Friday, May 27

Elche CF: Lucas Boyé’s garden


We said yesterday that Lucas Boyé only needed an exhibition against a great to show before Planet Soccer what until yesterday only the “panenkitas” saw, in addition to the Elche fans: he is one of the best strikers in this League. On the lawn of the Santiago Bernabéu and before two outstanding central defenders and possibly the best goalkeeper in the world at the moment, the Argentine striker shouted from the rooftops that he is the leader of a team reborn thanks to Francisco. If confidence was lacking in the final stretch of the “Escribá era”, recent events around the team indicate a cohesive group, which believes in the courage of its coaching staff and in the figure of its star striker.

Against Real Madrid and fresh from an injury, Boyé turned the Madrid temple into his private garden, winning almost all the duels against Militao, appearing at Fidel’s call to head his impeccable center and generating the 0-2 in an excellent maneuver in three quarters of the field to assist Pere Milla. Such was his influence in the game that, who knows if it was fate, Militao had to look in the opponent’s area for what he was unable to find in his own area and, in this way, seal the draw in stoppage time. .

Boyé already completed a great course in his debut as a green-and-green, but he had an enormous potential, especially since the team hardly stepped on the opposite field. In preseason he returned physically better and convinced that he could take that step forward. It was also a matter of being more effective: every chance he was able to generate had to go to the cage. At this start of 2022, more cannot be asked of him in this regard: he decided the match against Villarreal as soon as he went out on the field and yesterday his two dangerous offensive actions ended in a goal. Siren songs arrive about a possible departure in winter. If some of them are real, Elche will be able to do little to retain him, but with how focused the footballer seems, it would be surprising if he would risk a change of scenery now when he has everything in his hands to complete a season with honors and choose the best option in summer. And the same option is to renew and continue in Elche.

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Inches from glory. That four goals “a la Madrid” do not blur what the last 210 minutes of Elche football have been. In a few days, the franjiverdes have stood up to the best team in Spain. And they have done it in the circumstances that we all know. The rival asserted that motto that led him to win four Champions in five years, that of “until the end”. Here no one gives up and it is not without an extra point of satisfaction to see the effusive celebrations of Real Madrid players and fans after the goals from Isco, Hazard and Militao. Like a month ago it happened with Nico’s. Far from offending me, it fills me with pride that the competitive level of this Elche has reached the point of forcing the greats to suffer until the last minute to pass a Cup round or win a League match.

Elche lived in the Bernabéu one of those images that have occurred so many times in sport, when for nothing you are left without eternal glory. That gold medal in an Olympic Games that vanishes in a jump by a centimeter. That shot in the basketball final that does not go in after hitting the hoop several times. Militao, with an imperial jump, won those centimeters from Mojica, leaving the franjiverdes closer than ever to making history and beating Real Madrid for the first time at home. Next year we will try again.

It was Edgar, not Iker. If Boyé made the Madrid Coliseum his garden, Edgar Badia dressed up as Iker Casillas at home. Goalkeepers with a similar profile, “miracle men” and noted for their height and presumed weakness in the air game. The Catalan enlarged his aura of Saint in the stadium that has witnessed the most miracles, at least in this century. Badia’s first half was portentous. He started Vinicius with a stop, almost at point-blank range. He took a couple from Benzema, whom he “forced” to change his usual tendency when taking penalties, with the result well known. Casemiro and Mendy couldn’t beat him either. And he closed the act saving a free kick from Kroos that was heading towards the cobwebs of his squad.

It is not a question of making blood, although the situation perhaps deserves it, but doubting this goalkeeper was already unreasonable, given his services rendered as a franjiverde. Pointing him out was worse. Time and patience have given him the opportunity to return to his place, a goal that he defends thanks to his reflexes since, despite the fact that physically he will not be the goalkeeper with the greatest stature or wingspan, the aura that surrounds him makes him a giant before his rivals. What can I say. I’m not a priest and I don’t go to mass every Sunday, but it never hurts to have God’s envoys on your side. Neither in football nor in life.

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