Chile: Bielsa Sends Jersey To Former Soccer Player Trapped In Mine

By Dialogo
August 27, 2010

The coach of the Chilean national soccer team, the Argentine Marcelo Bielsa, sent a jersey signed by him and by the team’s stars to former soccer player Franklin Lobos, one of the thirty-three miners trapped in the San José mine, his daughter told AFP.

Carolina Lobos, daughter of the former local league player, who was briefly on the national team, said that members of the Soccer Players’ Union arranged for him to receive a jersey signed by Bielsa, goalkeeper Claudio Bravo, and midfielders Matías Fernández, Jorge Valdivia, and Carlos Carmona, among others.

“My dad is going to be happy that Bielsa sent him the jersey. He has a great deal of respect for Bielsa as a coach and for everything that he’s done for the team,” Carolina commented to AFP.

The jersey, according to her account, will be sent to her father inside the mine, where he has been trapped seven hundred meters underground, together with thirty-two comrades, since 5 August.

It was only on Sunday, after seventeen days without contact, that communication with the group of miners was achieved through a small borehole. Liquid food has been sent to them through this route, and it is expected that they will also receive rolled-up clothing in the next few hours.

Franklin Lobos, fifty-five years old, was on the same team as Iván Zamorano in the local league and had only been working at the San José mine for three months, as a driver.