Football is Messi’s favorite toy

by:Ennas      2021-12-10

[Italy] Luca Caioli Translated by Wang Tianai-Dialogue with 'Pancho' Francisco Ferraro's wisdom, peace and quiet voice on the coach's bench, the world of football Everyone calls him 'Pancho'. He has an enviable resume and has coached national teams of different age groups and many clubs in South America and Europe (including Spain's Valladolid team, who resigned in April 2001). Despite the rich experience, the best memory remains in those days at the end of June and early July, 2005, when he led the Argentine under-20 youth team to win the world championship. Ferraro: Really, for me, that victory is the pride of me personally and the team. I am proud of what the kids have done. Messi, Aguero, Gago... they let them all. The world knows itself.   Author: Do you remember the first time you saw Messi?   Ferraro: Yes, it was in the South American Cup. In January 2005, I spent nearly 40 days with the team. Pekerman called me before and asked me to take over the team after the cup, so the coach at the time, Ugo Tocali, wanted me to go to Colombia with the team so that I could get a better understanding of the situation.   Author: What is the first impression?   Ferraro: He is a sincere and shy kid, he is very small and the youngest in the team. He has always lived in Europe, so he has not yet fully integrated into the team, and his physical fitness has not yet reached the 90-minute requirement. So, I talked to Tokali and decided to put him in the second half, I believe he can turn things around. Author: But at the World Youth Championship in the Netherlands, in the first game against the United States, you didn't let him start...    Ferraro: He was a little injured at the time, so I let him stay on the bench, but from the second game He began to start the game against Egypt, and he is an irreplaceable absolute main force. When he came from Barcelona, u200bu200bhe was well prepared physically and mentally. He has played for Barcelona's first team, is stronger and knows how to deal with high-level duels. He played the midfielder, not the midfielder; he attacked from the frontcourt, creating murder at any moment. His presence on the court means change and difference.   Author: How does he feel in the team?   Ferraro: Very happy, happier than when I carry the ball on the court. He and Aguero lived in the same room, which did not cause us any trouble. On the contrary, we see that they are happy, get along well, and like their teammates and coaching staff. They know how to respect people and show a serious, low-key and humble attitude. In this nursery, they are all sincere people, and they are like children of the whole team, very polite and very good professional players. Author: You said that Messi is very happy with the ball on the field...    Ferraro: Yes, I have to repeat that Leo likes playing football. Football is his favorite toy. He enjoys it so much. No one can touch the ball. For us, watching him running on the court, the ball seems to be tied to his feet, it is really a pleasure. His dribbling speed is dazzling, and he can always pay attention to the various situations happening around him. He will read the game and predict the next situation. This is very rare, and only the greatest players can do it.   Author: For example, Maradona?   Ferraro: There is only one Diego. Indeed, since a long time ago, people have compared them together. I can only say that both of them were enchanted. However, Messi does not need to be compared with anyone. He is a unique and talented player. He can use any kick to create surprises. This is what people like him.   Author: What does that World Youth Under-20 Championship mean to Messi?   Ferraro: That was his first big explosion as a player, and it was the stage where the whole world knew him. Before going to the Netherlands, few people in Argentina knew about his talents, and when he came back, he was already a national idol. He swept the best player and top scorer and scored two goals in the final... He is already a person, the player that the entire country has been waiting for.  Author: The whole country also expected him to play Germany in the World Cup, but he was left on the bench. During the World Cup, you were with these young guys who could only serve as sparring teams for the national team. You have known Pekerman for many years. What happened in the last match?   Ferraro: The injury to Abondan Zieri made us use up a substitution quota. After that, Jose (Pekerman) originally envisioned another kind of football, another player, and another tactic. In any case, there is no doubt that Pekerman is a great youth team coach. Who can bring the 18-year-old Messi better than him?   Author: Putting aside those controversies, let's talk about the changes after that World Cup.   Ferraro: I think Messi continues to grow. For now, he has not reached the limit. He maintains a low-key personality, doesn't like being criticized, and doesn't do anything to become the focus of the flash. He just wants to play football quietly and feel at ease with his father, mother, and brothers. These relatives protect him and support him like they did during the World Youth Championship in the Netherlands.
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