February 26, 2010 / 2:23 AM / 10 years ago

Paraguay great Erico's remains repatriated from Argentina

ASUNCION (Reuters) - Paraguayans paid homage to the great forward Arsenio Erico, joint all-time top scorer in the Argentine league, when his remains were repatriated to the country of his birth on Wednesday.

The player nicknamed the “red jumper”, because of his heading feats during his 12 years at leading Argentine side Independiente in the 1930s and 40s, shares the scoring record of 239 goals with the late Angel Labruna of River Plate.

The remains of Erico, who died in 1977 and was buried in Buenos Aires, were transported across the border on top of a fire engine in a two-kilometre caravan amid huge crowds and will be buried in a mausoleum at the national Defensores del Chaco stadium in Asuncion.

Erico, born in 1915 in Asuncion, is the only Paraguayan among eight South American players included in FIFA’s world top 50 in the 20th century.

He joined Independiente in 1934 from Paraguayan club Nacional and helped them win the Argentine title in 1938 and 1939. He never played for Paraguay.

Reporting by Mariel Cristaldo, editing by Ian Ransom; to query or comment on this story email sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com

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