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Teófilo Juan Cubillas Arizaga (Spanish pronunciation: [teˈofilo kuˈβiʎas]; born 8 March 1949) popularly known as El Nene (The Kid), is a Peruvian former footballer who played as an attacking midfielder. He was selected as Peru's greatest ever player in an IFFHS poll, in which he was also included in the world's Top 50. He is considered by many as the maximum reference of Peruvian football and one of the best South American players in history. He was renowned for his technique, shooting ability and free kick ability. He was considered one of the best players in the world of the 1970s and the best in his position of the decade only behind the Dutch Johan Cruyff. Among his main achievements are the FIFA awards for the best young player and the bronze boot in Mexico 1970, as well as the silver boot and member of the ideal team of Argentina 1978, he was also champion and best player of the 1975 Copa América. He is regarded one of the best attacking midfielders in the history of football.
Cubillas in 2009
|Full name||Teófilo Juan Cubillas Arizaga|
|Date of birth||8 March 1949|
|Place of birth||Lima, Peru|
|Height||1.73 m (5 ft 8 in)|
|1979–1983||Fort Lauderdale Strikers||139||(65)|
|1983||Fort Lauderdale Strikers (indoor)||9||(9)|
|1984–1985||South Florida Sun||7||(5)|
|1988||Fort Lauderdale Strikers||12||(7)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
He was characterized as an attacking midfielder gifted with exquisite technique, power, change of pace, dribbling ability and great goalscoring ability. His medium and long-range free kicks were famous for the precision with which he executed them. On the field of play, he also stood out for his sportsmanship: he was never sent off.
He is the midfielder most goalscorer (10 goals) and with the best goal average (0.77) in the history of the Soccer World Cup, one of the 4 top free kick scorers in the history of the Soccer World Cup together with Pelé, Beckham and Rivelino, he was a five-time candidate for "best South American footballer of the year" in (1971, 1972 -winner-, 1975, 1977, and 1978). And together with Batistuta he is the 3rd highest Latin American scorer in World Cup history, after Ronaldo and Pelé.
At the club level, he is the second highest historical scorer for Club Alianza Lima (167 goals). He is also the top scorer for the "Blue and White" club in the history of the Copa Libertadores, the fourth top foreign scorer in the history of FC Porto (66 goals), the top scorer in the history of Fort Lauderdale Strikers (65 goals) and the eighth all-time top scorer in the Peruvian League (167 goals). He was the top scorer in the Copa Libertadores in 1972, scoring 6 goals and is the Peruvian soccer player with the best average goal score in European competitions, scoring 72 goals in 122 games, achieving an average of 0.59 goals per game, and the one that scored the most goals in a season European, scoring 36 goals in 39 games in the season 1975-76 with the FC Porto. He is also the highest-scoring midfielder in the history of FC Porto.
Worldwide, the IFFHS, in 2008, awarded Cubillas 268 goals in 469 official matches in First Division Tournaments, placing him as the seventh midfielder highest scorer of the history of football, surpassing other greats in the world such as Platini (207), Roberto Baggio (205), Gullit (175), Rivaldo (229), Zidane (95) and Maradona (259), in addition to being the second South American midfielder with the most goals in history, only behind Zico. During his long career there are 615 games and 338 goals.
He is the eighth historical scorer of the Soccer World Cup and is the highest-scoring midfielder in the history of the World Cup, surpassing in goals and goal average geniuses such as Maradona, Cruyff , Zico, Zidane and Platini. He was chosen by FIFA as the 2nd "Best Young Player" in the history of the World Cup, beating cracks of the stature of Beckenbauer, Flórián Albert, Owen and Enzo Scifo, as well as one of the 100 best players in the history of the World Cup by the same institution in 2018. At the continental level, it was included in the historical ideal eleven of the Copa América according to the official site of the continental competition in 2015.
Moreover, he is one of the only three players to score five or more goals in two different World Cups, the other two being Miroslav Klose and Thomas Müller. Noted for his free kicks, he is considered one of the best free kick specialists of all time.
Cubillas has been awarded South American Footballer of the Year in 1972 - beating Pelé in the votes and is a member of the Maracanã Stadium hall of fame. In 2004 he was named in the list of the 50 Best Players of the 20th Century and one of the best South American footballers 20th century by the IFFHS - that same year he was named to the FIFA 100 list compiled by Pelé. In 2008, the Sports Illustrated magazine included him in the ideal eleven of the last 50 years of South American football along with Pelé, Maradona, Garrincha and others continental soccer legends. In 2019 he was included by the prestigious British magazine FourFourTwo among the 100 best footballers in the history of football, ranking 66. He is also one of the 50 player most voted as Best footballer of the century  in all the historical rankings that were made at the end of the 20th century. He is considered by FIFA as a legend of the Soccer World Cup.
