Alberto Daniel Brailovsky – The Man Who Played For Three Countries
As a player, Alberto Daniel Brailovsky wore the colours of Uruguay, Argentina and Israel. As a coach, The Russian” is testament to the enormous potential of football to promote harmony between peoples.
1. Uruguay 16 May 1978,
Stade Perruc, Hyeres, France. Brailovsky, then a talented boy with a mop of blond hair, scores Uruguay’s goal against the Netherlands in the Toulon Tournament, an important international youth competition that predated the FIFA U-20 World Cup. The Plaza Noruega in Buenos Aires was the first witness of his extraordinary footwork, which continued at Hacoaj, a Jewish club from Argentina. After turning 16, he flew to Montevideo for a trial with Penarol, his first professional club. Roque Maspoli gave him his first-division debut and soon afterwards he was called up to the Uruguayan youth team coached by Raul Bentancor and Esteban Gesto.
He is moved by the memory of this experience: “It was a special feeling to represent the country that had adopted me and allowed me to grow. When you hear the national anthem, it doesn’t sound like it did before, you realise that you have to give more than usual on the pitch. They treated me as if I’d been born in Uruguay.”