"¿Sabés? When I was a kid, I always dreamt of making it big playing football, and when I did make it, I then realized my passion was in a juzgado rather than in the pitch, life's weird as hell ain't it?" - Sandro Mèndez, reflecting about his life
Sandro Pacheco Mèndez (July 19th, 1979 - ?) is a retired Stanierian-Argentinian association football player and currently lawyer which notorious for earning 25 golden boots and four Balon d'Or, and recognized by his skills at dribbling and taking advantage of goal scoring opportunities, and giving all that away in whim to start all over in a completely different kind of career.
Early life and youth career
Sandro was born to a small middle-class family of Italian-Mexican descent in Nuova San Francisco, PortoSpagna. Since he was a little boy he was always involved on incidents regarding street football, be it at school, the street where he lived in or anywhere he went and had a ball available to him; a rumor says he's broken so many windows that it must be a three-number figure. Then one day, when he was eight-years-old, tired of paying for all windows he usually broke playing football, his parents enrolled him into the youth academy of Spagna Football Club in Porto Spagnolo in the hopes that he could fine-tune his aim and to see if they could cash in on Sandro's eagerness to play football, after a batch of training sessions, he was assigned as a defender substitute for upcoming little league games, thing that he loved since the start.
In the beginning, as a defender, Sandro wasn't pretty efficient and he usually failed at sliding tackles, either missing or hitting the player and earning a yellow or (In the worst of the cases) red card, but he was pretty efficient at standing tackles, being the nightmare of strikers that had lesser skill and tried to get past him, as an estimate, he ruined more than 160 goal opportunities for the opposite teams during his time with Spagna FC, quite impressive for a ten-year-old.
Following a six-year run with Spagna FC, scouts from the Argentine football club Boca Juniors started to lay an eye on Sandro, seeing a completely wasted potential as an attacking midfielder whilst he was a defender, people from Boca approached Sandro's parents and made them an offer that included residence in Argentina, work for them and education ensured for Sandro, all at the cost of just letting him play football. They just couldn't say no to that kind of offer, so they moved to Argentina in order to fulfill the requisites of the deal. He was only thirteen-years-old at the time.
Following that, he constantly trained at Boca Juniors' Reserve Academy, where he was taught the basics of attacking, different kinds of dribbling and ways of fooling defenders and goalkeepers, slowly perfecting his way of play to a point that the coach decided that he couldn't be just an attacking midfielder, he had to be a striker.
Afterwards, the coaches perfected his aim and shots, helping him to be able to get an absurdly high conversion rate of shots-to-goals for his age, and then they decided to give him a test run, they placed him as a substitute on national youth league of Argentina, scoring his first hat-trick at the last minutes of his very first game, he was awarded a place in the starting eleven two games after.
During his time in the youth branch of Boca, the team saw an unstoppable streak of victories until they played a game with San Lorenzo in 1996 which ended on a 4-4 draw, but afterwards more victories came every time that Sandro played which started a saying between Boca Fans: "Si Sandro está con Boca y no gana, el viene y la empata" (If Sandro's with Boca and it isn't winning, he comes and makes it a tie).
Beginning of his success, first time as senior with Boca Juniors
Shortly after his 18th birthday, his father and manager told him that he got word that Sandro would be promoted to the senior branch of Boca Juniors and that his debut would be in a friendly match against Atlético Banfield, which later ended in a resounding 4-1 defeat with a hat-trick and an assist from Sandro.
Following that, his debut in the Argentine 'Primera División' was made in a match against Racing Club in the early stages of the 98-99 'Apertura', where he was placed as a substitute that landed on the pitch during the final stages of the second half of an awfully even 2-2 match, at minute 67 he scored a goal that made the match uneven, followed by another goal in the minute 75 and an assist on minute 83, leaving the match with a score of 5-2.
Although initially placed as a substitute on the majority of the matches, following several hat-tricks every time he entered the pitch made the manager place him on future starting elevens, as an attempt to ensure superiority in the field, and that really worked, considering that during Sandro's time at Boca the team was nigh unstoppable on its winning streaks, winning all major Argentine tournaments and Latin American club cups until Sandro's leave in 2005.
But hilariously enough, he never got to play the infamous 'Superclásico' against River Plate, saying that the manager never let him play against River because "He didn't want River Plate crying for months and then bombing me with transfer requests".