"Teófilo Cubillas is my successor"— Pelé, 1970
"Cubillas was a specialist in passing and shooting, like the one with" three fingers "who did it perfectly"— Zico, 2006
"Cubillas was one of those old" 10 ", spectacular, who always ruled on the field"— Mario Kempes, 2006
"When I saw that goal (from Cubillas to Scotland), I decided that I too wanted to kick free kicks"— José Luis Chilavert, 2006
Nicknamed "Nene" (the babe) for his boyish looks, Cubillas began his career with Alianza Lima at the age of 16 in 1966. Whilst at Alianza he was top scorer in the Peruvian Primera División in 1966 and 1970.
In the summer of 1973, Cubillas transferred to Swiss football club FC Basel under head coach Helmut Benthaus. The Basler entrepreneur and transport company owner Ruedi Reisdorfer paid the transfer fee of £97,000. After playing in four Cup of the Alps games, Cubillas played his domestic league debut for his new club on 18 August in the away game against Chênois. He scored his first goal for the club in the same game as Basel won 1–0. Cubillas scored two goals for Basel in the 1973–74 European Cup, the first of which in the 1st leg against Fram on 19 September 1973 and the second in the return leg on 20 September. He only remained at the club for six months, which was not long enough for him to show the extent of his talent. In these six months Cubillas played a total of 21 games for Basel scoring a total of eight goals.10 of these games were in the Nationalliga A, two in the Swiss Cup, four in the European Cup, four in the Cup of the Alps and one was a friendly game. He scored three goals in the league, two in the domestic cup, two in the European Cup and the other one was scored in the Cup of the Alps.
In 1979, Cubillas joined the NASL, signing for Fort Lauderdale Strikers, where he spent five seasons, scoring 59 league goals, including three goals in seven minutes against the Los Angeles Aztecs in 1981.
Following the December 1987 Alianza Lima air crash Cubillas returned from his Miami home to play for free for Alianza, who lost most of their players in the crash. He also managed the club for a period in 1988.
In May 1988 Cubillas signed with the newly resurrected Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the American Soccer League. The Strikers went to the ASL title game where they fell to the Washington Diplomats. Following the loss to the Diplomats, the Strikers released Cubillas.
In March 1989, he signed with the Miami Sharks but was released on 3 July after scoring only one goal in eight games. As of June 1991 he was playing and coaching at Miramar Illusiones of the Gold Coast Soccer League in Florida.
1970 World CupEdit
Cubillas helped Peru advance to the quarter-finals of the 1970 FIFA World Cup in Mexico. He scored in all of Peru's four matches: once against Bulgaria, twice against Morocco, and once against West Germany, all in the first round. Cubillas then scored another goal in the quarter-final loss against eventual champions Brazil, and he thus finished as the third highest goal scorer in the tournament.
1975 Copa AmericaEdit
Peru did not qualify for the 1974 FIFA World Cup in West Germany, but a year later, Cubillas helped the Peruvian team win its second South American title, the Copa América 1975. Cubillas scored against Brazil in the semi-final, and then played in the play-off match in the final.
1978 World CupEdit
In the 1978 FIFA World Cup in Argentina, he scored five goals for Peru, finishing co-second highest goal scorer after Mario Kempes. Peru advanced to the second phase of the tournament thanks to goals from Cubillas: he scored two goals in the opening match against Scotland (one of which was an excellent free-kick), and he then scored a hat-trick in the game against Iran, including two penalties.
1982 World CupEdit
- Taça de Portugal: 1976–77
- Alianza Lima
- Fort Lauderdale Sun
- United Soccer League: 1984, 1985
- Copa América: 1975
- 1966 Peruvian Championship: Top Scorer
- 1970 Peruvian Championship: Top Scorer
- 1970 FIFA World Cup Best Young Player
- 1970 FIFA World Cup Bronze Boot
- 1972 Libertadores Cup Top Scorer
- 1972 South American Footballer of the Year
- 1973 CONMEBOL All-Star Team
- 1975 Copa America Best Player
- 1978 FIFA World Cup Silver Boot
- 1978 FIFA World Cup All-Star Team
- 1980 NASL All-Star teams, all-time
- 1981 NASL: Best Midfield
- 1981 NASL All-Star teams, all-time
- 1984 Fort Lauderdale Strikers: Top Scorer, all time.
