In parallel to the arrival of Ricardo Sá Pinto, Vasco received a reinforcement that will soon be able to help the Portuguese coach: midfielder Leonardo Gil, who arrived yesterday (15) on loan from Al-Ittihad, from Saudi Arabia. But after all, who is the new Argentine from São Januário?
Now 29, he was revealed by CAI and passed by Olympus, Estudiantes, went up with Talleres and lived his best moment at Rosario Central – all clubs in Argentina -, before having his economic rights purchased by the Arab club. The player draws attention for his versatility in the midfield and the quality of the dead ball.
“Gil plays as a central midfielder. Here [na Argentina] it is called ‘5 mixed’, because it has recovery in the marking and goes out to play. He has a good finish and at Rosário Central he was in charge of the fouls and corners “, Sports Argentine journalist Gonzalo Molina Rackovic, from the profile Latin ball.
At Vasco, Leonardo Gil will meet a longtime friend: Martín Benítez, his companion from the times of the Argentine national team at the base.
“I have known Martín for a long time, we were together in the youth teams of the Argentine national team. We faced each other many times when he played for Independiente. I have a good relationship with him. About Cano, I know his career, especially when he went to Mexico [León e Pachuca]. He is an excellent player. I will try to complement them “, he told the Vasco TV.
Gil is also friends with another great acquaintance of the Vasco fans, the former midfielder Guiñazu, who defended the club between 2013 and 2015, and who worked with him in Talleres, in 2016, in the access campaign.
“I always talk to Cholo [apelido de Guiñazu]. He’s an excellent person. I learned a lot from him. He was an excellent player. He advised me a lot and talked a lot about Vasco. I said that I come to a wonderful city and a very big club. And he says that what the fans want most is to leave everything on the field “, said Gil, who has the nickname El Colo, which is an Argentine expression that characterizes redheaded people.
Quoted Vasco’s story against racism
Leonardo Gil did his “homework” and arrived at Vasco aware of the rich history of the club. In an interview with Vasco TV, cited details, such as the fight against prejudice and racism.
“I know it is the first club that accepted people of the black race. One of the first clubs that built their stadium with the help of their own fans working on it. It is impressive. Not everyone has the strength to do such things,” he said.
Observed by Chile’s coach Reinaldo Rueda, Leonardo Gil decided to become Chilean naturalized through his grandmother, who was born in the country. However, the midfielder has not yet been called up by La Roja, which still allows him to defend the Argentine team, if called.
In 2015, Chile was led by Jorge Sampaoli – today at Atlético-MG – and the coach tried to convince him to obtain dual nationality, but at the time, Leonardo Gil did not want to.