A black hole in the chest may hurt less than what most of us Peruvians woke up with after the defeat of the peruvian national team against Australia. It hurts a lot, saying goodbye to the possibility of qualifying for the World Cup Qatar 2022 after being unable to overcome a rival who, in the antechamber, we had already thrashed with detailed explanations on social networks of why we wanted the key easy.
It is, although it sounds severe, very disappointing that a team as neat as ours has been defeated by a discreet rival, with a basic game, hardly physical and without major stars than his fervor for effort. Incredible, it is hard to admit, that that eleven without elaboration or any skill similar to our “chocolate”, reduced to a minimum the brutal attacking potential of our led -until yesterday- by Ricardo Gareca.
They had us studied and quite well. Perhaps for this reason the high pressure that forced us to play long to our bad luck and the incisive mark that bothered the talented red and white midfielder too much. Those of Australia found the manual to disconnect the national luminary in attack and let all the technical and tactical wonder that Gianluca Lapadula personifies wander in the small area.
They disarmed us.
But what is even worse, they made us morally disarm.
Surely the above has coincided with a bad day for many. Cracked by a recent injury, André Carrillo was nothing more than an intermittent prodigy, forced to play on the most decisive day because, as Claudio Pizarro once said, it is what it is. And what there is, unfortunately, is not much.
Christian Cueva, called to be the epicenter of our football, could barely string together a short game and, while he did not have the ball, debate with himself about his unforced errors. Nervousness that would give way to loss of conviction and with it, to despair.
With the trident shattered tactically and emotionally, the team began to crumble as a result of anxiety and frustration while a disciplined and convinced team grew up in front.
The rest is history.
We lost the opportunity to win in regulation time and after another zero in extra time, we fell on penalties. The failure of Luis Advincula and after alex valeria it is anecdotal.
What is left for us now? Start by understanding that the loss to Australia is not a failure. Admit that like 4 years ago, the Peruvian team reached a playoff with the fair. With a universe of players who, although interstellar figures with the red and white, in the daily life of their clubs were nothing more than supporting actors.
With average players for high competition and given the impossibility of finding variants of a similar level in key positions such as attack and creation, we gave innumerable fights and were protagonists of memorable milestones such as qualifying for a World Cup after 36 years and the supernatural performances in Copa América, where we were even finalists after more than 4 decades.
We lived 7 incredible years with this selection of Gareca, who created a universe parallel to ours in sporting, social and political matters, and populated it with heroism and exploits. Let’s be honest, El “Tigre” built a Macondo for Peruvians: an oasis of joy, of success, of absolute union. His thing has been so huge that he transcended football.
Is it the end of a cycle? Possibly. For now, let’s hope that the defeat helps to open up the crisis in Peruvian soccer and prioritize the structural changes that Gareca himself warned so many times. We need a change in the bases so that the successes are not more happy scenes that make up a totally opposite reality.
Sadness like anger is understandable, but it needs to end soon. It is towards the future where all the efforts of the institutions, organizations and clubs responsible for taking our diverse Peruvian soccer forward should be installed. And it is on that field where we are losing, the weather is good, by a landslide.
We already missed a World Cup, let’s not let the turtle escape us in the hope of four more years of Gareca.
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