Miguel Jones, an eternal promise in red and white

That day a match was announced: a university team against Deusto, a team in which Yanko Daucik, son of Ferdinand Daucik, Athletic coach at the time, played. Michael Jones I was studying Economics at the University of Deusto –His father, Don Wilwardo Jones, a native of Equatorial Guinea, had settled with his family in Bilbao in 1944 when Miguel, the future footballer, was five years old, and he always wanted to give his children a capital education…–, where He stood out in sports for his athletic condition. Ferdinand went to see his son’s match but was fascinated by Jones’ display, author of four goals in the 6-4 with which his team beat his son’s team. From that very moment he had a purpose: to take Miguel Jones to Athletic to do some tests.

Those were other times, very different from today, where the Williams brothers reign in Athletic. Although Miguel lived in Bilbao from his earliest childhood, when he was five years old, Athletic was blunt in its conditions: only those who were born in the Basque Country could play. There was then a stir, given that critical voices were raised in the face of Daucik’s efforts and Athletic’s refusal. It was said then, beyond these borders, that it was a racist club.

Nothing is further from reality. Jones himself described as “cretins” those who thought and still think that there was a racist substratum in his dismissal, when the unwritten rule to play in Athletic then handled other conditions. “In 1956 I played a friendly match with Athletic through Daucik and against Indautxu (he was 18 years old and even scored a goal but the chronicles of the time underline that he lacked rhythm…). Daucik had said: This may be the new Ben Bareck. He appealed to my father, but my father just wanted me to finish my studies. Despite everything, I spent a month training with Carmelo, Mauri, Maguregi, Markaida, Artetxe, Uribe… But that stage was very different from the current one. Athletic players did not have to be from the Basque Country. They had to be Vizcainos. What happens is that many people do not know the history of Athletic and Bilbao”.

Let’s go back to the grass. Jones began playing for Barakaldo and Indautxu. When Daucik signed for Atlético de Madrid, his faith in the Basque-Guinean footballer had not wavered. He requested the signing of him. Atlético paid 400,000 pesetas for the transfer. Despite the fact that Daucik, his defender, fell early (on the sixth day …) the Cup gave him an opportunity and Jones took advantage of it. He began to play and at the age of 23 he was even pre-selected for the World Cup in Chile.

In the 63-64 season an injury complicated his life. He arrived at a bad time, because little by little they were arriving at Atlético Cardona, Luis Aragonés, Ufarte, Gárate… he was left as a substitute. ANDn 1967-68 he decided to go to Osasuna, where he closed his career at the age of 29.

Journalist Alfredo Relaño recalls that Guinea had achieved independence in 1966, with Don Wilwardo as one of the drafters of the Autonomy Law and a participant in the Constitutional Conference. The country soon fell into the hands of a psychopath named Macías Ngueme, who defined himself as a “Hitler Marxist”, and murdered and robbed at close range. The Joneses lost almost everything.

Linked to Indautxu as manager for fifteen years, nor did he lose the link with his origins, the family he still had in Guinea. Jones bragged about his status as a Bilbao native: “A Bilbao native is born wherever he wants and I wanted to be born in Fernando Poo. I also spent the summer in Pedernales and studied economics at Deusto”, he said. In 2020 the coronavirus took it away.

Miguel Jones, an eternal promise in red and white