Chile vs Peru: A Look at the Qualifiers and the ‘Pacific Classic’

How do you see this Chile versus Peru for the Qualifiers?

This qualifying is just starting, and the most is expected from our team. It was not a favorable start as the Chilean team wanted. Eduardo Berizzo has been in charge of the national team for a prudent time, but unfortunately with Uruguay something more was expected in terms of football. Leaving points at home is always complex, even though this time there are more places to enter the World Cup. Losing points with teams that on paper are going to fight for a place in the World Cup, except Argentina and Brazil, is happening this way. The matches against Peru are always interesting and nice to watch. Let’s hope it is a sporting way for both the Chilean and Peruvian teams. To us as fans he makes us enjoy a good match at home.

How are these ‘Pacific Classics’ played in the Qualifiers?

They are South American classics, we have always known them that way, they are very special games. The Qualifiers are the most difficult tournaments in the world. Let this not lead our fanaticism to the extra sporting part, let it be a great meeting. One as a fan of his national team will want Chile to win, but it must be carried out in a sporting manner. Beyond the ‘Pacific Classic’, let it be a peaceful environment.

The Peruvian team also adds one point more than the Chilean team at the start of the Qualifiers…

You are seeing a process, generational change, just like us in Chile. It has to be a logical question of age. We are in the same process against players from the new generation. While it is true that immediate results are requested, due to characteristics and history, all South American teams have always been characterized by having great players, and we must pay it forward on the field. I wish all the best to his new coach (Juan Reynoso), but taking advantage of Chile. This type of replacement is required, let’s hope that Chile lives up to what we need in representation.

All of Peru is hopeful in the endless Paolo Guerrero…

There are always interesting players. What about Paolo is quite striking, he was considered a former national team player a while ago and during the week he scored two goals with Liga Deportiva de Quito and remains current. That speaks to the professionalism, the character and what he has demonstrated throughout his entire career. I had the misfortune of facing him on different occasions, and he is a player who delivers excellence, he has an important hierarchy. Because he continues to belong to his national team it is because he has a tremendous character for his country. The new generations must continue learning from these great players.

How much does Chile suffer with the absence of its captain Arturo Vidal?

The representation of Arturo Vidal, Alexis Sánchez, Gary Medel, Charles Aránguiz, are the representatives of our selection. While it is true there must be a generational change, they must set an example for the new generations in our country. Beyond what they can achieve with the national team, I hope the players understand that representing a country makes you proud. More than a decade ago, Chile raised the name of football at an international level, but the fact that Arturo Vidal is not there on this double date of the Qualifiers will be a significant loss, but that is what the coach is there for to find the ideal change.

What memories do you have of your matches with the Peruvian team?

The Peruvian player, like the Chileans, have always been great, but they have had indiscipline problems. In South America, taking out Argentina and Brazil, Chile and Peru have the same characteristics with good players. Trying to play with pressure, I did it for an eternity, but the lack of discipline has bothered us. Although there are a large number of Peruvian and Chilean players who have gone through tremendous leagues, which clearly speaks of the quality of the footballer, but beyond having had a bad time with Paolo Guerrero because of his character, game, I know him with Claudio Pizarro of the Sub 17. I have many memories, others unpleasant, I always remember players who make a difference. When we played, Claudio was a center midfielder and I was a striker, and it transformed differently later, with me being a center back and Claudio a very high-level attacker.

What other Peruvian player do you remember?

Alberto Rodríguez. I was lucky to share a room with him. He was a ‘Mute’, he spoke very little, but I learned from him as central defenders. I hope he also has a good opinion of me. We shared six months at Sporting Braga, more than talking, we played.

I see that you have a great friendship with Cristiano Ronaldo. They met at Sporting Lisbon…

He is a great person. I was fortunate to share with him in Portugal, also in 2015 when I went to study in Spain (Sports Management) and he invited me to his box so I could share a Copa Rey match with my eldest son. His mother, whom I know, was also there, as was her son. I remain with the great person that he is beyond the media that he is. People consider him a little arrogant, but when it comes to life he is a great person.

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2023-10-09 17:54:57
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