The Filipino football megastar who ignited FC Barcelona's golden era

The Filipino football megastar who ignited FC Barcelona's golden era

Over a century ago, a Filipino football sensation named Paulino Alcantara burst onto the scene, leaving an everlasting impact on the history of Futbol Club Barcelona. His creative brilliance and exceptional skills sparked the club's golden era, making him a legendary figure in the world of football. In this article, we delve into the captivating journey of Paulino Alcantara, uncovering his rise to fame, his contributions to FC Barcelona, and the lasting legacy he left behind.

Paulino Alcantara's Early Life and Remarkable Ascent

Paulino Alcantara's journey began amidst the turmoil of the Philippine Revolution in August 1896. Born in the city of Iloilo to a Spanish military officer father and a local mother, young Alcantara moved to Spain with his family when he was only three years old. Little did he know that this life-altering decision would lead him to FC Barcelona, one of the most iconic football clubs in history.

 Igniting FC Barcelona's Golden Era

Joan Gamper, the visionary behind FC Barcelona's formation, discovered Alcantara's football talents when he was just 14 years old. As the club's president since 1908, Gamper was quick to recognize Alcantara's potential and signed him to the youth team. This move marked the beginning of a new era for FC Barcelona, thanks to Alcantara's immense contributions.

 Paulino Alcantara's Dazzling Debut and Legendary Goals

In 1912, at the tender age of 15, Paulino Alcantara made his debut for FC Barcelona's first team, becoming the youngest player and youngest goalscorer in an official match. His on-field brilliance earned him the nickname "El Rompe Redes" (The Net Breaker) as he showcased his natural-born goalscoring abilities. Alcantara's goals were not only electrifying but also instrumental in FC Barcelona's success.

 A Journey Back Home and a Triumphant Return

In 1916, Alcantara had to leave Spain as his family returned to the Philippines. However, his passion for football remained undeterred, and he continued to play for the Bohemian Sporting Club, winning two Philippine Championships in 1917 and 1918. Additionally, Alcantara represented the Philippines national football team in the Far Eastern Championship Games in Tokyo in 1917, securing a historic victory against Japan with a scoreline of 15-2.

 From Medicine to Managing FC Barcelona

Alcantara's dedication extended beyond football. While pursuing his medical studies, he found a perfect balance between football and his passion for medicine. In 1931, he returned to FC Barcelona as a club director, contributing to the club's growth off the field.

 The Timeless Legacy of Paulino Alcantara

Paulino Alcantara's impact on the football world remains timeless. He was recognized as FIFA's Best Asian Player of All Time in 2007, cementing his status as an inspirational figure for the revival of football in the Philippines. Even after his passing in 1964, Alcantara's legacy endures through a statue erected in his honor outside the Philippine Football Federation building in Manila.

 Paulino Alcantara's journey from the Philippines to FC Barcelona is a testament to the power of talent and determination. His exceptional skills and charismatic presence made him a legendary figure in the history of both the club and football. The legacy he left behind continues to inspire football enthusiasts worldwide, ensuring that Paulino Alcantara's name will forever be etched in the annals of football history.


Akhyari Hananto

I began my career in the banking industry in 1997, and stayed approx 6 years in it. This industry boost his knowledge about the economic condition in Indonesia, both macro and micro, and how to More understand it. My banking career continued in Yogyakarta when I joined in a program funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB),as the coordinator for a program aimed to help improve the quality of learning and teaching process in private universities in Yogyakarta. When the earthquake stroke Yogyakarta, I chose to join an international NGO working in the area of ?disaster response and management, which allows me to help rebuild the city, as well as other disaster-stricken area in Indonesia. I went on to become the coordinator for emergency response in the Asia Pacific region. Then I was assigned for 1 year in Cambodia, as a country coordinator mostly to deliver developmental programs (water and sanitation, education, livelihood). In 2009, he continued his career as a protocol and HR officer at the U.S. Consulate General in Surabaya, and two years later I joined the Political and Economic Section until now, where i have to deal with extensive range of people and government officials, as well as private and government institution troughout eastern Indonesia. I am the founder and Editor-in-Chief in Good News From Indonesia (GNFI), a growing and influential social media movement, and was selected as one of The Most Influential Netizen 2011 by The Marketeers magazine. I also wrote a book on "Fundamentals of Disaster Management in 2007"?, "Good News From Indonesia : Beragam Prestasi Anak Bangsa di dunia"? which was luanched in August 2013, and "Indonesia Bersyukur"? which is launched in Sept 2013. In 2014, 3 books were released in which i was one of the writer; "Indonesia Pelangi Dunia"?, "Indonesia The Untold Stories"? and "Growing! Meretas Jalan Kejayaan" I give lectures to students in lectures nationwide, sharing on full range of issues, from economy, to diplomacy Less
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