This site was born as Hasta Lo Gol Siempre on Saturday, 10th of February 2007, and is run and maintained by me, Sam Kelly. It changed its name to Hasta El Gol Siempre (which unlike the previous name – thought up when my Spanish was still in its formative stages – makes sense) a few months later. The site is only sporadically updated these days, but if you want a regular fix of Argentine football during the season you can find me and a few friends each week on Hand Of Pod, the internet’s first, last, finest and only English-language Argentine football podcast. We take breaks during the summer and the winter, so if you’re coming to us in the middle or near the turn of the year, do check back.
I’m from England. I was born in Gloucester, grew up in North Somerset, and went to university in Manchester. Somewhere along the line I got the travel bug, and from my first visit to Buenos Aires it’s stayed with me. I’ve been watching Argentine football since 2002, and writing about it since 2006. In September 2008, I became the South America correspondent for ESPN’s football website, ESPNFC (which was then called Soccernet).
I support Manchester United, Barcelona (I have cousins from there) and River Plate. I also look out for Oldham Athletic – my dad’s team, when he actually watches football – Bristol Rovers, England and Argentina, as well as various sides in other countries from Rampla Juniors in Uruguay to Cúcuta in Colombia and Fiorentina in Italy. I have a collection of football scarves which grows every time I go on holiday. If you’d like to buy me one yourself, I won’t complain.
My football-writing journey began in October 2006, when I started writing a weekly column on the Argentine football scene for the wonderful UK website Voice Of Football (whose archive is no longer online) until the 1st June 2007, when they closed down. This blog was originally set up as an extension of that, to fit in all the stuff there was no space for in my articles. I’ve written on the Argentine scene for Pitch Invasion, and was part of the team behind (English language) Eastern European site Extra Football, for whom I wrote, among other things, a football traveller’s guide to Buenos Aires. Other publications (online and print) I’ve contributed to include Soccer Source, Finnish magazine Veikkaaja, UK magazine When Saturday Comes, In Bed With Maradona, the website of the Hong Kong Jockey Club, Howler, CubeGoal, and UK newspapers including the Mirror, Independent and Daily Telegraph. You’ll find links to some of these (and other sites I like) on the HEGS Links page.
As well as writing, I have also given talks to groups on study trips to Buenos Aires, looking at the relationships between football and Argentine culture, the history of the game in the city and the country as a whole, and my experiences in freelancing, writing and moving to a new country. If you’re organising such a trip and would like me to meet your group, I’d love to hear from you, so drop me a line!
I live in Buenos Aires, and if you’re paying the place a visit please get in touch if you fancy a drink, a steak or (of course) a football match – see the Contact page. Any questions regarding the history of the Argentine league, or how it’s organised? They’ll hopefully be answered in the History page, but if not, get in touch.
Everything on this site (except the photos – some of which are mine and some contributed. I stopped nicking them years ago, which is why so few of the posts on here nowadays are illustrated at all) is © and all rights reserved me unless clearly stated otherwise, and if you’d like to quote bits on your own site, please mention my name as the author (not your own name), and preferably link back to the original article. I wish this didn’t need saying, but it does.
There used to be many ways to interact with HEGS, but they have gradually fallen by the wayside as maintaining them all was a bit of a pain. However, you can email me via the Contact page linked to above, and here I am on Twitter.
Hi Sam. This is Subhankar here. Best wishes for your new webiste.
Hey, Sam! I was so glad when someone tipped me off about this site. I’m an aficionada of Argentine football, but my Spanish isn’t good enough to completely understand what I read on the Spanish sites. I think what you’re doing is great. I do have a question, though: how do I post a question? Do I have to have a blog, or just a user name?
My favorite Argentines: Maradona (como no!), Batistuta, Messi, Gago, Sorin, y el burrito Ortega. In the sub20 group, I have a feeling Mouche is going to shine.
The question which I’d like to post is about Ortega; I really want to know what’s happening with him, his treatment, etc., but I’m having the hardest time finding information. Also, I’ve been a fan of his for years and know he’s going through a hard time, I wanted to send him a card or something, but have no idea how.
I read the other day that Argentina will play the US in the first round of the Copa America this summer. I’m American, but on June 28, I’ll be wearing my blue and white jersey and singing “Vamos, Vamos, Argentina!”
Love – Lex
Hi Lex (and Sub!), thanks for the comments.
