I received an e-mail from one of our readers today. "Hey Professor," it said, "Sergio Ramos wore a T-Shirt with some guy's picture on it. Who is that guy?" and I realized not everyone knows who Antonio Puerta was.
Sergio Ramos and Antonio Puerta both came up together through Sevilla's youth system, from the time they were little boys of around 10 years old or so. By 2004, both played for Spain's U-21 team and started with Sevilla's full squad. Around that time, in 2005, Sergio Ramos was well on his way to becoming a fixture on the Spanish National Team back line, and was signed by Real Madrid. Antonio Puerta kept starting for Sevilla. In the spring of 2006, Puerta scored the only goal in a 1-0 win over Schalke 04 to put Sevilla in the UEFA Cup final.