Here I want to share images of some moments of my career, in Chile and Europe, and the football trips I’ve done in the last years to make some football dreams come true.
Let’s start with a bit of history: I took this series of pictures of Manuel Pellegrini back in 1995, when he was the coach of Universidad Católica. I was in my first year of Journalism school and since my greatest dream was to become a Sports Journalist (or Football Journalist to be more sincere and accurate), I did all my assignments and homeworks about football. Therefore, it was usual for me to go to the training sessions of La UC in San Carlos de Apoquindo to interview some players. In this occasion I also interviewed Pellegrini. I waited for him on a side, after his usual round with all the radio reporters who covered Universidad Católica for their daily shows and when he was done, really shy but empowered, I forced myself to speak to him and I asked him for a “one on one” moment to ask him a few questions for my assignment.
I have the best impression and opinion about Manuel Pellegrini as a person, because at that time -when it was completely unthinkable that a woman knew about or even liked football- he could have refused, he could have laughed at me, he could have discriminated me, or he could have just looked down on me for being only a 18 year-old college student doing a class assignment, but no… not at all. Far from it, he told me “No problem, but I only have five minutes” and with my recorder I taped all the questions I needed him to answer me. In the end it was more than five minutes and he treated me, spoke to me and answered me just exactly the same as he did with the radio reporters. I already told you… in 1995 (and before… before I started in this football world way before that year) it was the strangest of things to see a woman, let alone a young girl, sticking her nose in football, talking at the same level with players, coaches and journalists.
They say that you will always remember someone for the way they made you feel. In this case, that’s certainly true. Manuel Pellegrini was one the first “great” ones who made me feel validated about what I wanted to pursue in my life as a profession. He respected me and considered me as he would have done with any professional, when I was only starting. That’s something I never forget about him. Far from it, I cherish it and I’m infinitely grateful for it.
That is why his international success makes me very happy and now I wish him the best of luck in his new endeavour with the Hebei China Fortune.