Hernan Crespo has expressed his concerns that Mateo Retegui is being compared to legendary Fiorentina striker Gabriel Batistuta and believes that such comparisons could create unrealistic expectations for the 23-year-old
Mateo Retegui scored on his first two international appearances for the Italian national team against England and Malta, becoming the first player to do so in over 50 years.
Despite his impressive start, Hernan Crespo believes that there is too much hype surrounding the 23-year-old and that he needs protection instead of mass hysteria.
Crespo advises Retegui to get to know Italian players better
In a recent interview with Gazzetta dello Sport, Crespo played down comparisons between Retegui and Gabriel Batistuta, stating that expectations may be too high for the young striker.
Still, Crespo is full of praise for Retegui adding that: “He couldn’t have started better.”
He continued: “But I would say that he still has a long way to go and people have to be patient with him. You can see that he comes from another world because football in Argentina is completely different from the Italian game.
“First of all, he needs to get to know his new teammates. A few days away is not enough to properly familiarise yourself with a new environment. I know Retegui and I maintain that Italy did very well to land him and call him up. Now we need to protect him and not put too much pressure on him.”
Although Retegui has only played one league match for his parent club Boca Juniors. He is in his third full season of senior football. He has been linked with a move to Europe, particularly Serie A and Inter.
Crespo was asked about the comparisons between Retegui and Batistuta.
When asked if he thought the comparisons were a bit of an exaggeration, Crespo replied: “I would say yes. Batistuta has done a lot, a lot. Retegui has just started. Shall we give him time to grow?”