 162

http://www.fifa.com/associations/association=ind/ranking/gender=m/index.html

Fallen now to 164. India sits between   ...  (drum roll please) .... Madagascar ranked at 163 and Aruba ranked at 165.

In the within-continent ranking, India is 31, between Yemen and the Maldives.

Un effing believable.

the way fifa rankings are designed, there's almost very little chance that india will bounce back within the next 5 years even. (and quite honestly, we are not good enough to bounce back, so it isn't as if rankings aren't a true reflection).  since rankings are based on x number of previous matches and we keep playing without planning or scouting and keep losing,ranking will remain in free-fall. the key is to play people around the same ranking and notch up some wins but i doubt anyone at the soccer committee actually has any clue how the rankings work. each of these losses against higher-ranked team are raking up negative points without any positive points coming from a win against ANYONE.

coach is quite bad too.

we would probably be around 120 if we didn't have bad administration. nothing to be proud of but still.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2012, 03:51:09 AM by dextrous »
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RicePlateReddy

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #14 on: June 11, 2012, 04:47:13 AM »

From wikipedia (didn't know this until now).

Quote
India qualified by default for the 1950 FIFA World Cup finals as a result of the withdrawal of all of their scheduled opponents. But the governing body, the AIFF, decided against going to the World Cup, being unable to understand the importance of the event at that time. Reason shown by AIFF was that there was the cost of travel (although FIFA agreed to bear a major part of the travel expenses), lack of practice time, team selection issues and valuing Olympics over FIFA World cup.

India's highest FIFA ranking is 96 BTW, achieved in 1996.

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #15 on: June 11, 2012, 05:21:19 AM »

From wikipedia (didn't know this until now).

Quote
India qualified by default for the 1950 FIFA World Cup finals as a result of the withdrawal of all of their scheduled opponents. But the governing body, the AIFF, decided against going to the World Cup, being unable to understand the importance of the event at that time. Reason shown by AIFF was that there was the cost of travel (although FIFA agreed to bear a major part of the travel expenses), lack of practice time, team selection issues and valuing Olympics over FIFA World cup.

India's highest FIFA ranking is 96 BTW, achieved in 1996.



i think that was the year bhutia started showing real promise and formed a good forward line with vijayan with jo paul ancheri in the supporting cast
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feverpitch

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Re: The original Black Pearl of soccer
« Reply #16 on: June 11, 2012, 08:42:05 AM »

From wikipedia (didn't know this until now).

Quote
India qualified by default for the 1950 FIFA World Cup finals as a result of the withdrawal of all of their scheduled opponents. But the governing body, the AIFF, decided against going to the World Cup, being unable to understand the importance of the event at that time. Reason shown by AIFF was that there was the cost of travel (although FIFA agreed to bear a major part of the travel expenses), lack of practice time, team selection issues and valuing Olympics over FIFA World cup.

India's highest FIFA ranking is 96 BTW, achieved in 1996.



i think that was the year bhutia started showing real promise and formed a good forward line with vijayan with jo paul ancheri in the supporting cast

For all those who came in late (via EPL, that is)

1. Only Israel withdrew playing against India during the qualifiers for the 1950 WC. Wiki got it wrong there.
2. India didn't have the money to send the team to Brazil, via Southampton (a 2 month sea voyage)
3. Even if they did go, they wouldn't have been allowed to play, as Indians played batefoot, and only started using boots in the late 60s.
4. Long before FIFA rankings started, India were Asian champs (62), Olympic semifinalists ('56) and Asian Games 3rd ('82, at home).

It is true though, that with the extreme levels of myopia, factionalism, regionalism that our footie administration suffers from, our current condition was inevitable. Imagine, a federation whose president (PriyaRanjan DasMunshi) has been in coma for the last 4 1/2 years at AIIMS.
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