- 2000 France Football: World Cup Top-100 1930–1990
- 2000 World Soccer: The 100 Greatest Footballers of All Time
- 2000 Placar: The 100 Players of the Century
- 2000 Placar: The 100 Players FIFA World Cup
- 2004 FIFA 100
- 2006 IFFHS' Best Players of the Century for Peru
- 2006 World – Player of the Century: Ranking Nº 48
- 2006 South American – Player of the Century: Ranking Nº 17
- 2007 The Best of The Best – Player of the Century: Top 50
- 2008 CONMEBOL All-Star first team 1958–2008
- 2008 Peru national football team all-time scoring leader
|1966||Alianza Lima||Primera División||23||19||–||?||?||?||?|
|Portugal||League||Taça de Portugal||Europe||Total|
|1977||Alianza Lima||Primera División||32||23||–||–||–||32||23|
|USA||League||Open Cup||North America||Total|
|1979||Fort Lauderdale Strikers||North American
|1984||Alianza Lima||Primera División||4||4||–||–||–||–||4||4|
|USA||League||Open Cup||North America||Total|
|1984||South Florida Sun||USL||5||4||–||–||–||5||4|
|1987||Alianza Lima||Primera División||13||3||13||3|
|USA||League||Open Cup||North America||Total|
|1988||Fort Lauderdale Strikers (1988–94)||ASL||12||7||–||–||–||–||12||7|
Note: Total statistics for his time in the NASL (1979–83) include playoff matches.
|4||1969-08-17||Lima, Peru||Bolivia||2–0||3–0||1970 World Cup Qualifier|
|8||1970-06-02||León, Mexico||Bulgaria||3–2||3–2||1970 World Cup|
|9||1970-06-02||León, Mexico||Morocco||1–0||3–0||1970 World Cup|
|10||1970-06-06||León, Mexico||Morocco||3–0||3–0||1970 World Cup|
|11||1970-06-10||León, Mexico||West Germany||1–2||1–3||1970 World Cup|
|12||1970-06-14||Guadalajara, Mexico||Brazil||2–3||2–4||1970 World Cup|
|13||1972-04-05||Mexico City, Mexico||Mexico||1–1||1–2||Friendly|
|18||1975-08-20||Lima, Peru||Chile||2–0||3–1||Copa America 1975|
|19||1975-09-30||Belo Horizonte, Brasil||Brazil||2–0||3–1||Copa America 1975|
|20||1977-07-17||Cali, Colombia||Bolivia||2–0||5–0||1978 World Cup Qualifier|
|21||1977-07-17||Cali, Colombia||Bolivia||3–0||5–0||1978 World Cup Qualifier|
|22||1978-06-03||Córdoba, Argentina||Scotland||2–1||3–1||1978 World Cup|
|23||1978-06-03||Córdoba, Argentina||Scotland||3–1||3–1||1978 World Cup|
|24||1978-06-11||Córdoba, Argentina||Iran||2–0||4–1||1978 World Cup|
|25||1978-06-11||Córdoba, Argentina||Iran||3–0||4–1||1978 World Cup|
|26||1978-06-11||Córdoba, Argentina||Iran||4–1||4–1||1978 World Cup|
- Karel Stokkermans (30 January 2000). "World Player of the Century". IFFHS' Century Elections. RSSSF. Retrieved 28 March 2011.
- "Cubillas dentro del once ideal sudamericano que cautivó al mundo". elbocon.pe (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 May 2020.
- Referente Máximo de la Selección Peruana
- Teófilo Cubillas Planet World Cup
- "Los mejores mediocampistas ofensivos de la historia, de 1960 a 2018". goal.com (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 May 2020.
- "Mejores Futbolistas de la Década del 70". listas.20minutos.es (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 May 2020.
- "30 volantes ofensivos que hicieron historia". elgrafico.com.ar (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 May 2020.
- Futbolista sudamericano del date 1971
- Futbolista sudamericano del date 1972
- Futbolista sudamericano del date 1975
- Futbolista sudamericano del date 1977
- Futbolista sudamericano del date 1978
- "World Cup Countdown: 12 Weeks to Go - The Story of Teofilo Cubillas, the Peruvian Pele". Sports Illustrated. 29 March 2018. Retrieved 23 August 2020.
- fifa.com, ed. (1 April 2018). "100 days, 100 players: Teofilo Cubillas". Retrieved 29 October 2020.
- "El 11 histórico más votado en la Copa América". Retrieved 4 January 2021.
