Javier Hernandez is a phenomenon in Mexico, his father and grandfather both represented the country in their days, and Hernandez has done even better with his footballing career. Having played in multiple countries with multiple teams, Chicharito, as he is fondly called, featured for big names like Manchester United, Sevilla, and West Ham United. We have a look at the 10 Things You Didn’t Know about Javier Hernandez.
He Inspired a Cartoon Character
Starting with the most attractive fact about Javier Hernandez: Eddie Mort created a cartoon character inspired by Javier Hernandez. The Mucha Lucha cartoonist had also paid homage to other footballing heroes namely David Beckham, Park Ji Sung, Shinji Kagawa, Lionel Messi, and Diego Maradona among others, but his rendition of Hernandez was the one which he wanted to carry on and create a comic novel/series with.
First Mexican on the Big Stage
Mexican stalwarts like Hugo Sánchez and Rafael Márquez before him had played in Europe and made a name for themselves. However, in the 2009 Final of the Champions League, Chicharito made history as he became the first Mexican to play in the showpiece event, representing Manchester United against Barcelona. Alex Ferguson’s United that day were brushed aside by Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona by a 3-1 scoreline. Inspiring to know about Javier Hernandez for Mexicans!
First to Score against the World Champions
Hernandez made history in national colors again as he became the first player to find the net against reigning World Champions Spain after the latter had lifted the World Cup in South Africa. Mexico was facing the Spanish armada in a friendly to commemorate Mexican independence when Chicharito scored past Casillas – the first goal Spain had conceded since their group stage surrender to Chile. Amazing about Javier Hernandez?
He started as a Full-Back
Hernandez may be Mexico’s all-time highest goal-scorer now, but he had to prove his mettle before he got the nod as a striker. When he started training for Chivas in Mexico, his favored position was right back. It was his lightning pace and finishing instinct that the coach decided to put him up front – a move that paid off ultimately. Only learning stays with you. Doesn’t this story about Javier Hernandez indicate that?
About Javier Hernandez & Chicharito Day
Javier has a huge fanbase, in Mexico as well as abroad. He is followed by millions of fans and adored immensely. His female followers, a group on social media called Chicharitas, celebrate 14 August every year as Chicharito Day. August is the favored month because of the number of letters in the word, which is similar to that of his first name, and 14 is a sign of tribute to his jersey. Fan base reality about Javier Hernandez!
His Portrait is worth 500 Pounds
Another interesting tale about Javier Hernandez is about portraits. Manchester United Foundation paired up with Turkish Airlines to raise funds. As part of the fundraising, Craig Redman made portraits of major United stars including Wayne Rooney, Ryan Giggs, and Paul Scholes. Javier Hernandez featured on that list and his portrait sold for a whopping 500 pounds in the auction.
A World Cup winner at U17 level
Javier Hernandez already has a World Cup Winners’ medal among his collectibles. He featured and starred in the FIFA U17 World Cup in 2005 alongside Carlos Vela and Giovani dos Santos. While none of the aforementioned players made it big in Europe, Chicharito went on to reach great heights and earn the love of fans all over the World.
Foodie vs Favorite Dish
Contrary to popular belief that athletes shy away from food, Chicharito is another example of a foodie and his favorite dish is ‘tortas ahogadas’. It is a traditional sandwich and hails from his hometown of Guadalajara in Mexico. It is a baguette covered in spicy red sauce. Food love it says about Javier Hernandez!
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He wore the Same Jersey Number as his Father
There are several similarities between Javier Hernandez and his dad. While his dad also represented El Tri in the World Cup and Olympics, Hernandez chose to wear the No.14 jersey as well, one his dad used to sport in his playing days. They both scored their first World Cup goals against French goalkeepers.
A Special Liking for Chelsea
If Javier Hernandez is on song, usually it’s a bad day for the opposition. Chelsea has been on the receiving end of many such onslaughts as Chicharito has taken a liking to the Blues. He has scored eight goals against the Stamford Bridge outfit, including a debut strike against them in his first-ever game for Manchester United.