Colombia: Faustino Asprilla and the time a drug dealer offered to kill Jose Luis Chilavert Rest of the World

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He left more than one surprised. The Colombian exdelantero Faustino Asprilla revealed that a drug dealer asked for “authorization” to assassinate the then Paraguayan goalkeeper in 1997 Jose Luis Chilavert after an altercation between the two in a game of selections.

''But you are crazy! How will they end Colombian football? That can not be. No no no"holds ‘Tino’ Asprilla, which was his response to the offer. In a documentary miniseries about his life, which began broadcasting over the weekend on the Telepacifico regional channel, the 50-year-old former player told unknown details in public about the episode.

At the time the famous soccer players were expelled after being attacked in a match for the World Cup qualifiers in France-1998 played at the Defensores del Chaco stadium, in Asuncion, which ended with victory of the 2-1 locals Asprilla reported, then received a call from Julio Fierro, whom the prosecution identified as a drug trafficker and whose body was found in 2004 after an alleged adjustment of accounts.

The man invited him to a hotel where, Asprilla says, he was in the company of former former Victor Hugo Aristizabal. Fierro was waiting for them "with ten people, drunk" and surrounded by Paraguayan women. "We bored because we had lost the game when, tin, the man arrives (and says): 'we need you to give an authorization (sic) that these two guys are going to stay here in Paraguay, in Asuncion, who want to go kill that fat Chilavert", said Asprilla.

It was then that the Colombian says he flatly refused. "In football, what happens on a court stays on the court. Chilavert already put my fist in it, there we had an allegation, they expelled us and now, that ended there. And those hitmen there that 'no boss, give us the order". According to his testimony, the Paraguayan "never realized that."

In the 1980s and 1990s, Colombian football fell into drug trafficking networks. Several clubs, including America, Millionaires and Envigado, received funding from the mafia and were sanctioned. In 1994, the 27-year-old defender Andres Escobar was killed in Medellin (northwest) in an incident allegedly related to an autogol that marked against the United States (2-1) and that meant the elimination of his country in the World Cup of that year.

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