The defender explains the play that "changed everything" in his role in FC Barcelona
Javier Mascherano was interviewed by The Guardian, where he talked about his situation in Barça and also about the future. He explained that he though he would not be many years in the Catalan club. He also praised Busquets and said he would like to become coach.
He also talked about the play that "changed everything." It was 2010/11 Champions League round of 16, against Arsenal. Bendtner was about to score and this is what happened:
The play that changed everything
"That moment marked me. If Bendtner had controlled the ball and gone the other way, he’d have got away from me and … uffff! … I don’t know what would’ve happened. But it happened the way it happened and we ended up winning that Champions League. Things worked out well.”
“I actually played that game in midfield; it was Busquets who played at centre-back,” he recalls. “But from then on, I played at centre-back: that tackle changed everything. I found my position and I’ve been there all these years, trying to keep my place and keep this level. Until when? I don’t know because Barcelona demand a lot and have the possibility to sign whoever they want.”
Adaptation in Barça
“After five, six months I thought it was unlikely I’d be here long: my characteristics seemed to go against everything Barcelona stood for."
"I knew I wouldn’t take Sergio Busquets’ place. Impossible, impossible. Think of another player anywhere who could do what Busquets does for this team … there isn’t one. It was hard to see myself having a long stay here.”
"I’d like to try. If you’re going to do something, you need to prepare properly, and I will prepare myself. Then I’ll see if I can take the next step. I’d start in Argentina, for sure.”
Future and position on the field
"One day I won’t play for Barcelona. I’ll go and play somewhere else and I’m sure I’ll do so as a central midfielder. That’s what I’ll try to do, because it’s the position I like. Circumstance dictates and because of my desire to keep playing here I adapted. I like centre-back, but midfield is the position I chose to make my career.”
Departure from Liverpool
"They promised me that if there was a good offer they’d release me because the club was in a process of disintegration.But [then the club] didn’t always tell the truth; it’s the player whose image gets damaged, the same happened to Fernando [Torres], but things were clear: I never lied. When Rafa [Benítez] went, they knew I’d leave. I felt the project was falling apart. Rafa had gone, there was no direction.” He pauses. “And the offer was Barcelona.”