Gabriel Batistuta speaks on Lionel Messi, Julián Álvarez, 2002 World Cup, Argentina


Gabriel Batistuta spoke about Lionel Messi, Julián Álvarez, the 2002 World Cup and the Argentina national team.

Batistuta spoke in an interview with La Nación regarding the Lionel Messi, the World Cup and the Argentina national team. In the second part of the interview, Batistuta speaks about the 2002 World Cup and how the team was playing well up until one year before. Here is what he had to say:

“And how do you go about controlling it? I tell you: Take me to the team, as it is, until the World Cup. How do you do that? They tell me that I failed at the 2002 World Cup and no, I didn’t fail a damn thing. There is no failure for me. I often argue over failure. What is failure? Failure is when you don’t try.

“Now if you ask me: “What more could you have done to win the 2002 World Cup? I answer nothing. I did what I was able to do at my availability. I had no more and I can speak for my peers as well. And it hurts, it’s going to hurt my whole life but from then on you tell me I failed, no.

“All of this to tell you that it’s not easy. Argentina 1978: If the one from Holland doesn’t hit the post, we don’t become world champions.”

In regards to Lionel Messi and the Argentina national team and which players he likes:

“All, I like them all because they have personality. Many times we said it to me; first we condemn ourselves for thinking we had Jesus Christ and it’s Messi, yes but not Jesus Christ. And after that we condemn him too.

“We caused pain for a long time. Now that changed, you see? Because he too feels more free with these guys/ Of course that if I have the ball and I can give it to Messi, I will give it.

“If I have two team mates and one is Messi and the other is Fulano, I would want to give it to Messi… But if I can. If there is a wall and he is behind it, I have to give it to someone else. Well, these kids understand that. And they all play well.

“If they can’t give it to Messi, they will give it after because Messi is not an idiopt.

“Do you know what it must be like to feel that others expect you to do everything? What if we all do it together? It feels different. Messi is not stupid, if you play at that level, you are not an idiot.

“Go and ask Messi if he prefers to play in Guardiola’s Barcelona, where he shared everything with great players or play alone and score all of the goals. That’s why in the national team, you must be happy seeing the personality of all the guys. I love them.”

Regarding Julián Álvarez:

“I like him,. Talking to Pep, he told me: “Bati, whoever plays well in Reconquista, plays well in Italy”. And he is right. But then there are other things that influence such as language, customs and all that.”

“Pep asked me what I thought and I told him “Here, he is killing it.” And he told me: “Son of a bitch, if you play well in Reconquista, you play well anywhere.”

He also commented on his younger son asking him if he ever scored a goal in his career:

“Yeah but that was my fault because I never showed him anything in my obsession with not bringing football home.”


    • Vlahovic seems to have had a really good connection with every Argentine attacker he’s shared the pitch with so far. I remember he was friends with Gonzalez, Dybala (sat on the pitch with him talking after Dybala played his last minutes for Juve if I’m not wrong) and now Fideo is the next. Hope Fideo can feed him many assists and get closer to the record

    • What else is new? At least Molina is playing as a RB, in what seems to a 5-3-2 not a 3-5-2. I like this better because it means Molina is further down and this translates better to the NT context than playing as a wing-back.

      Fabrizio Angileri is playing as a LB for Getafe today. Strange to see him outside of Argentine league.

      • It is too early to say but Felix seems to be the undisputed starter of Simeone. He got 3 assists today. Morata today is the starter, then Griezman is the first sub who replaces Morata. Safe to say that Correa is fourth or even fifth (there is still Cunha) in pecking order.

        That’s not good for Correa. 5 forwards for 2 spots are too many.

  1. Off topic..
    What a circus going on at PSG with Neymar and Mbappe. I have to admit, I am loving it that Neymar is standing up for himself. His whole entourage is fighting. I am hating this guy Mbappe, way too arrogant and lack of respect. Not sure what Messi is thinking in this mess. But once again, I am loving it that Neymar is standing up against the injustice.

  2. Lol Cuti got the MOM award against Chelsea according to the Spurs official website. He got 32% of votes. Even me as his big fan did not think that he got a good game. The Spurs fans really love him like crazy.

    Cuti got the MOM award is like cherry on top for the Spurs as many argued that the second goal should not have been allowed and Cuti got a red card instead.

    • Cuti is very temperament. But I expect his temperament to be more like Mascherano’s than Ortega’s. I am sure he won’t go over the limit and cost us the game. All the Cucurella’s thing atarted because in the first half, Cucu stepped on his inner thigh. It looked really painful. But no one noticed it. I guess that hair thing was the revenge.

      • > I am sure he won’t go over the limit and cost us the game

        Cuti AKA Yellow card magnet…his card count counters this statement. He’s kinda of dick during the game. it’s like the defender that you hate to play against but love to have as a teammate like Ramos. I like aggressive play and attitude on the field like Masche but yellows will cost us. He needs to improve.

    • I hope I’m not wrong, but I think Cuti watches himself more with Argentina because he understands how sacred the shirt is and how high the stakes are. He does occasionally do things like the celebration against the Peruvian who missed the penalty but I doubt he’ll be pulling player’s hair in the WC. The main issue is yellows so I hope he limits himself to only necessary yellows in the WC

      • Yes, i can clearly see that too, though hope that i’m not also wrong about it, lol! as the yellow’s can be a issue that would be good for Scaloni to fix if he pick’s too many yellow’s, then who will be his cover etc.,.

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