Form r Cruz Azul defender Norberto Angeles has died of a heart attack at the age of 43. The defender was part of the 2001 Cruz Azul team that went to the final of the 2001 Libertadores Cup, the first Mexican team to do so, where they lost to Boca Juniors on penalty kicks. Angeles went through the Cruz Azul youth system and remained with the team until 2003. Ex-player Melvin Brown was the first to announce the news while Cruz Azul later did the same on the day of his departure, August 17th, 2020.
Norberto Angeles was born in San Juan Tepa, Hidalgo on June 6th, 1977. He went through the Cruz Azul Hidalgo youth system which is located in Jasso, Hidalgo, where Cruz Azul is originally from. Angeles made Cruz Azul Hidalgo in 1997, which was in Primera A (the equivalent of the second division of Mexico). Angeles started reinforcing the senior team, and in 2000 he officially moved to Cruz Azul. With Cruz Azul he had his best moments in Liga MX, with his career high being his participation in the run to the Copa Libertadores. Cruz Azul made it to the finals after getting by Cerro Porteño in the Round of 16, River Plate in the Quarterfinals and Rosario Central in the Semis. In the final, they lost the first leg at home against Boca Juniors but went back and won the return leg in Buenos Aires. Since both games ended 1-0, they went to extra time and in the penalty shootout, they eventually lost out. Angeles continued in Cruz Azul but eventually lost out in playing time and in 2003, he moved to Queretaro. Unfortunately for Angeles, Queretaro and Irapuato were contracted a year later in a reduction by Liga MX to 16 teams, leaving him without a club. Angeles moved to Lobos BUAP in Primera A but this signaled the end of his career in first division. After a year in Lobos BUAP, he moved to Gallos de Caliente, the precursor to Xolos, in Primera A before ending his career.
Norberto Angeles didn’t have a long career, but he made his mark in the team and is part of the historic run in Libertadores. It’s a real shame that somebody so young suffered such a fate. May he rest in peace.