Chile’s Jean Beausejour tackles the Argentine great, Lionel Messi, (R) during the Copa America Centenario final in East Rutherford, New Jersey, United States, on June 26, 2016. (Photo credit: ALFREDO ESTRELLA/AFP/Getty Images)
By NAN Sports Writer
News Americas, East Rutherford, NJ, Mon. June 27, 2016: Chile’s hard fought victory for a second straight year in a row at the Copa America 2016 finals was last night also made possible by a player who undoubtedly has Haitian blood flowing through his veins.
He stands out in the team for his height and the fact that he is but one of the only black soccer players on the South American team. Last night, as Chile fought through 120 scoreless minutes in an extremely physical match to fight off losing to Argentina at the Copa America 2016 finals at the Metlife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ, he stepped up and helped deliver with the fourth spot penalty kick to send his team jumping for joy again with a 4–2 win on penalties.
Jean André Emanuel Beausejour – who consistently tackled the great Argentine Lionel Messi in the Copa finals – was actually born in 1984 to a Haitian father and a Chilean-Mapuche mother in Santiago, Chile. His nickname is Palmatoria or Francés. His father was thought to have died last January, when the earthquake struck Haiti. However, the report proved to be untrue.
Beausejour made his debut for the Chilean national team in 2004 and had made 73 appearances and scored 6 goals. He was also part of the winning squad last year.
In June 2014, he was also part of the 23-man roster to the FIFA World Cup at Brazil. On June 13, 2014, during Chile’s first group B match and became the first ever Chilean to score in two different World Cup finals after netting his side’s last goal in the 3–1 victory over Australia after a shot from outside the box that beat keeper Matthew Ryan.
Beausejour was raised in Estación Central commune and also plays for Colo-Colo in the Primera División de Chile. He has also played in Chile, Switzerland, Brazil, Belgium, Mexico and England, winning the League Cup with Birmingham City and the FA Cup with Wigan Athletic.