I’ve made Lex’s comment visible, and am answering it publicly, because it raises a few good questions people might be wondering about, and until I can work out how to put up an FAQ (and, for that matter, until I actually have enough questions that are being frequently asked…), it’s a good starting point. So…
To post a question on the blog, you can just do what you’ve done – make a comment on a story. Obviously, try and keep it on-topic. Or you can email me – the site’s email address is at the bottom of the profile on this page – and ask whether I could explain something either in the blog (if it’s a good idea I’ll do a short piece on it), or to you personally.
Regarding Ortega, it’s all up in the air at the moment. He played for River in the opening match of the Summer Tournament, in January against Racing (I was there…), scored a penalty, and returned to Buenos Aires the following day to continue treatment. He’s got an alcohol-dependency problem, as you’re probably aware, but River are insisting they’ll stick by him and want him to play when he’s ready to.
Regarding the best way to send him your good wishes – send me an email and I’ll reply with an idea. I don’t want to put it up in public in case people see it and decide to abuse the system!
Hope you continue to enjoy the site as it grows…
jambo(hello)great idea, having a site,where i can get,whats on,argentine football.BIG fan.reuest,about team of 94 w/cup.players,i.e.f.redondo formally r.madrid & ac.milan.rodriguez,isla,sensini,balbo.etc.current team,its strength,potential to make impact on w/cup.thanks & keep me posted.
This website is unbelievable! I thought I was the world’s only Manchester United / River Plate fan! I write occasionally for Red Issue magazine but follow River just as passionately. Like Lex, my Spanish isn’t good enough to follow most of the River websites. I am fortunate that living here in New York, I get a lot of River’s games on Fox Sports Espanol or Fox Soccer Channel (and I’m working on my Spanish). It’s great to have a place to keep up with River news (and to vent after bad results).
Great work Sam!
hey Sam, you’re doing a great job!
I’m an argentinean guy living in London, and i found your website. It’s really nice to see the passion you are dedicating to cover the futbol in my country, and to have some english report of what’s going on in the league, because we provide lots of great players to Europe, and nobody knows where they come from.
I support Boca Juniors and Chelsea ( :P ) but i sympathize with your blog. I must admit that Manchester United is making the difference this year because you have Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the greatest talents in the last few years, and im eager to see the FA cup final between Chelsea and ManU.
I have to admit that, while football in the UK is very very passional, the overmarketization of football is drawing out the people that cheers and suffers for his colors, in favor of the wealthy that can pay the tickets (i haven’t attended any match yet, except Argentina vs Brazil at Arsenal’s stadium)
if you go to my country, don’t miss the chance to be in the Monumental, or even better, La Bombonera. Just the thought of being back there at least for one single match thrills me. It’s beautiful, it’s futbol in the purest form.
you have the dream theater, we have a stadium that beats with the crowd :)
Thanks for the comment Fernando, glad you like the site. I’ve been to your beautiful country three times, and seen a River match each time – twice at the Monumental and this January in Mar del Plata in the Summer Tournament. I agree with you completely… your stadia are a mess, but they’re a lot more enjoyable to watch the game in!
Chelsea still have to get by Blackburn you know. You’ll probably scrape an injury time winner (we beat them 4-1) ;)
yep fair play with the site & the voice of football column. I was lucky enough to spend 4 months in this amazing country last year so it’s nice to keep up to date whats going on, some of my best memories are from standing on the terraces, whether it be in the Monumental or La Bombonera or even at some of the smaller clubs like Banfield & Godoy Cruz.
Do you know of any sites that show the games live, I use rojadirecta.com sometimes but it can be a bit unpredictable. Although I hear there’s a bar here in Dublin that’s showing el superclassico next weekend!
Tati… I couldn’t possibly say on here, I’m afraid…
It’s Andrew here, a fellow columnists on VOF. Great stuff you’ve got here, I take a great interest in South American football so your site is a great resource.
Keep up the good work.
I found your site thanks to the page Goltv, and I found it excelent! I am very surprised that there are people that dedicate a whole page to our football! I am argentinian, born in Mendoza and I am married with a french guy, and that is why I am in France now. Thanks God my husband adores the football and we spend lot of time talking and regarding it. I think that in France at least , soccer is popular, but not as passional as in Argentina, and it is that that I really miss. When I heard the public crowding at “la bombonera” my heart beats very fast because I remember that soccer is a common topic for an argentinian, even if he doesn’t know too much! I am a big supporter of Boca, and Godoy Cruz (is from Mendoza); here in France, Caen (ligue 2) and in England, all the teams where there is an argentinian!!
ah, I don’t know if you agree, but in this moment, I think that there are more brazilian players in Europe than argentinians…am I wrong?
