I could easily say this 2014 FIFA World Cup was the best performance ever in Colombian soccer history. We had in this opportunity a different coach, José Pekerman, an Argentinian who was hired two years ago to take us to the glory, and despite we didn’t win the world cup we did history.
The farthest phase our team had gone was the knockout phase (second round) in 1990 at a World Cup played in Italy. But this time in Brazil 2014 our team scored 11 goals, we won 4 matches in a row and we classified in to the best 8, the quarter finals!! It seemed this world cup was made for us, all players were playing great, from the goalkeeper (David Ospina) to the striker (James Rodriguez). This team could unify 46 millions of hearts who were feeling each game as theirs, you could feel in the streets the positivism of the people, everybody was happy, and there was nothing to lose because Colombia had already made history. The decisive match had to be played against Brazil, the host of this world cup and five times winner of this tournament, this was a difficult game.
This time Brazil won 2-1 in a controversial match with a lot of criticism for the referee. Each goal was felt by the Colombian people directly in their hearts, at the end of the game Colombian players showed their bewilderment with the final score, but as we say, we know they “sweated the Colombian t-shirt until the last minute”, it means they gave it all and they made their best effort to put Colombia into the best soccer teams in the world!
The next day and despite the lost, the Colombian people received their soccer team at the airport as champions, there were thousands of people at the streets all of them grateful with the work done by the team.
But it was not just the classification to the knockout stage, our team was awarded with the Fair Play Trophy and we also won the Golden Boot thanks to the 6 goals James Rodriguez did in 399 minutes and with no doubt he did the best goal of the world cup in the match against Uruguay. We set a new record: the oldest player in a world cup. That was Faryd Mondragón, our 42 years old goalkeeper. He played the lasts minutes of Colombia vs. Japan and Juan Guillermo Cuadrado won as the Goal Assists Leader doing 4 goal passes. We couldn’t be happier about these results, we are proud about our team performance and we have the hope to go beyond during the next World Cup in Russia.
So come on guys, all Colombia is with you and as we say “en las buenas o en las malas” (in the good ones and bad ones) we support and believe in you. See you in Moscow in four years and let this piggy bank starts!