Jorge Alberto Gonzalez Barillas, better known as El Magico (The Magic), is next on my Legends Series. He was born in El Salvador on March 13, 1958, (I was also born on the 13th of March) 🙂 He is undoubtedly El Salvador’s best ever player and probably the one that found the most success overseas.
The very talented forward begun his playing career in 1975 where he played for ANTEL and Independiente Nacional 1906 for two season. He would later move to Club Deportivo Fubolistas Asociados Santanecos in the Primera Divison of the Salvadoran league. Magico caught the attention of big clubs from La Liga in Spain two of which had high interest, Atletico Madrid and Cadiz CF were very much interested in 1982.
He would eventually sign for Cadiz CF and made his debut on September 5 1982. He made a total of 194 appearances for Cadiz and would score 58 goals in total and in his first season with the club he played 33 games and scored 15 goals helping the club to get promoted to La Liga. He is widely considered Cadiz’s greatest player to have ever played for the club.
He made 62 appearances for the national team of El Salvador, he was instrumental in helping the national team reach the 1982 FIFA World Cup which was only the second time in ES’s history to ever reach the big stage. Magico scored a total of 21 goals for the national team, and to this day many journalist and critics of the game state that if he was of Argentinian or Brazilian ancestry, he would have been ranked among the very best in world; along with greats like Maradona, Pele, and Cruyff. No matter how you see it, just because he wasn’t from Argentina or Brazil he still did a lot for the ES national team; gave the little country in Central America something to cheer about during a time of Civil War and united a country torn in the love of the game and that speaks volumes. Not to mention the fact that Maradona himself said he was the toughest opponent he had ever played against, that alone tells you something. Magico Gonzalez, a Legend!