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Friday, 29 August 2014
BLACK SOCIAL HISTORY : AFRO-MOROCCAN " LARBI BENBAREK " ALSO KNOWN AS THE BLACK PEARL , WAS A MOROCCAN FOOTBALL PLAYER RECOGNIZED AS THE FIRST SUCCESSFUL AFRICAN PLAYER IN EUROPE , HE PLAYED IN THE FRENCH LEAGUE AND PLAYED FOR FRANCE : GOES INTO THE " HALL OF BLACK HEROES "
BLACK SOCIAL HISTORY Larbi Benbarek or Larbi Ben Mbarek (Arabic: لعربي بن مبارك – also known as the Black Pearl; born 16 June 1914 – died 16 September 1992) was a Moroccan football player recognized as the first successful African player in Europe. He was the first player to bear the nickname of Black Pearl. Larbi rose to fame in the French league and played for France.
Of Senegalese ancestry, Benbarek was born and raised in the protectorate of French Morocco. The first African star and the first to bear the nickname of "Black Pearl", Ben Barek blazed a trail to the European, and particularly French and Spanish, leagues. He arrived in Marseille, France at the age of 20, and became an instant favourite with the fans for his skills and technical abilities. Pele took the name of the "Black Pearl" after he made a famous statement about Larbi: "If I am the King of Football, then Larbi Ben Barek is the God of it".
He is largely remembered as the first successful black footballer in Europe.
His career was interrupted by the onset of World War II but he was soon back to his best with Stade Français FC and then in Spain, with Atlético Madrid, where he truly blossomed and where his international fame spread. His nickname with the fans in Spain was "The Foot of God". With the help of Benbarek, Atlético won La Liga in 1950 and 1951. He returned to Marseille in 1953. In 1955, he joined USM Bel-Abbès, where he ended his playing career.
One of the finest players ever to represent France, he made 19 appearances for the French national team between 1938 and 1954. But his comeback in 1954 against Germany in Hanover was curtailed by an injury after half an hour and proved to be the end of his career.