Tournament of the Six Teams
The year 1951 was crucial in the professional development of Club Deportivo Palestino. Before participating in the professional tournament, the Central Football Association of Chile presented to Palestino a tough soccer test to justify the institution’s application to the Chilean professional leagues: a mini tournament called ‘Tournament of the Six Teams’, which was held each year in La Cisterna district. In the 1951 version it was useful as a prelude to demonstrate that the project as a ‘Professional Palestino’ was a serious one.
In that tournament, it participated 3 professional teams: Audax Italiano, Iberia and Magallanes (a powerful teams in those years) and 3 amateur ones: Olimpico of La Cisterna, Manuel Plaza and Club Deportivo Palestino. The first game was played against Iberia, where they had to overcome the first obstacle, the teams failed to gather the 11 players, therefore they appeared with 9 men and even so managed to defeat Iberia by 3 to 2. Later, Club Deportivo Palestino won the tournament, making it clear that his interest in being a professional was serious.
Entry of the Palestinian Sports Club to professionalism
After various efforts, in 1952, the Central Football Association of Chile accepted Club Deportivo Palestino to participate in the incipient and experimental Chilean Second Division.
In that tournament, with an outstanding campaign, it defined the championship against Rangers in Rancagua (a neutral court), being Club Deportivo Palestino as champion and with it getting the promotion to the First Division of Chile.
Debut of Club Deportivo Palestino in First Division
In 1953, based on a millionaire budget and a highly committed leaders, with a meritorious campaign the team finishes in 2nd place, behind of Colo-Colo.
This year also decided to change the team’s shirt, which until that time had been half vertical red and half vertical white. And began to use permanently the colors white, red and green in his shirt, and black in his pants.
Club Deportivo Palestino champion in 1955
Only three years after his professional debut, in 1955 the team won its first national title, with that legendary team led by Roberto Coll, Rodolfo Almeyda, Osvaldo Pérez, José Fernández, Guillermo Diaz, José Donoso, among others. It was a non-small achievement considering the team was the champion 9 points from the 2nd position team (when the winner won 2 points and not 3 as is the current rules).
Club Deportivo Palestino remained a powerful team in the following major league tournaments, reaching positions among the top 5 in the years 1957 (3rd), 1958 (4th) and 1960 (5th).
In 1960, the coach Alejandro ‘Conejo’ Scopelli brought the striker Juan Antonio Falcon from Estudiantes de la Plata from Argentina. It was a curious discovery, because it happens that the ‘flaco’ (skinny guy) had never been a goal scorer by definition and in Club Deportivo Palestino it was one of them. He was master to finish the counterattack, he became scorer of the tournament that year with 21 goals.