Search icon


27th Jul 2015

Happy 50th birthday to goalkeeper and free-kick maestro Jose Luis Chilavert

Tom Victor

Long before Brazil’s Rogerio Ceni was breaking records, another South American goalkeeper-goalscorer stole our hearts.

Jose Luis Chilavert was well known by fans of a certain age for his outrageous shooting ability, and as the former Paraguay international turns 50 we have decided to celebrate his phenomenal talent.

His tally of eight international goals in 74 games is comparable with the records of England’s Emile Heskey (7 in 63) and Glenn Hoddle (8 in 53) – not bad for a man whose main job was stopping shots.

He even came close to a World Cup goal, with his long-range free-kick against Slovenia in 2002 drawing a fingertip save from his opposite number.

Of course there were a few penalties among his 66 senior strikes for club and country.

But the highlight was surely this – an unreal halfway-line effort that embarrassed former Argentina number one German Burgos.

They don’t make ’em like Jose any more.