“This is where I met my first love, where I grew up, where I was taught to live and defend these colors like a warrior, where I once had a great dream.”
Cristián ‘Kily’ González certainly said all the right things after being presented as Rosario Central’s new manager last week but has been around Argentinian football long enough to know that sentimentality only gets you so far. After two years in charge of the club’s reserves, the 45-year-old gets his ‘dream’ first move into management aiming to restore El Canalla to past glories.
The last of Central’s four top flight titles coming in 1987 that looks a long way off but with Diego Cocca steering the club away from relegation, González is only looking up and acknowledged that a 33-year drought is far too long.
“I want us to regain our sense of belonging and identity. Hopefully we can achieve a united Central, no individual is more important than the club. We want every player who enters the pitch to understand the shirt they’re representing.”
After a ninth-placed finish to the Superliga season, Cocca and the club decided not to renew his contract this month leaving the way clear for González to make the upward step, signing an 18-month deal as manager.
The former Argentina international’s time spent with the reserves will likely prove useful with a number of Central’s academy youngsters looking to push through to the senior side. González is well placed to run the rule over a number of those players and has already stated his commitment to improving the club from the ground up.