Colombia results have fanatical fan all in a flap at the Copa America
Friday 08 July 2011
With Colombia at the summit of Group A there’s one member of Los Cafeteros’ clan still soaring above the rest, Gustavo José Llanos Marino.
Gustavo is more commonly known on Colombian terraces as Cole, el cóndor de Los Andes.
Cole first pecked on the consciousness of football fans around the globe when he packed his bird suit and flew off to the 1990 World Cup in Italy.
Whilst suspended from the stands, Cole provided the wind beneath the wings of Carlos Valderrama and co as Colombia reached the knock-out stages.
Despite falling from his perch during a game in Italy, the Birdman of Colombia developed a taste in his beak for the big time.
Over two decades later the part-time hairdresser, part-time preacher is still flapping on the football team of his country.
“Let’s be honest, in terms of age I’m on the fifth floor, department eight, waiting to be moved upstairs. However, being part of game like our draw with Argentina gives me the strength to believe I can keep on spreading my wings.”
Colombia’s 0-0 draw with the hosts in Santa Fe puts Cole’s boys in pole position to win Group A (available at 1.33 with paf.com). Despite seeing Colombia wrack up four points in two games, Cole admits that all this time away from the nest is starting to catch up with him.
“After the draw in Santa Fe I felt all of my 58 years catching up with me. I felt like the kid from the barrio who steals a cell phone, gets caught and then gets a beating from the police.”
Cole is maintaining a bird’s eye view of Colombia during the 2011 Copa America but there have been times when he has felt the need to fly solo.
“When Colombia failed to make the 2002 World Cup I felt so empty that I just had to go to the Far East anyway. I think they we’re a bit freaked out when I arrived at customs in Japan and for a while it looked like they were going to send me home. Things got straightened out when I pulled out a Japanese magazine with a story in it about me. Then the customs guy then says, Cole San welcome to Japan!”
Cole was in attendance when Colombia last got their claws on the Copa America with a win on home soil. A decade later, el cóndor de Los Andes is dreaming about the cup coming home to roost again. Colombia going all the way is priced at 13.00 with paf.com.
Email email@example.com for your free €15 credit to spend at paf.com
For more on Copa America 2011, listen to The South American Football Show.
A cautionary tale for ambitious would-be authors
X Factor judge will appear in court later this month
Latest in Sport
Roy Keane omits Paul Scholes, Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs from 'greatest' Manchester United team
Ian Herbert: England need to learn from Aussies and master art of avoiding ‘the creep’ so they can keep winning when they are winning
Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira relive the rivalry - after a shared ice cream in Warsaw
Ashes 2013-14 match report: Alastair Cook future in jeopardy after another woeful display sees England lose to Australia by 218 runs to go down 2-0
Manchester United player ratings: The best (and worst) performers for David Moyes during the season so far
- 1 Gurdwaras-turned-food banks: Sikh temples are catering for rise in Britain’s hungry
- 2 Exercise most effective lifestyle choice for preventing dementia, researchers say
- 3 Teenage girl convicted of robbery after taking pre-crime selfie wielding knife
- 4 Newly vegan Beyoncé wears fox fur to dine in meat free restaurant
- 5 'I'm experiencing austerity as well', says Princess Michael of Kent