Transfer to Saint-Étienne
After two weeks of rumors regarding his leave that spawned after the end of the 2003 'Clausura'. Méndez announced that the 2004-2005 season would be his last with Boca Juniors, his main reasons for the departure at the time were strained relationships with his teammates and a necessity to succeed further in the world of association football. His last match with Boca Juniors was on the group stage of the 2005's Copa Libertadores against Venezuela's Zulia F.C. Which ended on a 7-0 defeat for Zulia.
Afterward, Sandro confirmed and signed a four-year contract with the French football club Saint-Étienne, in order to go back to Europe and make it big on one of the famous European leagues, this time the French Ligue 1.
Later on, Sandro was once again on the public spotlight after signing with Saint-Étienne. Mèndez didn't get immediately into the field after signing due to being required to train for at least three months in order to get used to the tactics Saint-Étienne used, so, after being cleared by Saint-Étienne's training staff in June 2005, Méndez was ready to hit the pitch in a match against RC Lens where after hitting the pitch on the 69th minute as a substitute in an already won 2-1 match, Sandro sealed the deal by scoring three goals in quick succession (One in the 71st minute, another in the 73rd and a final one in the 75th), leaving the game 5-1. Also scoring his first hat-trick in an European league, and showing to everyone that no matter the place, he could still make it big.
Change of heart, from footballer to lawyer, and appointment as Attorney General of Stanier
Shortly after finishing his contract with Saint-Étienne, Sandro decided to not renovate it in order to pursue a new chapter in life, away from the glamour from the world of football and instead aiming to get the higher education he shooed away before in exchange for kicking a ball for a living. He chose law school over all available choices because he developed a liking towards (Insert bland, non-copyrighted replacement for Phoenix Wright) games, added to the rather short duration of the career in the Lawyer's School of Fidanzata (Three years).
After finishing his studies and graduating in 2012. Sandro started as a non-litigant lawyer, with a rather simple job in the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Interior, and Justice as a recommended lawyer for people who desired to get their documents certified, however, everything changed when the Military Government ended in 2014, and was assigned as a prosecutor in a high-profile trial where a Colonel was being indicted for treason. Subsequently Sandro managed to turn the odds in favor of the prosecution despite the initial lack of evidence, and the Colonel was sentenced to life-in-prison in less than a month of deliberations, and that would be just the beginning.
2014 would prove to be a turbulent year further down the road, with several people being tried for tax evasion, assassination, and terrorist plots along the road. Sandro was always assigned to the prosecution bench, managing to get good results with his team, and by his sixth tax evasion case he was already a Chief Prosecutor. He managed to get a total of 57 guilty verdicts for 64 disputed cases, not bad for a rather rookie lawyer.
2015 would be a decisive year for Sandro, as he started to dig up dirt on Mayors and Protectors of PortoSpagna, on an investigation sanctioned by the commissioner of the province. Finding outrageous things by the truckload, and gradually exposing rather noticeable schemes of diversion of public funds for several public projects in the entity, including a fair few which were part of the national roadway plan which the presidency had entrusted Protectorships to carry with bumps in funding. His investigation would be one of the most noisy corruption scandals of the new democratic era, ending up with the destitution and sentencing of ten Mayors and the resign from the Province's Protector, who despite being found innocent, had their reputation stained for the rest of their political careers. This investigation would pique the interest of The Commission, who would commend Sandro on his efforts to fight corruption in the Stanierian government, and months later, they would outright summon him to become the next Attorney General of the nation. Something he didn't expect himself by a long stretch.
Prominent acts as Attorney General and Minister of Interior and Justice
The tenure of Mr. Mèndez has been focused on easing the tediousness of paperwork for the citizens of the nation by making the vast majority of papers being able to be requested via internet. Such as birth, marriage, death, and divorce certificates, as well certifications of lack of criminal records, travel permits for minors, etc. And in the case of papers which require a signature from the citizen who requested them, appointments can also be scheduled online. However, due to the sheer number of the population of Stanier, as well as its rather understaffed bureaucracy, most of these online options have absurdingly low limits of requests per day (e.g: The page of certifications of lack of criminal records only takes a maximum of 17,000 requests per day, and Stanier has about 20,000,000 people living on it).
As the Attorney General however, things become rather controversial, with Mr. Mèndez reversing several would-be laws which would either limit the power of the Judicial branch, or conflict with his vision for the nation such as:
Proposizione #1289: This law would have introduced broad devolution for the Judicial system, also limiting (If not outright eliminating) the power of the Attorney General to meddle or take the reins of any trial. Mr. Mèndez declared it unconstitutional because, according to his interpretation, the Stanierian constitution establishes that the Judiciary must be mostly centralized.
