Did the Pope play football with Real Madrid legend Alfredo Di Stefano?
The pair went to the same school in Buenos Aires
Monday 18 March 2013
Alfredo Di Stefano may have had a kick-about with Argentine compatriot Jorge Mario Bergoglio, who was elected Pope Francis last week, when they were growing up around the same time in Buenos Aires, the Real Madrid great has said.
Di Stefano, who is just over 10 years older than the 76-year-old Bergoglio, wrote in his regular column in Spanish sports daily Marca that the pair had gone to the same school and lived close to each other in the Argentine capital.
"As you can imagine his election filled me with enormous joy," Di Stefano wrote.
"The Pope was probably one of those kids with whom I played football in the street," he added.
"In the neighbourhood we put together proper matches with everyone against everyone until it got dark.
"You'll have to ask him because at that time I was the famous one, from when I was very small, as I belonged to the River Plate youth academy, everyone knew me."
Di Stefano is widely considered one of the greatest players of all time and helped to turn Real Madrid, the La Liga club he joined in 1953, into one of the world's leading sides.
One of Pope Francis's predecessors, John Paul II, who died in 2005, was a goalkeeper in his youth.
Latest in Sport
Chelsea players allowed 20 minutes to celebrate, says Jose Mourinho after Capital One Cup victory
Diego Costa keeps coin thrown at him during Capital One Cup final
Liverpool vs Manchester City match report: Stunners from Philippe Coutinho and Jordan Henderson sink Manuel Pellegrini's side
Arsenal 2 Everton 0 player ratings: Who scored highest at the Emirates?
Ireland 19 England 9 player ratings: Jonathan Sexton? Devin Toner? Alex Goode? Who was the star man in Dublin?
- 1 End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
- 2 Raif Badawi, the Saudi Arabian blogger sentenced to 1,000 lashes, may now face death penalty
- 3 PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
- 4 Dakota Johnson's 'It's only Isis' Saturday Night Live sketch sparks controversy
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Russia's roadmap for annexing eastern Ukraine 'leaked from Vladimir Putin's office'