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GABRIEL BATISTUTA

     
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FIRST KICKS

From soccer matches and the dust of 'earthworm', the long and narrow pitch where Gabriel gave the first kick of the ball, the pit of the Bombonera, the stadium of Boca: a bumpy ride, a rocky road, fraught, full of difficulties, pitfalls , choices, and inevitably of luck. Without the blindfolded goddess, it is true, ranging from a few parts, but often, the lot must be helped and in the end, rarely reaches those who do not deserve it and vice versa.

And to think that the expectation of becoming a footballer and scorer Batistuta has not matured once. His favorite sport, initially, it was basketball. And to what Gabriel has not broken through the gateway to Europe and climbed the steps to the sound of goals Olympus, perhaps, he never thought to live, to become rich and famous with the ball. His is a story of missed opportunities and chances exploited well, promotions and failures, of blunders and insights.

It wasn't by chance that Bati made his first team debut in September 25, 1988. The spark was struck in January 1987, when, after an intense courtship, an emissary of the Newell's Old Boys of Rosario, on a dark car, "kidnapped" by Gabriel Reconquista to start on the path to glory. It was a difficult choice, but uncertain, but necessary. The father Osmar agreed: it was time to groped. A Rosary Bati had to deal with jealousy and obstacles, but found a way to squeeze even intense friendships. Gabriel was lucky enough to find a coach with blind faith in him that Marcelo Bielsa, current coach of the national team of Argentina. Unexpected, sudden, the call in the first team.

The Lion King made his debut in the league, playing for half an hour against San Martin in Tucuman. Newell's was defeated for a zero. But the true debut came three days later. Due to a 'blessed' injury to striker holder Gabrich, Bati was deployed with her on the back nine in the Libertadores Cup semi-final against San Lorenzo. No goals, but left his heart on the field. Upon awakening, the newspaper, a title that sounded like a premonition: "Batistuta, holds great promise."

Gabriel, however, did not put all agree. Champions like Passarella and Sivori, great players, bad connoisseurs, not glimpsed him as a player worthy of the name. Both, however, have had to change their minds quickly. Passarella excluded and discriminated against him at the time of the River, and he did purge during his management of the national team of Argentina, Sivori has inexplicably vilified in the press before falling into oblivion. But Gabriel has never sought revenge or comparisons with anyone. He was just Batistuta: a humble player, but able to write a page of his football far more rosy delantori. After apprenticeship in Newell's Old Boys of Rosario and bench in the River Plate, Settimio Aloisio, one of football they will be, in a move to strategist, he did land to Boca Juniors, the team's Gabriel, the team with the which (he promised) will close his distinguished career. Meanwhile, also in 1989, and again for about Septimius Aloisio, Batistuta made his first Italian experience at the tournament in Viareggio with Deportivo. Having drawn with AC Milan (the twelfth was Francesco Toldo), Gabriel shone against CSKA Sofia making a hat-trick. The Adventure of Deportivo ended on penalties against Torino. The decisive mistake was just Bati in the worst way that celebrated its twentieth birthday. On a Sunday of rest of the tournament leaders Deportivo took the kids to see a real Argentine football game: Fiorentina-Roma. Gabriel was struck by the extraordinary setting of the public, by the warmth of those fans waving flags purple.

That day could not even imagine that in the short span of two years those fans would be forever his ....


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