Atltico – Osasuna (6.30 pm)
He is 23 years old and has 80 matches in ‘rojillo’ behind him. It is a gourmet product from Tajonar, with an Olympic silver and an unusual contract until 2031. In May, about an empty Metropolitan, they almost took away a League from Atltico: “That day sparks flew.”
- Griezmann UEFA accepts Atltico’s appeal and plays against Milan
Garinoain is about half an hour by car from Pamplona. It is a small town of just 500 inhabitants where Jon Moncayola (1998) began to get intimate with the ball. Where I dreamed of being Pual or Cruchaga someday for the first time. On those tracks and on that fronton, so many times in silence. Because Garinoain is a place that only gets agitated when summer comes. There, in Jon’s room, an Olympic silver is hidden. With it he proudly poses on his WhatsApp profile. Without the echo of thousands (or millions) of balls in the streets of his Garinoain, it would have been impossible for this afternoon (6.30 pm) to be able to defend Osasuna’s shirt at the Wanda Metropolitano.
- Tell me about Garinoain. What were those tracks where he played as a child?
- It is a small town, although in summer it has more people. For those of us who are from there and live all year, there were no problems of space to play. The tracks are always free. Here in Pamplona you see the kids playing in the parks, which may not even have goalkeepers. There, we have always had everything well assembled.
- It would be difficult to get children together to play a game.
- Well, there is Valdorba, which is a very beautiful area with a group of villages. And, between five from one place and three from another, we got together. On weekends, when parents were more free to drive, we can organize good parties. If not, those of us who would be there: four, five … We didn’t have that many games anyway, but we had the goalkeeper to hit shots.
- They say that he spent hours kicking balls on the frontn.
- Yes, we have spent hours and hours at the pediment. That’s why they say I have such big twins.
- Now that you are famous, what do they say to you when you go to town?
- They treat me as always, like one more. That has not changed. Although when the kids see me on the slopes, they always want me to play soccer with them. When I go down to town, it’s usually to hang out with my friends and have a couple of beers. So I tell the kids, “We’ll play another day.”
- In 2006, he jumped onto the grass of El Sadar with his father to celebrate fourth place. How was that?
- My father and I were partners and we took to the field. I was a little scared, because whenever he jumped someone the security would take him. I was only eight years old and then I was even scared when people yelled at the referee in moments of tension. But I really enjoyed it, there were a lot of people on the grass.
- Five months ago I signed a contract with Osasuna until 2031. Does that give more security or vertigo?
- It was an important step to show the kids a bit that they want to play in Osasuna, and they are from Osasuna, that there is a solid project and it can be trusted. Seeing how football is doing, signing more or less years of contract is a bit irrelevant. Now they pay you the clause right away. And I do not have a 1,000 million as Pedri [la suya es de 22]. Hopefully I’m 10 here and they’re good at sports.
- A few weeks before renewing, they almost ruined the Liga al Atltico at Wanda Metropolitano.
- A few sparks flew that day. We did not risk anything and we put ourselves ahead. There was some movement between Budimir and Savic. It was all a bit bizarre, but hey, now we are going to the Wanda again to compete. This time we are not even saved.
- The numbers say that the Attico is now more vulnerable behind.
- This week we have seen videos and we have worked the different systems with which they can play. They have one of the best templates and, for my taste, the most complete. Likewise, Madrid has more individualities, but Atltico has a starting team of guarantees and first-class substitutes in the world.
- What is the secret so that Tajonar talents do not stop sprouting?
- The luck of Navarra is that there is only one team in the top category. Any Navarrese who stands out has possibilities. Now things are being done very well. The club realized that there are kids who can come.
- What do the successes of Azpilicueta, Monreal, Ral Garca or Javi Martnez, among others, mean to people from the Osasuna quarry like you?
- It means realizing that people like us have come out of the quarry and that great things can be done. Soccer is not just staying in Osasuna and conforming, but thinking that great things can be done. Also here in Osasuna. Every time a kid who has been in Tajonar and wins something important, as happened with the Champions League in Azpilicueta with Chelsea, we are happy and it fills us with pride.
- What is Jagoba Arrasate for Jon Moncayola?
- He is the coach who has made me debut and with whom I have spent my entire professional career. He is the only coach I have had since I arrived in Osasuna and I am very grateful for everything he has given me and gives me. Hopefully things continue to go well for both of us.
- How did the positive fit before the U21 European Championship?
- It was a bit of a disappointment at the way it all happened. Being focused and, suddenly, being told that you have tested positive for Covid and not being able to say goodbye to people. Fortunately, then I was given the opportunity to enjoy the Olympic Games. The medal fixed everything bad that had happened.
- What about the myths about the Olympic Village? If it can be counted …
- There are many things that are true. But this year, with the pandemic, we have been deprived in Tokyo of spending time with more athletes. It is an experience to live at least once.
- Have you already found a place for that Olympic medal?
- The truth is, no. I have it in the town house, in my room, because when I returned, everyone was excited to see it. It’s amazing what it weighs. In a few months from now, when people are tired, I will put a frame to enjoy it in my room.
Reference from elmundo