Ok, sorry for writting a lot!!!
Thanks for doing this site, it’s really good. I got into Argentine by starting to collect Boca and River Plate shirts. But with learning more about the teams and the way they play football, I thought I should be a River Plate fan! It must be great to go to a game and I intend to do so once my degree is finished. So what you could do as part of this site is produce a guide to getting to matches in Argentina. I think it’s a good idea and anyone else who knows could offer to help eh?
Also, do they have a club shops at the Monumental?
Awaiting the new 07 River black 3rd kit and a sponsered training shirt in the post. (Yeah I’m a sucker but that’s because I’m an armchair Man U fan, Ok I get to one or two games a season. However I do go to all my local team’s home matches, Hyde United, so I don’t totally miss out!)
Anyways, good luck with the site.
Hi Maria, thanks for the kind words and if you’d like me to remove your email address (I don’t know if you were aware it would be going up on a public page), let me know.
Matty – glad you like the site. As far as a guide is concerned, I always just went along to the stadium and bought tickets, and went in myself. There are tour companies (you’ll see them advertised in the hotels and hostels) who can do it all for you, but you’ll be paying perhaps US$100 for a US$5 match ticket, so I wouldn’t say it’s worth it. Anyone who wants more in-depth advice on this can get in touch with me through email, and some words about it will appear on the site at a later date.
As far the club shop goes, they have an Adidas shop there called ‘RiverManía’, which is rubbish. When I went in 2003 they’d run out of home shirts (had plenty of Milan and other European teams made by Adidas, though!).
I’ve got a mate from Hyde as well, believe it or not…
Hi Sam, I like the site, and love argentina’s soccer… i’m from Argentina, Buenos Aires. I’ve a web page of argentina’ soccer.. http://www.futbolarg.wordpress.com
Sorry but i don’t speak english very well.
“His teams are Manchester United, Barcelona (he’s got cousins from there) and River Plate. He’d love to include England in that list, but they’re stretching the term ‘team’ somewhat at the moment.”
Ever heard about supporting your team through thin and thinner? Although looking at your 3 other teams the word glory hunter springs to mind.
Perhaps I should clarify. I still support England. I just don’t feel they can be described as a ‘team’ at the moment. A little criticism never hurt anyone…
Hey man, Im from Argentina and Im doing a PhD here in London. I read your blog about Tevez in the Guardian, I I agree with you. Let’s see I hope that he at the end will stay in Englan. Good luck in your blog.
Thanks and welcome, Guille. Don’t forget to nominate Tevez in the awards if you think he deserves it (or another player if you don’t think Carlitos should get it)!
I forgot the most important thing my team is Boca Junior (the club or Maradona, Tevez, Riquelme, and so many others …) http://www.bocajuniors.com.ar/english/ . I was surprised when I was walking in London for the first time and in a shop I saw the Boca Juniors and the River Plate T-shirt in sail. I din’t know that anyone will know about these teams in Uk. Here I din’t decided witch team I will sport. I went to watch a game in the League One Oldham vs Leyton and was a really good fun :) If someone wants to go to Argentina in the British embassy (Bs As) you can get good advices (is a nice country but you have to be little careful about the security I’m from Cordoba (other beautiful city) and every time that Im in Buenos Aires Im more careful about it ). , I think that u can sent them and email. Regards To all of you Guillermo
PD: If you travel to Argentina please please you have to eat Asado that is BBQ you will really like it.
Guille, you could choose a lot worse than Oldham. You didn’t watch them at home, did you?!
And don’t mention asado to me. Every time I heard that word I want to be back in BA…
Hi Sam – I just wanted to come in and check in on the progress of your column. Looks like it is going well and you’ve got quite a few dedicated readers. Keep up the good work!
Another Man United fan here, and also a sort of Argentina fan.
I went to the Argentina v Holland game in Frankfurt at the WC 2006 and was supposed to be in a section of the ground near the corner, however, i went and stood with the Argentina fans in their little section, (something i ofthen have to do at United aways to be near mates etc…) and was impressed by the level of noise and passion they showed, also had a few beers with a few of them later that night as it appears all Argentines love the premier league and United especially.
Would love to be going to the superclassico next sunday, but the FA cup semi final will have to do. ;-)
I really liked your blog!
Hola Sam, soy Seba (Gibraltar). Encontré tu web y esta muy buena! Te mando saludos desde el sur, espero que pronto estes por acá. Saludos de un Bostero!