The starting line-up of Argentina against England at Wembley on 25 June 1991. The only match played by Martellotto.
Calchín is a city in the Río Secondo department which does not reach 3000 inhabitants. The latest census will tell you exactly. But who in these days of 2022 is super known for the young star of River, Julián Alvarez, who last week scored six goals against Alianza Lima. D.And here he is also one of only six players to have visited the number 10 jersey of the Argentine national team at Wembleyscenario in which Argentina will play this Wednesday against Italy and in which Lionel Messi will use the
An illustrious acquaintance in his homeland, where he returned to settle several years ago and directed until before the pandemic, Germán Ricardo Martellotto (59) is an unforgettable player of the 80s and 90s: Belgrano, Deportivo Español and Rosario Central in Argentina; Deportivo Cali, Monterrey, America and Pachuca abroad. Sure, few remember that he used 10 in his only match in the selected.
Germán Martelotto, with the Deportivo Español shirt.
“I was playing in Mexico and I received a call from Alfio Basile,” he tells Clarín via WhatsApp while watching the match between Social Brinkmann and Sportivo Suardi, where Agustín, the eldest of his three children, plays for the San Francesco Regional Football League. . And underlines: “I was the first Argentine player in Mexico to be called up for the national team“.
Martellotto was a midfielder attacking midfielder, with a slow and confident pace, skilled and creative. Alfio Basile was rehearsing players to assemble the team for the 1991 Copa América and called him up in May 1991, for a game in the United States and participation in the Stanley Rous Cup in England. The friendly with the Yankees arrived at the stadium after half an hour, just as Darío Franco scored the winning goal. Then he was a substitute in Manchester against the Soviet Union.
Clarín highlighted the arrival of Germán Martellotto in the friendly against the United States at the exact moment when Darío Franco scored the winning goal.
“I was injured in the last game I played in Monterrey. He was on the mend. El Coco asked me how I felt, that I was going to start against England, and asked me to play like he did in my club. Without much training, I tried to collaborate and do what I could, but I didn’t live up to expectations. After I was out of love with the Copa América”, He acknowledges three decades later. Even so, after the match she chatted with Horacio Pagani, Clarín’s special envoy, and commented: “This team has a future and I would like to participate.”
After the match with England, Clarín highlighted the phrase of Germán Martellotto, on his debut and farewell to the national team.
He spent 60 minutes on the pitch and was replaced by Antonio Mohamed. Argentina, who were losing 2-0, managed to equalize. Martellotto acknowledges: “It was too important an award for my career, an unforgettable experience. It was one thing to see the national team from the outside and quite another to participate and become aware of the admiration that Argentina arouses around the world. It was a privilege to use 10. An incredible emotional charge ”, he remarks.
Germán Martelotto with the 10th of the national team and at Wembley, headed against the mark of David Platt.
It was the only match he played for the national team. The shirt was given to his father at the time, who passed away five months ago. He now he has it and proudly guards it. Diego Maradona had already used it, but at that moment he hadn’t taken it into account. “At the time I didn’t know what Diego’s 10 meant. Over time I realized the size of the shirt I was wearing, of all that the 10 of the national team represent. In the match, my intention was to perform in the best possible way “, explains with naturalness and pride the man in charge of the photo taken with Diego with the Belgrano de Córdoba shirt, on 10 July 1986, just 11 days from the world title in Mexico.
Germán Martellotto with Diego Maradona, who dressed Belgrano’s 10, in a friendly match played on 10 July 1986.
Although neither before nor after he was called up again in the national team, Martellotto has no grudges and admits: “Not at all. I once heard a comment from Basile, who hadn’t given me another chance. But due to my age at the time (28) and the demand that was there, he gave me the chance and I didn’t take it. There are players who are for teams, some for specific clubs and others for the national team. My performance was good, but at that level there were others of a higher level. This is what time has shown. Then he called Leo Rodríguez and ended up being the figure of the Copa América. But I repeat, for me it was a privilege and an unforgettable experience ”.
Finally he listens to the names of Angel Labruna, Antonio Rattín, Carlos Squeo, Diego, Ariel Ortega, everyone who used 10 like him at Wembley, now Lionel Messi, and laughs: “It’s just a statistic. I feel like it was a godsend, because my career hasn’t been about wearing that shirt more than once, due to circumstances we all know. And I’m happy to have lived. “