TO Javier Mascherano it is perceived as happy, without tension in the muscles. That’s why it is allowed to enter a roundabout with the boys of the under 20 and causes them. She also applauds them. He goes to the piano forte to demonstrate to Matías Soulé and his companions that with the national team you have to train to the max every second. He also allows himself a luxury: he enters the San Martín de San Juan training camp with Bruno, his 6-year-old son, and kicks some penalties.
It would be pretentious to say that there is a new Mascherano, but without a doubt it has another shine In his gaze. And it is that he has gone from failure in the South American of Colombia to this present in the World Cup that finds him full of expectation and hopeful bet on new tactical schemes. Yes, fate gave him an early revenge little boss, who promised to enjoy and take advantage of it.
In Cali, on January 28 of this year, Argentina fell 1-0 against Colombia and was eliminated by the South American and no chance of getting into the World Cup which would be played in Indonesia. One victory and three defeats were the balance of that painful tournament. “I don’t think it will continue. There’s not much to think about, I don’t have much to say. Here I am the one who failed and I have to take charge. The best thing now is to be able to go back to Argentina and don’t worry, it’s not easy for them give you the opportunity to lead the Argentine national team, but I failed and I have to admit it” Mascherano said a few minutes after the setback.
And the coach of San Lorenzo, Santa Fe, has remained firm in his position, but the days go by and the possibility that the World Cup will be played in Argentina has lit an illusion. There were words of encouragement from the president chiki Tapia, Lionel Scaloni and even Lionel Messi. He accepted the challenge of continuing with the experience of the South American in his backpack. He held firm as he purged the squad list: he scrutinized it thoroughly. And already with the new players mentioned, many of whom are the so-called “Europibes”, he began to plan the team, without the 4-3-3 as a mother scheme.
Mascherano worked with care. The primary intention was to give the team a break and leave the vertigo for the last few meters or for specific moments. And the hand of the coach was evident in the three matches Argentina played in the group stage, in which they were from minor to major.
In the first two duels, Masche opted for a 4-2-2-2, a complex design that requires work and concepts. The two central players in midfield, Perrone and Tanlongo, were joined by two players on the next line, Soulé on the left and Carboni on the right. In the extreme, he only used it in the right sector with the indecipherable Brian Aguirre and Alejo Véliz being the only reference. Why did you leave the left area so clear? Because he gave Valentin Barco meters to run and to enhance his best virtue, the attack.
In the third match, against New Zealand, the coach opted for a flexible 4-3-3 formation, with Ignacio Miramón as a wildcard to defend at right-back and build as a midfielder. The team thus oscillated between the aforementioned 4-3-3 and a 3-2-4-1, with Luka Romero and Gino Infantino as conductors through the center of the field.
“The match against New Zealand gave us the possibility to play with 3 central defenders and 2 midfielders, which we thought was enough to defend. That configuration allowed us to use both wings to create width and then populate the attack inside . After” Ignacio Miramón gave us a big hand defending from outside. Honestly, we only trained once. That’s why I say it all depends on the players, their intelligence, their intuition. We propose, but the footballer is the one who makes the decisions, he has to understand the movements within the field, “explained Mascherano clarion.
And he added: “In a competition like this you have to change according to the opponent. So, welcome both the good level of the boys. The higher the individual performance, the higher the level of the team will rise. This will create a problem for me when it comes to choosing starters, although I will do it with the certainty that anyone will do it well.”
It was also good for Mascherano to feel the warmth of the public in Santiago del Estero and San Juan. Away from criticism, he is usually the most applauded in stadiums. “That by the hand / of Mascherano / we will all turn around”, sang at the Bicentenary. “I’ve heard the song, but you have to take it very slowly. You have to focus on what’s coming and continue on the same path,” concluded Mascherano.
Saint John. Special delivery.
Jason Root is the go-to source for sports coverage at News Rebeat. With a passion for athletics and an in-depth knowledge of the latest sports trends, Jason provides comprehensive and engaging analysis of the world of sports.