- "Mejores LANZADORES de TIRO LIBRE de la HISTORIA del Fútbol". Retrieved 4 January 2021.
- Los 50 futbolistas más votados como Mejor Jugador del Siglo XX
- ESPN PROFILES -Teofilo Cubillas
- Clemente Lisi (14 February 2012). "What Ever Happened To... Teofilo Cubillas". US Soccer Players. Retrieved 18 March 2012.
- Peruvian Championship: Top Scorer Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- José Luis Pierrend (22 December 2000). "South American Player of the Year 1972". RSSSF. Retrieved 15 January 2012.
- Zindel, Josef (2018), "Die ersten 125 Jahre", 1974 - Cubillas, Pages 72 + 73, Friedrich Reinhardt Verlag, Basel
- Jan Alsos. "Teofilio Cubillas (Peru)". Planet World Cup. Retrieved 15 January 2012.
- Verein "Basler Fussballarchiv”. "CS Chênois - FC Basel 0:1 (0:1)". Verein "Basler Fussballarchiv”. Retrieved 16 November 2019.
- Antonio Zea and Marcel Haisma (9 January 2008). "European Champions' Cup 1973–74 – Details". RSSSF. Retrieved 16 November 2019.
- Verein "Basler Fussballarchiv”. "Teofilo Cubillas - FCB-Statistik". Verein "Basler Fussballarchiv”. Retrieved 16 November 2019.
- "Team Records and League Honors". Fort Lauderdale Strikers. Retrieved 18 March 2012.
- Philip Bennett (2 February 1988). "A Nation Grieves: With A Soccer Team's Death, Peru Loses An 'Island Of Hope'". Chicago Tribune. Tribune Company. Retrieved 4 November 2012.
- "ENTRENADORES". Historia Blanquiazul (in Spanish). Club Alianza Lima. Archived from the original on 28 August 2008. Retrieved 4 November 2012.
- CUBILLAS SIGNS WITH STRIKERS Miami Herald, The (FL) – Saturday, 7 May 1988
- The Year in American Soccer – 1988
- STRIKERS LOSE FINAL, RELEASE CUBILLAS Miami Herald, The (FL) – Sunday, 28 August 1988
- SHARKS OWNER CUTS CUBILLAS, CLAIMS POOR PLAY, LITTLE EFFORT Miami Herald, The (FL) – Monday, 3 July 1989
- JEFF RUSNAK (21 June 1991). "Back Trouble". SunSentinel. Retrieved 20 December 2012.
- Teofilo Cubillas: Legends of the Football World Cup Retrieved on 19 May 2013
- "Group D". World Cup 1970 results and line-ups. RSSSF. Retrieved 28 March 2011.
- "1970 FIFA World Cup Mexico". FIFA. Retrieved 19 December 2012.
- Martin Tabeira (12 August 2009). "Copa América 1975". RSSSF. Retrieved 28 March 2011.
- David Edbrooke (1 February 2008). "The 25 best free-kicks of all-time (#11)". The Telegraph. Retrieved 29 March 2011.
- "Group D". World Cup 1978 finals – results and line-ups. RSSSF. Retrieved 28 March 2011.
- CONMEBOL All-Star Team Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- NASL All-Star teams, all-time Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- France Football's World Cup Top-100 1930–1990 Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- World Soccer: The 100 Greatest Footballers of All Time Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- Placar's 100 Craques do Século Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- Os 100 Craques das Copas (Placar Magazine) Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- World – Player of the Century Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- South American – Player of the Century Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- "The Best of The Best" Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- CONMEBOL All-Star first team 1958–2008 Retrieved on 3 January 2009
- "Cubillas: Teófilo Cubillas Arizaga" (in Portuguese). Fora De Jogo. Retrieved 4 November 2012. (stats assumed to be League-only)
- Antonio Zea and Marcel Haisma (9 January 2008). "European Champions' Cup 1973–74 – Details". RSSSF. Retrieved 18 March 2012.
- David Litterer. "Part 1: Player Biographies, A-H". TOP INTERNATIONAL STARS IN THE NASL, 1967–1984. American Soccer History Archives. Retrieved 17 March 2012.
- "Teofilo Cubillas". North American Soccer League Players. Nasljerseys.com. Retrieved 18 March 2012.
- "Ft. Lauderdale Strikers". American Soccer League 1988 Season. A-League Archives. Retrieved 18 March 2012.
- "Teófilo Cubillas – Goals in International Matches". Rsssf.com. 3 November 2006. Retrieved 21 January 2009.
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