A few days ago I had the pleasure of taking part in the #CuálFue (What was?) quiz on the Tiempo de Fútbol radio programme, on the Uruguayan Sport 890 radio station, where I had a long chat about football a few months ago.
Below are some of the highlights of the interview, but if you’d like to listen to the whole interview just click on this link.
Who were the best players you played with? And against?
As teammates, Enzo Francescoli was one of those who took on extra responsibility and stood out as a great leader both on and off the pitch, and Gianfranco Zola was one of a kind who improved you as a player.
As far as rivals go, I had most problems against Roy Keane in England. This was because of his positioning on the pitch and dangerous one-on-one situations where I had to make decisions against him and challenge in the air. It was a lesson I learnt at the end of my career.
Who was the most entertaining teammate you had? And the most brutal?
There were loads, but Kily González at Zaragoza stands out the most. As soon as he arrived he would come into the dressing room with his jokes, music and dancing… he would always make his teammates smile one way or another
I also played with many brutes! In my second year at Chelsea I injured the internal ligament in my right knee, and I could not play for 3 months. But I still played more than Dennis Wise that season as he was banned for 14 matches. He started with a 3-match ban as he was sent off in preseason, which I had never seen before. I also remember a two-footed challenge in the 93rd minute of a match we were winning 4-0.
A rival who made you look silly?
I’m going back to the Barcelona Dream Team with Johan Cruyff. The most difficult thing was not touching the ball all game. If they went a goal up, you could forget it. Through the years with Zaragoza we tried everything: pressing up the field, sitting back, launching long balls…
I had the job of marking Guardiola, and he knew how to give me a real working over. When I was close to him, he had the perfect touch and control, and if I gave him a couple of metres he would wait for me and drive me insane. I once got sent off at the Camp Nou for a two-footed challenge on him.
What was the goal you celebrated most of all?
There are two, and neither of them were mine. One was the last penalty kick scored by Manteca Martínez in the Copa América. Which was even better as I was in line to take the next one. The other goal was by Nayim, in the final of the Cup Winner’s Cup against Arsenal from about halfway in the 120th minute. It has to be the best goal in the history of European finals.
In terms of my own goals, it would have to be the second goal I scored at the old Wembley in the FA Cup semi-final against Newcastle.