Home » Former Valencia star Vincente Guillot reveals how George Best was expected to make Spain switch

Former Valencia star Vincente Guillot reveals how George Best was expected to make Spain switch

Spanish league were in awe of United’s wing wizard, says former international

by Paul Speller

Valencia and Spain hero, Vicente Guillot, has revealed that he expected former Manchester United star George Best to join Real Madrid.

Guillot, who helped Valencia to domestic and European success in the 1960s, has spoken about the ex United legend and how he was viewed by Spanish players of the time.

Speaking in an interview with Tribalfootball.com, Best was a “regular topic of conversation inside La Liga dressing rooms”, according to Guillot.

And with one third of United’s holy trinity setting European football alight at the time, Guillot says that Best was watched closely even in Spain.

Real Madrid dominated both Spanish and European football around the time Guillot and Best were dazzling with their attacking exploits.

But despite Madrid securing seven La Liga titles in Guillot’s nine seasons with rivals Valencia, the diminutive winger helped “Los Che” win back-to-back Fairs Cup wins in 1961-62 and 1962-63 as well as Copa del Rey success.

And while Northern Ireland star Best was fast becoming United’s main man and a European superstar, his stock was just as high overseas as the Spaniards watched on in awe.

Guillot goes on to explain how Matt Busby’s side, and the man dubbed ‘El Beatle’ in particular, were greatly admired throughout the Spanish game.

“Yes, without a shadow of a doubt. George Best was undoubtedly admired by players in my time. He was a ‘grandissimo’ footballer. He was a winger and an attacking midfielder. I think he played out on the right”, he recalls.

And the now 81-year-old former Spain international recalls how it was widely assumed Best would swap the red of Manchester for the white of Madrid.

“I heard that Real Madrid were after him for a while and were close to signing him. You heard a lot about George Best in those days. So, when you hear a lot about a particular player it’s a) because they are a very good footballer or b) they are a very bad person! (Laughs)”, joked Guillot.

“The middle ground doesn’t exist here!”, ended Guillot, who played for Valencia over 150 times, and whose popularity at the time even generated a fans club known as the ‘Guillotistas’.

George Best of course would not only go on to stay at Manchester United, but eclipsed Guillot’s appearances by turning out for the Old Trafford side 470 times, scoring 179 goals.

And it was only last month that the Reds’ famous number 7 was fondly remembered as always, as fans commemorated 17 years since the untimely death of Manchester’s son, Georgie Best.

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