Why did Mancini summon Mateo Retegui?
A dull attack is not a new problem for the Italians. Gone are the days when the boot-shaped country produced a series of quality goalscorers such as Gianluca Vialli, Fabrizio Ravanelli, Christian Vieri, Roberto Baggio, Alessandro Del Piero or Filippo Inzaghi, names that evoke many emotions.
For those with a better memory, Paulo Rossi, Roberto Bettega and Alessandro Altobelli can be added. Further away is Gigi Riva, one of the legends of world football, still holding the record of scoring 35 goals for the Thien Thanh shirt team.
But now, when the Itaia team prepares for the campaign to defend the EURO championship, their attack is having too many problems, which is considered the main reason why the Azzurri missed the 2022 World Cup. Owner Ciro Immobile is Injured, Giacomo Raspadori is also absent, Andra Belotti is not starting at Roma, while Gianluca Scamacca is not playing regularly at West Ham.
Coach Mancini is not without seeing the problem: “Italy has a shortage of talent, the players can’t even play. The reigning Serie A champions, Milan also launched a squad without any Italian players in the recent match against Salernitana. Complaining is pointless because every coach, every club has its own choice. We have to find a solution, even if it’s not easy.”
And so the opportunity came to Retegui, who coach Mancini has long kept an eye on. “Retegui has played very well in the Argentina tournament for the past two years. He has the qualities that Italy lacks. I thought he would not agree to join the Italian national team, but Retegui nodded immediately.
Who is Mateo Retegui?
Mateo Retegui was born on April 29, 1999, in San Fernando – Argentina, but has Italian citizenship because his grandfather was originally from a town in the island of Sicily.
Retegui’s family is traditionally athletic, but about field hockey. Mateo’s father Carlos participated in three Olympics, and took charge of both the men’s and women’s national teams after retiring.
Like father Like son. Retegui also followed his father’s footsteps for a long time until 2016 when he chose football as the main path, when from River Plate, where he started his career as a midfielder but was not facilitated, to rival Boca Juniors turned to the rock like a true striker.
In 2018, Retegui made his debut for a new club, replacing Carlos Tevez in the last minutes of a 1-0 win over Patronato. But Petegui, despite being in Argentina U19 and U20, was not given any more chances at La Bombonera. Most of his career has been spent wandering on loan, first at Estudiantes (season 2019/20), where Juan Sebastian Veron is president (now Vice President), and then Talleres Cordoba (season 2020/). 21).
Last year’s turning point came when Retegui joined Tigre, a club in the northern suburbs of Buenos Aires, and burst onto the scene with countless goals. “Retegui possesses a killer instinct,” commented former player Veron, who used to work with Mancini at Lazio, advising his former teammates to keep an eye on him and give him a chance because Retegui is very suitable for the play style of the Italian team.
Retegui is 1.86m tall, physically fit and plays diligently and diligently. He is an all-round striker, good with both feet and strong in the air. Guillermo Barros Schelotto, Retegui’s first coach, discovered this and oriented him to play as a striker instead of a midfielder before, telling La Gazzetta dello Sport: “He possesses the same qualities as Toni in 2006 Italy currently does not own this type of striker, except for Immobile. He’s a strong number nine.”
Retegui scored 19 goals in 27 matches last season to help Tigre finish 7th in the Argentine league. This season, he still maintains a terrible goal density, 6 goals in only 8 matches, making Retegui a target of many clubs in Europe. Roma through Totti, now his agent, has been in contact since 2020, Udinese tried to buy him last January, and Milan considers Retegui as the successor to Olivier Giroud and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, ..
It would be great if coach Mancini gave Retegui the opportunity to present himself at Diego Armando Maradona’s stadium, the land of the quintessence of Italian and Argentine football. And another Oriundi was born…
Retegui, player of the big games
Retegui has scored 11 goals against the 5 biggest teams in Argentina since 2020. That is an impressive number that no one can do in the same period. Victims of Retegui include Racing (4 goals), River Plate, Boca Juniors, Independiente (2 goals) and San Lorenzo (1 goal).
Mateo Retegui: “Totti cares, knows my sister plays hockey”
In August 2020, Retegui signed a contract with CT10 Management, a representative company owned by Totti. He recalls: “It was so proud and happy to be noticed by someone as famous as Totti. I am very pleased to be represented by him. Totti knew everything about my family, even my sister playing hockey. He also knows how my brother plays.”