Latin America & Caribbean

Colombia 'scorpion kick' keeper Higuita runs for mayor

Rene "El Loco" Higuita
Image caption Rene Higuita invented the "scorpion kick"

The maverick former goalkeeper of Colombia, Rene "El Loco" Higuita, has announced plans to stand for political office.

As a player he was perhaps best known for inventing the "scorpion kick" he used to make a save against England at Wembley in 1995.

Higuita says he intends to run for mayor of a municipality near Medellin.

In the 1990s Higuita was one of football's most colourful characters and played in the 1990 World Cup.

But Higuita missed out on a place in the 1994 team when he was sent to jail for acting as an intermediary in a kidnapping case.

Sweeper

He was much loved in Colombia for his eccentric and often erratic style.

As well as his trademark "scorpion", he was also renowned for dribbling the ball into the outfield like a sweeper.

But now, after 24 years as a player and some 14 months after he hung up his gloves, Rene Higuita says he hopes to help his local community.

He intends to stand as an independent candidate for mayor in the Guarne municipality in the department of Antioquia.

"You only need around 4,500 votes to become mayor," he told the Colombian daily El Tiempo, "but I hope to get 10,000!"

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