Saturday, October 29, 2011

Alfredo Fernando Razón Gonzalez: A man before his time!

Why and what for? As I've often stated, I'm a coattail fan, I'm a newbie, I wasn't around when Philippine soccer meant hurt, humiliation and a dream or was it hallucination? Having said that, I'm no less a fan of Philippine soccer now, than those who were here way before me. But that doesn't mean I'm not learning our past, my past. So here I am discovering a bygone hero, a man I wished I've known when he was still playing. Ridiculous as it sounds, I wish he'd put on those old football shoes of his and start playing on the pitch again. He isn't that old at 33 years old, hey if Dan Palami can do it, why can't he? I don't care if he is not the player he used to be. I'd just like to say I saw, arguably the greatest Filipino bred soccer player of his generation play on the pitch again.

So I'll start with the basics. Born: In Parañaque City on Oct 1 1978. Like a large minority of 'Filipinos' he has mixed heritage. In his case, of Spanish- French descent. A hyper active kid,  his mother Terry Razon(deceased) enrolled him at the tender age of 6 into the Makati Football School(MFS), his tutor was the famed football guru, Tomas Lozano, the founder of MFS. Even at this young age, he was noted to be of superior 'genetics' and excellent speed which only increased as he got older. He attended school in Colegio de San Agustin in Makati and promptly became a star. After high school, attended Univerity of San Agustin in Iloilo at the same time playing semi professional soccer. He earned a soccer scholarship to the University of Portland, staying there for 2 years(1998/99) and playing for the Portland Pilots,  the school soccer team, honing his skills in the offensive side of the game, and finally graduating with an Engineering degree in Cnth. Somewhere in between all this, he played amateur soccer in France(couldn't find anymore info on clubs, etc).

Younger days

He received his first national team call up in 1997 for the South East Asian games and the next year played in the then, "Tiger Cup", now Suzuki Cup. By this time he was beginning to show his qualities on the pitch, most specifically his speed and propensity for scoring.

With his excellent showing in the SEA games of 2002, he was invited by a Vietnam League, or V-League team, Bank of East Asia(Ngân hàng Đông Á). He was supposed to be a partner of that teams star striker, Lê Huỳnh Đức. Unfortunately he left, leaving Freddy to be anointed the new "star" striker for the team. Here is a news report from a Vietnamese online new paper right before the contract signing. The date of the report is January 8th 2003(Google translated):

Philippines national team striker joined the Bank of East Asia

"Shortly after Le Huynh Duc broke up with Bank of East Asia, leading the club was in talks with striker pillars of Philippines in Tiger Cup qualification last - Alfredo Gonzalez. The first procedure to force his team was complete. This afternoon, players will be available in HCM City to sign a contract.

Nguyen Tien Huy, the new CEO Club of East Asia Bank, said in a telephone conversation yesterday, Alfredo Gonzalez has agreed to all conditions set by the Bank of East Asia offers.

Secretary-General Michel Philippines Football Federation has sent an official letter Club Bank of East Asia, said Alfredo Gonzalez will be the messengers of friendship between the two countries, and this is a good opportunity to learn football Philippines Vietnam.

Gonzalez said he played to Vietnam mainly to raise the level of football (the club he played for amateur Kaya, and in a transport company of the family). According to experts, Gonzalez is a player with speed, agility ability to score".

Unfortunately, Freddie came at a time when they were already in decline. His first year(2003) saw them at 9th place in the V league premier division of 12 total teams finishing with a 7 win, 8 loss and 7 tie record. The following year saw the team being bought out and renamed Thép Pomina, Pomina being a Vietnamese steel mill. They finished with a record of 4 wins, 12 loss, and 6 draws, 12th and last place which also secures for them the dreaded relegation to the Vietnamese 1st division. Here the team was renamed  Thép Pomina Tiền Gian, when they moved to the locality of Tien Gian. In 2005, his last year with the team, they finished with another dismal showing finishing 13th in the 13 team Vietnamese 1st division with a record of 5 wins, 11 loss and 8 draws. Unfortunately I have not found any rosters or individual stats for Freddie during his stay with the team. It is important to note that in one Philippine newspaper article dated 2009, mentions him as playing in Vietnam for only 1 year.

