In its well-known section Debunking Myths, Tony Serpa analyzed, delved into the most hidden data and made, with his characteristic imprint, a review of Javier Mascherano’s career, who last Sunday hung up the boots in front of Argentinos.
In 2003, Marcelo Bielsa set his eyes on the youth from River Plate and called him up, even without having made his club debut, to represent the Argentine National Team. As there are people who turn everything they touch into gold, Loco turned it to silver.
Throughout his long career, Masche was nicknamed the Little boss. In diminutive, because never enough to be the Boss. The numbers mark that he retired with 21 titles in his showcase. Something that for any player is an exorbitant figure.
However, not everything is what it seems. In River he conquered a local tournament in 72 games, while Walter Silvani has four and Enrique Beto Bologna seven in only ten games.. Further, He was close to lifting the South American Cup against the powerful Cienciano but settled for the runner-up.
Later it went to Corinthians. They hung him the medal of a Brasileirao but, of the year that he was, he spent seven months recovering from a fracture while Carlos Tevez became an idol. And if that was not enough, in practice he almost came to blows with a partner.
With their Argentine compatriot they were transferred to West Ham. While the Apache saved the English from relegation, Mascherano wanted to leave because the technicians did not take him into consideration. With only seven appearances in the Hammers moved to Liverpool, a cup team par excellence that with him on the court had to settle for just a lost Champions League final.
In 2010, Lionel Messi took him to Barcelona to guide his story. In that calendar he raised everything. Until the Orejona. But it is worth clarifying that even Maxi López won it with the blaugrana. Pep Guardiola He sent him to the central rear because he did not give him the physique or the technique to take charge of the midfield.
And in his match N ° 319 he scored his first and only goal in the culé. His teammates gave Osasuna a penalty in a 7-1. In 2015, his voice of command paid off and he was named fourth captain.
However, what matters is always the Albiceleste. He obtained four runners-up in America and one in the world. At least, celebrated two semi-professional Olympic golds in 2004 and 2008 by beating Paraguay and Nigeria in the decisive matches. He was captain in 2008 and 2010, until the flea He grabbed the tape and stood in the shadows.
In 17 years of career he scored only eight goals. One every two years and a month. He walked through China without success and said goodbye in Estudiantes with a “Sorry for so little”. To close his story, on Tuesday against Peru, Messi became with 85 victories the most winning player of the Argentine National Team. Mascherano, at 84, had to settle for the place that sheltered him throughout his life: second place.