Nico Ibáñez, the “animal in goal” who surprised from the first training session and is now looking for the Liga MX title

Jorge Vivaldo, Nicolás Ibáñez’s former coach, recounts the striker’s first steps in football, as well as the qualities he discovered in his figure before he became the top scorer

Jorge Vivaldo was a coach Nicholas Ibanez at Club Comunicaciones before reaching the maximum circle. The first impression he had of the current striker Pachuca Through his assistant Adrián Álvarez, who warned him with a surprised face that they had a “crack” in their ranks, a “different” player, a “phenomenon”, a description that as the games went by, ‘Flaco’, as also the exporter’s nickname, was confirmed is, with the addition of the “goal animal”, due to its unique qualities that the striker who is now seeking the title Liga MX.

“I remember very well that we came and did the training, first the physical part, and then we divided the team into attacking and defensive groups. I had to work on what has to do with the defense phase, and Adrián Álvarez, my assistant, on the attack phase. Later, when he finished training, the coaching staff gathered to talk, talk, and Adrián told me ‘Flaco, number nine is crack!’ Nico came without being able to score, he tells me ‘you don’t know what he shoots with his head, you don’t know what diagonals he shoots, what he jumps’. The next day we did much more extensive work with the team, then we started to discover Nice. Incredible. Then he started scoring goals, he didn’t stop,” said Vivaldo in an interview with ESPN.

“I remember the look on the face of my assistant Adrián who told me ‘9 is a phenomenon, look how different he is,'” says the former Argentine goalkeeper emotionally.

‘Flaco’ Vivaldo, who revealed he was close to playing in Mexican football for Pachuca Mr Santoshe put the header and diagonals as a passing option, as the main offensive characteristics Nico Ibanezwith which he finally reached the First League with Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata in 2016.

“For me, he is an animal from the goal. An animal that is always in search of power, it is aggressive, it is very aggressive when it comes to play. He’s aggressive when he doesn’t have the ball, which is very important for a striker, and he’s always wanted to play a part in recovery. Nico Ibanez He wasn’t afraid to tackle the centre-backs, here sometimes defenders or centre-backs kicked too much and I never saw him slow down. They are one of those guys who give a hundred percent when they go out to play a game. Strikers like a coach would always like to have”.

Off the field, ‘Flaco’ Vivaldo highlighted the modesty of Nic Ibáñez, a footballer who always listens to the coach’s instructions, who always trains one hundred percent, who supports his teammates, so there were few things to polish. , such as controlling his left leg.

“We put more emphasis on the left foot, I always tell my players that there is no such thing as an unskilled foot, there is a foot that is not working, and he really liked that. We pointed out some things to him, but he already had many natural conditions, he trained in an important team like Lanús”.

‘Flaco’ Vivaldo compares with Nico Ibanez with ‘Manteco’ Martínez, the striker he came to play with Boca Juniorsbecause of the way he executes diagonals, but if you add to that his header and sacrifice in defense, he believes that the current Pachuca striker has a distinctive style.

“Because of his speed, movement, way of attacking, because he even has the characteristics to be able to play with another striker like him, but he reminded me of ‘Mantec’ Martínez, because of the shape of the diagonals that the Player of the Boca threw in, that’s what Nico has, but he has very special style. He plays like Ibáñez and that’s good, because at that time there weren’t many strikers who had those characteristics”.

‘Flaco’ Vivaldo, who is now waiting for a chance to return to the bench, will watch the final of Mexican football between Pachuca Mr Tolucawith the desire that his student, the one who was already warned about his quality at the first training session, will be a champion.

“He fills me with pride, he surpassed me. The expectations we had from him were far exceeded, and that makes me happy,” he concluded.

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