The diminutive Chilean experienced a nightmare flight from Santiago de Chile, so it was a very tired Pardo who went through club doctor Robbart van Linschoten’s medical. ‘The flight is an extremely long one to start with, but I also had a five-hour wait at the airport for a connecting flight. I hope the doctor keeps that in mind,’ said a concerned Pardo.
All said and done though, there was little need for concern, because the tests made it very clear that there’s nothing wrong with Sebastián’s condition. Or his ambition, by the sound of things. 'I have an idea that I’ve grown too big for Chilean football. Well, that isn’t so difficult because the standard in Chile has slumped the past few years. But in Rotterdam I want to show that I’m a good player and in time I hope to become as important for Feyenoord as I was for Universidad de Chile.'
For Pardo, the Kuip is not an unknown quantity. The international has already played in the stadium, as part of the Chilean national team that flew into Holland to take on Turkey in a friendly last season. Pardo has also been picking fellow countryman Mauricio Aros’s brains about his new club. 'I spent a day with him going through all the pictures of Feyenoord he has on video and CD. I’ve seen all the European Cup games and it impressed me. Mauricio also explained that it’s quite simply a good club with friendly people and that I would be well received here. Well, that’s been right up to now.'
Sebastián Pardo returns to his homeland ten days from now to sort out the necessary red tape before definitely settling in the Netherlands. In the meantime Pardo hopes to make a deep impression on the coaching staff, although he remains realistic about the possibility of a sojourn in Kralingen. ‘A spell at Excelsior may not be a bad thing. I would be playing at the highest level and I would probably play more often that I would in the Kuip. It would be great for my acclimatisation, but it would be obviously ideal if I were to start at Feyenoord from day one. I’ll do my best to realise that.'