The legendary ‘Hand of God’ match surprised the trio of Cerati, Bosio and Alberti in the UK, in the middle of a Simple Minds show they had attended as part of a trip to Europe. Among furious English fans, the musicians had to scramble to try to go unnoticed and avoid the experience.
The goals echo in the distance, say the words of zero spring , perhaps one of Soda Stereo’s most recognizable anthems. A phrase that was well fleshed out on the day of the legendary match between the teams of Argentina and England for the quarter-finals of the Mexico 86 World Cup, that memorable match in which Diego Maradona stood out for the ” hand of God” and the Big Goal after dribbling five English players who made him a legend.
That day, as he remembered a recent note from Guardian surprised Soda Stereo on a trip to the UK. The Argentinians had embarked for Europe in June of that year, in the middle of the boreal summer, to make some first connections in the old world. The idea, says the journalist Sergio Marchi in his biography of Gustavo Cerati entitled Sometime ago, had been started by the Ohanián Producciones agency, which managed the band, paying for the tour with the money that had been earned so far. Cerati, Zeta Bosio and Charly Alberti were joined by keyboardist Fabian “el zorrito” Quintiero, a regular collaborator of the band on stage.
At that time, Soda Stereo had already released its first two albums ( Stereo soda 1984 and nothing personal 1985) and began to generate their first international tours. In May of that year, they crossed Chile for the first time, where they participated in the stellar Tuesday the 13th. “A group that is one of your favorites. The first applause tonight for the Argentinian rock band Soda Stereo”, was presented by the always calm César Antonio Santis. There they left a good impression, which would be essential in reviving the band’s career just a year later.
But in Europe, things were a little more difficult. First stage in Spain, bubbling with activity due to the Madrid movement and the opening after Francoism, where the group did not have such an enthusiastic welcome. But they did not back down. From there they moved to France to cross to where they really wanted to go, England. The British sound had been the main source of inspiration for the band and at that time they marveled at the dark side of The Cure. The initial idea was therefore to see Robert Smith’s group at the Glastonbury Festival. But things took a different turn.
The entirety of Soda Stereo attended shows by The Cure and The Psychedelic Furs. The next day they had tickets to a Simple Minds concert at the Milton Keynes Bowl. Studious, Gustavo Cerati knew the group which, at the time, lit up the discotheques with the hit Do not forget me. That day, however, the audience was restless. The concert coincided with the game between England and Argentina in the World Cup ; a football rivalry that had lasted since the violent World Cup match of 1966 and was aggravated by the recent Falklands War. And there they were, a group of Argentinian boys among a sea of Brits waiting for a win.
“We went to the Milton Keynes Bowl, a giant hall in the city of Milton Keynes where there were nearly two hundred thousand people watching Simple Minds at the time of its hit Alive and healthy. They also played The Cult, Big Audio Dynamite and The Waterboys, among others,” says Zeta Bosio in I know this placehis memory book.
As they watched the shows, Lloyd Cole & The Commotions bassist took to the stage to tell people the outcome. “They were losing 1-0 after the mythological goal of Maradona with ‘the hand of God’ ‘ -Zeta points out-. Immediately a general roar was unleashed, while we looked at each other with suppressed joy and a great deal of panic; basically, we had to hide to protect our physical well-being.
There, the musicians decided to hide. “We had no better idea than to start speaking with a very heavy accent (we were trying to sound Spanish) and when we found out that we had finally beaten England, we felt a huge desire to celebrate. We experience the double joy of feeling enormous happiness and being able to confront it with their frustration live, surrounded by a sea of depressed people”.
“We were afraid they would hit us Quintiero recalls in Sometime ago-; the backing band was The Waterboys and we got a standing ovation: a goal from England. We couldn’t watch the game. The fucking mother.” But at the final whistle, with the triumph of the albicelestes, the musicians have trouble managing the emotion. “The four of us were holding hands. -adds Quintiero-, we kissed in silence. Twenty years after these two goals, one from ‘the hand of God’ and the other, I told the anecdote to Maradona in Frankfurt”.
The European tour was successful for Soda Stereo. In addition to watching bands, they enjoyed buying clothes and redefining their image and sound. An experience that upon their return they captured in the fundamental album panels. “We came back from this trip with a completely renewed look, with things that weren’t available in Argentina, like rockabilly type platform shoes. , diapers and pointy boots that were all the rage,” explains Zeta Bosio. “We came back from the UK dressed like an international band of the day, completely given over to a radical change that meant goodbye to the gaucho breeches that had accompanied us this far.”
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I am Robert Harris and I specialize in news media. My experience has been focused on sports journalism, particularly within the Rugby sector. I have written for various news websites in the past and currently work as an author for Athletistic, covering all things related to Rugby news. With a passion for storytelling, I have also worked behind the scenes of various radio programs and podcasts as a researcher.