Real Madrid and Mallorca break relations for Pepillo

On December 30, 1962, Madrid visited Mallorca and lost 5-2. It was a huge surprise. That broke relations between the two clubs, not exactly because of the win. Or maybe yes.

It was the penultimate day of the first round and Madrid was leading. Mallorca had appeared in the First Division in 60-61; So recent among the greats, it was a team without pedigree, which after saving the category the first two seasons in this one was in the middle of the table. He had a managed team with a jewel in the forward axis, Pepillo, a unique footballer. Melillense, he had triumphed at Sevilla to such an extent that Madrid signed him as a possible successor to Di Stéfano. But Di Stéfano was not weighed down by the years and Pepillo, after a loan to River Plate, had been transferred to Mallorca earlier that season. In his 29 official appearances for Madrid, he had scored 28 goals. Mallorca paid 1,500,000 pesetas for him, a record in the history of the club; as was his chip: 700,000.

The president of Mallorca, Lorenzo Munar, promised the Bernabéu not to line him up against Madrid. An oral agreement, not included in the contract. But when the day came, it was strange that without prior explanation (which would have been ominous for both parties) Pepillo was left out of the team. José Luis Saso, coach, made the manager, Francisco Vidal, see it this way; he called his madridista counterpart, Antonio Calderón, a tough guy who told him to go for a ride. Then Munar called Bernabéu, but he couldn’t find him all day Saturday, nor on Sunday morning. Munar, captain of the Army, was annoyed that Bernabéu shunned him and decided to authorize his alignment, taking refuge in something like administrative silence.

The old Lluís Sitjar was bursting when the two teams left at four in the afternoon. There had been gossip in the street about whether Pepillo would or not, and seeing him there caused general satisfaction. The one who was missing was Di Stéfano, who in that season missed several games for the first time due to back pain. He was replaced by Yanko Daucik, son of a famous coach. A striker as great and technical as he is slow. “Two cubic meters of striker”, that’s how an older cousin ironically defined it for me. The rest of the team was the gala one, with Amancio, Félix Ruiz, Puskas and Gento completing the lead,

It would be a historic afternoon for Mallorca, who won 5-2, with two from Pepillo. Muñoz Lusarreta, vice-president who traveled at the head of the team (Bernabéu almost never did) left at half-time in protest at the line-up of the player from Melilla, but not before reminding Munar of some previous favor, such as the loan of Di Stéfano two summers before for the premiere of the artificial lighting of the Lluís Sitjar, and announce that relations were broken.

The defeat fell to Madrid like a shot. Among the white fans, who were very fond of Pepillo and none of Yanko, discontent spread over having released the former to make way for Daucik’s son, who also never trained Madrid and yes to his three great rivals: Barça , Athletic and Athletic.

On January 6, when the team returned to the Bernabéu, there was a double row: against the team for the defeat and against Di Stéfano, who reappeared after a Christmas in which his advertisement for Berkshire socks (in which he was seen in a photomontage with legs of a woman) had embarrassed Real Madrid. The anger was terrible, but Di Stéfano, in his own way, scored two goals, and Madrid beat Athletic 3-2. The one who paid for the fall in Mallorca was the goalkeeper Araquistain. Vicente, holder the previous course, returned to the position.

Madrid recovered its winning rhythm and after beating Atlético on matchday 24 they were proclaimed mathematical champion with five games still to play. The penultimate had to receive Mallorca, who was in danger of promotion. Pepillo played again; total, broken relations… Neither the fans nor the club had forgotten the offense and as Madrid had loosened the tension with the secured title, there were whistles and even shouts of tongo.

At the break it was 1-0 and in the second half Madrid turned around to produce a 5-2, in perfect symmetry with the first round. Washed offense. Mallorca was in a promotion position, it was Espanyol’s turn and that was resolved in a playoff match at the Bernabéu, where the Balearic team lost 1-0 and returned to Second.