Paolo Guerrero | Ricardo Ade, Guerrero’s boss at LTU: “Paulo makes us feel like we have the same dream” | RMMD EMCC | Soccer-International

How would you describe your current soccer moment before the final of the Copa Sudamericana with Liga de Quito?

Thank God for everything I am going through. It was never easy, I had to do a lot of things and travel all over the place, but doors opened. Thank God things are working for me.

Soccer was the driving force and reason to improve your quality of life in Haiti. What sacrifices have you had to make?

My family always loved football, but so did my school. My dad told me that you have to educate yourself, keep things in mind, and get good grades is the only way to play football. It’s regular fighting, school, and playing with good grades. There is poverty, but Haiti has a lot of talent. What’s happening is that we don’t have a globally recognized championship, and we don’t have talented kids playing soccer. In my case it was catching my dream. I had an American visa and I traveled to America when I was seventeen. There I started looking for my exit door. Thank God all the time I was playing in the third division of America, a person saw me playing like that and told me there was a team in Miami and I tried out and made the team. This is how my entire journey began.

Do you always play center?

I started as a goalkeeper, I was seven years old, but my father didn’t like that position. Then I started as a center, but I was also a midfielder. There are times on the right and I feel better as a center.

Which player did you always follow when you started in football?

Sergio Ramos. He is my idol. A central defender I have always admired.

Do you do a special type of work out to take care of your body and stay mentally strong?

I became stronger because of everything I went through, but I also had a dream, a talent. That is not enough, I always wake up in odd jobs to earn a few more days or years. I take good care of myself during the week.

Have you ever been to Thailand?

It was in the 2013 Gold Cup with the national team. I had a friend who played for Orlando City and I joined the team, but I was waiting for a pass to play in the second division of America, but it didn’t come to me. I couldn’t introduce myself. Then the same friend was playing in Thailand. From there I started looking for contacts, I went to Thailand and the same person was a representative. When I got there it left me stranded and I had no one to talk to. Thank God he spoke in English. I ate once a day. I wanted to train, those are the sacrifices one has to make to fulfill your dream. There are always things in my way, I always go with my passport and they say I’m Haitian, they think I’m from some part of Africa. More racist comments, but the only thing that matters to me is playing football. My family lived in America and they helped me with some money and the schedule was complicated. I was very alone, but these were the things I had to go through. One thing I have, that animal, the cheetah, I never put my hands down.

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You speak Spanish very well…

Yes I learned in Chile. When I arrived in 2107, I didn’t understand Spanish. No one spoke English or French, and I had Haitian friends, but not close ones. Everyone spoke Spanish, but learning fast was a plus. At first I spoke with symptoms, but thank God I can now speak with you.

You have a strange connection…

Yes, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Ecuador, too. My Spanish is like listening. I listen and learn.

How did you come to play in Santiago Morning?

I was on vacation and the conversation came up that they were looking for a center. I had a tourist visa, they paid me through checks, and the Miami team was on good terms with everyone. That is not to blame anyone. I went back to my country to play for Don Bosco in my country for a year and it was good and it opened doors to go to Chile. The same people told him about me, they called me and I sent a video to Santiago Morning. They are things one goes through.

Later moved to Ecuador. Mushuc Runa, Aucas (2022 champion) and now Quito in the league this year…

I open doors for my guys. Personally, I live alone. I pay more attention. My family is in America. I enjoy football but keep my head on straight. I take care of myself, I prepare for games. I am Haitian. Wherever I go, if you say Haitian, they look me down, but when they talk about my country they spread their wings. I have family in Haiti and America.

What does family say about your sporting achievements?

My four year old son lives in America with his mother. My mother also lives in America and my father died when I was seventeen. One of the things I love is that I get to see the beautiful things that I go through in life. He does not enjoy nice things. He always accompanies me when I go out to play. If I could ask for one thing, it would be to bring my dad. My mother and sisters are happy with me. They know how I am, I take the time to analyze and summarize everything.

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You pray a lot and talk to your father through the word…

All my achievements are for him. I visit him every time I go to Haiti. I believe in God, he spoke to my father. It gives me strength.

Many see you as the best center in the Copa Sudamericana. How do you feel?

I’m always hungry, I’m never satisfied, I want more. If people talk about me like that, I put my feet on the ground. I am not better than anyone. Make way for those coming behind. I raise the flag of my country.

Guerrero’s existence

You are a teammate of the Peruvian team’s all-time record holder, Paulo Guerrero…

Very happy to have him in the team. Simple, humble guy. He has a good personality. He came to the team and treated all of us very well. He has respect for us. It’s something that creates good energy in the locker room. Makes us feel like we all have the same dream. He matches us and we love him very much. Fans love it. It is important that we receive Him.

What does it mean to be on an attacker’s team in your experience?

Usually he creates space and plays well when he is on the court. This year has helped us a lot so far.

How is it in practice?

When I played against him, I had to mark him and it was different. Learning from him is a plus. This makes you stand out against other pioneers who are at your level. With respect to all. Having him up front, you can’t give him a meter and then you have to look for the ball inside.

Here in Peru there are people on the edge of the forties who criticize him and do not highlight his validity…

That is the world we live in today. What are they criticizing? The quality of player he is, those things don’t affect him. Peru gets one more fan because of Paulo when they play Ecuador. I have teammates who play for the national team. I’m a football player and when people talk, the only way to shut them up is on the field. The same thing happened to me when I got into the league, but I knew what I wanted to work on. I stayed calm, I had a plan, I took care of myself and things worked out.

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How do you see yourself in this final against Brazil’s Fortaleza in Uruguay?

Personally, I have never played in a Copa Sudamericana final. Now it was difficult to lead in Emelek, the team was good. Getting to the finals was tough. A single party. The person who prepares best in that competition will win the final. I believe we are. Fans are very excited.

Ecuador will end the year as champions of rival Sudamericana and continue their fight to qualify for the World Cup with Haiti…

Let’s move confidently, but gradually. First you need to think about the end result. We travel on Wednesday and go into the final with full heads up. You should enjoy it and do good things.

How do you expect to see yourself this Saturday after the game in Punta del Este?

With the flag of Haiti.

Are you into cables?

Yes, before every game I play black panther, it’s one of the cables.

Have you always had that dreadlocked hair?

I’ve had it for four years. It’s my hair.

Listen to all reggae…

In everything. And I listen to reggaeton, cumbia, salsa. I live alone and one of the things that makes me happy is music. I also prepare my food. Now I watch the game (LDU). I paused it to talk to you. I watch all the games, study the competitors, and I’m very self-critical to see things that need improvement.

Paolo Guerrero also needs to listen to good music…

He always bothers me. When I get to the gym and see him already working out. As a teenager you learn those things. He did. He says that I put on salsa and it bothers me, Haitian music is a good vibe.

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Wilmer Robles

A sports journalist with over fifteen years of experience. Research, digital platforms, television, radio and social networks. Specializing in Interviewing and Field Safety.

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