Proposizione #1156: This law would've made the Polizia Stradale able to decide whether to comply or not with requests from the Attorney General's Office. Since it would separate the Polizia Stradale from the Judicial branch. Also declared unconstitutional, since the Polizia Stradale was established originally as the executioner of the Office of The Attorney General.
Ordine esecutiva #128: This presidential decree would've made the dress code for Governmental employees more strict, forcing 'gender-appropriate' clothing across all levels of the Government. It was annulled because it interfered with the freedoms of all Government employees to dress as they desire.
Mèndez is known for having a progressive way of thinking, thinking that the state shouldn't butt in most aspects of the citizens' life such as who or how many people they marry (Which implies a support for polygamy and same-sex marriage), what they wear (Implies a tolerance for cross-dressing and a support for an abolition of governmental dress codes), what they believe on or even if they believe in something at all (Implies a tolerance for many religious communities and atheism), or what gender they are attracted to (Implies a support for LGBT communities). Economically he thinks that the economy should have little to no regulation from the state, whilst retaining taxation for administration and funding in case of disaster and to guarantee the well-being of the people who are in need. On the social area, his main focus is to ensure that the citizens of Stanier live on a tolerant society, whilst also looking for the perfect balance between free speech and Government meddling to either incentivise or force tolerance, but progress is rather slow as he is conflicted at times. As shown in lawsuits such as Jonas Matthews vs. Fermetali (In which a hardware store refused to serve a foreign gay couple according to the beliefs of the owners of the store, in the end, he took the reins of the trial and ruled in favor of Mr. Matthews).
Sandro is a person with a pretty much entrepreneurial state of mind, always wondering how to succeed further professionally and setting goals to achieve. Mèndez is also identifiable because of the stark contrast that he suffers when comparing his political persona with the actual Sandro as the person he usually is at work is often described as a cranky, stern and overly professional man, whereas the person you would encounter when say, bumping on the street is a humble, sociable, humorous, and very friendly fellow who wouldn't mind cracking a cold one should the circumstances allow it; it's safe to say that this persona is the real him, as he can't contain himself but to be that person when encountering a youngster, as proven many times when any elementary school decides to do a trip to The Office of The Attorney General.
Style of play
Sandro is known for a multi-purpose style of play, knowing what to do at the moment and shifting his tactics to adapt to the situation at hand, although he is able to defend and hold his position, Méndez is eagerly interested on the offensive side, always following the ball regardless of where it is in order to execute a plan that allows his team to walk away with an upper hand over the opponent.
Sandro's personal life doesn't have many highlights besides his constant contact with the community with activities such as playing soccer with kids of the neighborhood or people who decide to do such activity nearby The Attorney's Office (even when wearing suits), assisting to charity and community events, and the occasional getaway to the cinema, dinner, or bar. It is noted that his humility has led him to not care about many things regarding his appearance, as proven by the fact that in his first days as a lawyer he always assisted to the trials wearing a Boca Juniors kit stripped of all sponsor logos.
His net worth has been calculated to be around the 20 million euro mark, however, he doesn't like to show off his riches, as his personal residence is a small Mar de la Plata style house in his hometown of Nuova San Francisco, he does not wear any sort of expensive watches or clothing (All of his clothes are long sleeved we must add), and his daily driver (besides the official car of the Attorney General) Is a 20-year-old Vulcar Warrener.
As for the sentimental side of things, Sandro is single and does not actively search for a significant other and is very passive about such matters of life ever since a failed relationship about three years ago. On a side note, Sandro holds dual Stanierian-Argentinian nationality, due to his time living in Argentina and his heritage (His mother was an Argentinian national).
Mèndez always wears an old Boca Juniors kit under his clothes (as stupid as it might sound, and even during scorching hot days) that he considers to be his 'Lucky kit', which explains his preference for long sleeved clothing.
He is particularly attached to the music of Colombian singer Carlos Vives, with his office having a radio which exclusively plays his songs at a reasonable volume.
According to a few insiders, the failed relationship that has led him to being basically a bachelor was with Akira Shinoda, whom he broke up with due to sadistic tendencies, a blackmailing habit, and overall cruelty. Shinoda denies the accusations emphatically, whilst also looking slightly dreamy when Mèndez is named.