Boca Juniors’ greatest player in history, Juan Roman Riquelme, believes there is no comparison between Marcelo Gallardo and Carlos Bianchi.
Since River Plate won the Copa Libertadores under Marcelo Gallardo last Sunday, the fans have dared to start calling him River’s ‘Viceroy’ as a comparison with legendary Carlos Bianchi who bears that nickname and Riquelme didn’t respond to it very well.
Juan Roman is arguably the most revered player in Boca Juniors’ history and his opinion is always juicy when it comes to talking shop about this beautiful sport in Argentina, he was the key figure in Carlos Bianchi’s incredible career as a manager during his time at Boca Juniors and his trophy case cannot be compared to anybody else.
This Tuesday, Roman granted an interview to Fox Sports Radio in Argentina to discuss River’s recent success and how he feels for not being able to see his beloved Boca Juniors as the champions in such an anticipated final.
The whole interview was a masterclass of football analysis, in which Riquelme took charge and proved that he could very well become a great manager for Boca Juniors in the future.
But this appearance in the radio show also proved that this defeat truly hurt him, mainly because of how important the trophy was.
— FOX Sports Argentina (@FOXSportsArg) December 11, 2018
In Argentine football history, there is no doubt that Marcelo Gallardo already is River Plate’s greatest and most precocious manager ever just for the success he’s gotten on his first four years as the club’s manager.
‘Muñeco’ won the Copa Sudamericana on his first year, and then two Copa Libertadores with the one his squad won last Sunday against Boca.
But the comparisons with the ‘Viceroy’ become laughable once you go and check the accolades that Carlos Bianchi has won as a coach, the man first won everything with Velez Sarsfield from Argentina between 1993 and 1996, then he led Boca Juniors’ golden era with Juan Roman Riquelme as his best player between 1998 and 2003.
In that period of time, Carlos won four Copa Libertadores and two FIFA Club World Cup trophies (known as the Intercontinental Cup back in the day).
Just on the international titles alone, Bianchi has won quite a bit more than Gallardo, and ‘Muñeco’ has jet to win his first league title whereas the ‘Viceroy’ won seven throughout his whole career between the two clubs he managed.
So naturally, when Roman had the chance to talk about these comparisons, it was clear where his allegiances were going to end up.
"Gallardo es un DT muy importante para su club. Nosotros hemos tenido la suerte de tener al DT mas grande de todos los tiempos.. Bianchi ganó 4 Libertadores y 3 copas del mundo, no se puede comparar".
— #RIQUELME2019 (@fotosroman10) December 11, 2018
“There is no doubt that Gallardo became a very important manager for his club. But we had the biggest Argentine manager of all time (Carlos Bianchi), he can’t be compared with anyone,” said Riquelme during the interview.
“We are talking about the best in history and we were lucky enough to have him in our club. This manager won four Copa Libertadores and three FIFA Club World Cups, he simply is the best of all time.”
“Being a manager is not easy. Sometimes you can also give your opinion from outside of the bubble. But for me, it was more painful losing against Independiente del Valle than losing this final.”
“Reaching this stage is not easy, and only Boca can afford to lose a Copa Libertadores final. I always thought this when I was a player.”
“Only the two best clubs in the competition can reach the final. You may like how your team plays or not, how they defend or attack.”
“But we do agree that the two best teams are the ones that played the final. River knows which game was the most important in their history, it was the one in which they got relegated against Belgrano.”
“We hope we never get to live a situation like that. It’s hard to put yourself in another person’s shoes.”
“They must be very happy, celebrating. But I have to be respectful when I give my opinion from the outside, and say that it’s not the same playing a Copa Libertadores final than suffer relegation. Getting relegated is too much to endure, too much suffering,” he concluded.
— Eterno Boca (@EternoBoca12) December 11, 2018
What is your take on Juan Roman Riquelme’s incendiary comments against River Plate and Marcelo Gallardo? Please share your opinion in the comment section down below.