When a professional player is absent from his team's training, he may invoke many medical, social or even family matters to escape the financial and technical penalties that can be imposed on him, but the Argentine Guillermo Marino's justification exceeded expectations.
Gustavo Lorenzetti, a former colleague of Marino, recounts that the latter justified his absence from a training session by kidnapping him by aliens.
Marino, 39, played his entire career in South America, and in 2010 moved to the Universidad team in Chile, who was then coached by Argentine Jorge Sampaoli (2010-2013).
"Guillermo told his colleagues, after arriving late for a training session, that he was kidnapped by aliens, and he began with a detailed explanation of what happened with him and what he felt during this experiment," Lorenzetti said.
"He explained to us how they pulled his soul from him, separated the journey with them and how they were looking for him," Guillermo was quoted as saying.
"I believe in the presence of aliens," Marino said, "the explanation given by Marino convinced us all of what he said."
Lorenzetti did not confirm whether Guillermo had said these words to Sampole to justify his absence from the training session, and whether Sampole was convinced of that justification.
"There are former players who said they were kidnapped by aliens and returned after two or three days, but Guillermo is not of this type. He is a good and sane person and everyone knows him."
It is reported that Guillermo played with Newell's Old Boys and Boca Juniors in Argentina, and retired from the game in 2015.
Argentine soccer legend Diego Maradona had claimed that "strange creatures" from space had kidnapped him. And he added in a newspaper interview last year, "One day I was drunk and went home for three days. I was taken by aliens, and I can't tell you more than that."