Buenos Aires Times

sports Russia 2018

Mascherano wants to play in midfield for La Selección

The 33-year-old said today one of the reasons he decided to play in China was to have an opportunity to return to his favoured position.

Wednesday 7 March, 2018
Javier Mascherano, 33, has played 141 times for the Argentine national team. He recently spent eight seasons at Barcelona, but now plays for China Hebei Fortune.
Javier Mascherano, 33, has played 141 times for the Argentine national team. He recently spent eight seasons at Barcelona, but now plays for China Hebei Fortune. Foto:Fotobaires

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Javier Mascherano, one of the most experienced and respected members of the Argentine national team, said today he wants to play in his preferred position of central midfield at the coming World Cup this summer in Russia.

“I want to play in the #5 position because I’ve played there my whole life and it’s where I feel most comfortable. Because of specific circumstances I had to adapt,” he told TyC Sports.

Mascherano added that the only reason he switched to playing centre-back for Barcelona was because “the team needed it, and Sergio Busquets is the best 5 in the world.”

If he is chosen for the World Cup squad, Mascherano said, the tournament will be his last appearances for the Albiceleste.

In the same interview, Mascherano commented on other issues related to La Selección ahead of this summer’s tournament: he lauded Messi, who he believes is still getting better; he gave goalkeeper Sergio Romero a vote of confidence, despite Romero sitting on Manchester United’s bench all season; and he stressed the importance of Argentina developing a squad of players that play regularly with each other, not just lining up 11 stars.

-TIMES/PERFIL

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