One of the most memorable matches for the fans of Junior de Barranquilla was that match against America de Cali in 1993. There, both clubs arrived with the possibility of winning the title that season, which was disputed from start to finish.
The meeting was full of various seasonings that surrounded that match that was marked in the retina of many fans. It should be remembered that the historic Carlos Alberto el ‘Pibe’ Valderrama, the legendary Colombian player, was on the Junior squad.
This Wednesday, a story that was completely unknown was known through the main actor. Apparently, the former drug trafficker Mauricio Rodríguez Orejuela, had made an unusual request to the referee who would whistle the commitment between Barranquilla and Cali, with a special condition.
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Episode in the Junior vs America of the year 1993
The judge of that match was the former referee Panesso, who told everything that happened in an interview conducted by La Jugada de RCN Radio. According to what he says, Rodríguez Orejuela’s men arrived at the door of his house days after learning of his appointment to lead the engagement.
There, they took him a briefcase with more than 30 million pesos from that time, which today means 300 million pesos. The condition was that he whistled in favor of América de Cali, a club that needed a victory in any way to be able to come out as runner-up in the tournament.
It should be noted that that match would end 3-2 in favor of the ‘rojiblancos’, who would finally become champions of the tournament. A goal from Mackenzie at the last minute would leave América without a chance and hand over the title to those from Barranquilla.
In those years, Colombian soccer was controlled by drug mafias, which tainted local football with money extracted from illicit acts.