With wife Anne
After this season Freddy decided to concentrate more into his new found interest in Surfing and other business ventures such as bringing in the Brazilian Havaianas brand flip flops into the Philippines. With his varied interests, he opened Aloha Board sports catering to skaters and surfers alike. Google and find his online website, it's very well made and you'd think it was an American or Australian site if it wasn't for the Filipino faces. He also owns a skate shop in Taguig at the Global City called 5-O(Google this term if you are not a skater/I've heard he was selling this shop?). He has been married to Anne Arcenas- Gonzalez and she serves as partner in his various companies.

Before and after his journey to Vietnam he was involved with Kaya FC. Now he is a chairman of the UFL team, Pachanga FC. Here is a news article about Freddie and his Pachanga FC team Captain.

Pachanga FC: Motivations and inspirations

October 14, 2011

During one lazy moment, Pachanga FC Team Manager Jojo Rodriguez asked team owner Freddie Gonzalez, “Why do this, boss? Why put up a football team and spend a lot of money?”
Gonzalez, who once played football for Colegio de San Agustin aside from the national team, looked up for a brief moment from what he was doing on his laptop and grinned. “Because I love the game.”
Like many other clubs, it is love for the game that has also brought the players of Pachanga FC together. And when you consider their diverse backgrounds and how they all got together you wonder if it’s lightning in a bottle.
On an afternoon with a hint of rain, team captain Yves Ashime and Rodriguez go up to the Gatorade offices in Bonifacio Global City for a sponsorship meeting. Despite missing a tooth, Ashime readily flashes a warm smile. He realizes that a sponsorship here and there can mean bigger things for his team and himself. He’s learned not to take things for granted.
Lured by a faux football promoter to play in Europe, he was instead dumped in the Philippines without any direction or any future. He hooked up with the old Union team to play and earn a living that is far from anything that he imagined when he first left his home country. When the popularity of football increased tenfold with the success of the Azkals, he was given renewed hope. “Blessings,” he says. “A day you live is a blessing. Anything given to you is another.”
Now he is captain for a football team in a strange land that he now calls home.

Well, there you go. All I know about the man, Freddy Gonzalez. I keep thinking over and over again in my head, what would have happened if he was still around now still playing for the national team. Probably as its Captain barking out assignments on the field, still making us proud and he wouldn't have to do it by himself anymore. Yes, I'm sure you're suppressing your laughter right about now, but remember the Singaporean player that broke our hearts less than a month ago? Alexander Duric? Yup, he's 42 years old. Almost 10 years older then Freddie. Oh well, its my dream anyway. Thanks for making us proud when there weren't many things to be proud of back then Mr. Gonzalez... 

The Caveat: It's not a wiki article so I didn't include citations but if you look closely you'll find what I found. I didn't add much of anything about his current doings as I wanted to focus on his International Football career, it's beginning and end. This blog is basically clips of information I found and put together so you won't have too and if you have other pertinent data I would love to add it on this blog and site you for it. Don't be afraid to comment if you've got something constructive to add.
A muscular Freddie doing his new passion
Thanks to spam and tophercap of who jump started a dead end for me, muchas gracias compas! Viet 10, who knows more about Freddie than most Filipinos! Thanks to for the last photograph.


  1. The Big Guy just scored 7 goals against SGU and was invited to the Azkal camp again after more than half a decade!

  2. im still looking for that video of him in 2006. it showed some videos of him playing in the tiger cup, as well as the vietnamese league. sayang. wala na ngayon yun. try searching for Globe football freddy gonzales and it might turn up


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