For those unlucky not to witness Redondo play, allow me a homily: His presence on the pitch can be best characterized by an unlikely adjective for any physical activity—glib. He appeared to play with indifference but he always had the ball, which he received like a stray pill of mercury returning to its base. He didn’t run so much as he sauntered and ghosted past defenders the way you might expect a rakish dandy to push past his scrubbier competition in a cocktail lounge. Elegant to the point of haughty, after being chopped down by defenders he would rise as if he had been knighted. Alex Ferguson (a real knight) bemusedly asked if Redondo had magnets in his boots after the Argentine flummoxed Manchester United’s midfield at Old Trafford.

That piece had me contemplating an “Art of Fielding” knock-off about soccer.


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