Marinelli reveals Boca move collapse
By Adam Marshall
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
The gifted Middlesbrough midfielder was loaned to Torino before the January transfer window elapsed, and has had an immediate impact in Serie A.
With his future on Teesside clearly in doubt, the precocious Argentinian has focused on achieving his main goal of playing for his country in the 2004 Olympics.
"The mentality of English football is rare," he protested. "If you are not at least 21 years old, it is complicated for you to play.
"On the other hand, in Argentina, if, at 17 or 18, a player functions well, he is already in the first team.
"And it does not matter about the experience and the challenge against bigger rivals."
Marinelli confessed that he almost rejoined Boca, but a change of coach scuppered the deal.
"If Oscar Tabarez continued as coach, I returned to Boca," he declared. "It was all fixed.
"Later, Carlos Bianchi came and wanted to evaluate all the staff in the pre-season and the dream was punctured.
"But I do not hold a grudge towards Carlos. To the contrary, I believe he acted for the good of the club."
The lack of first team football has not stopped the 20-year-old dreaming of playing in Athens for his country.
"What I want is to leave a good image in football as competitive as this," he told Ole. "I want to light it up.
"This is something that was complicated in Middlesbrough. It does not please me to get experience with the Under-21s or in reserve teams.
"My objective is to return to play for Argentina.
"I am happy and, at the same time, proud because, some days ago, they called me, and said that they are considering me for the pre-Olympic games.
"For me, to play in Athens in 2004 would be spectacular."
Life in Turin has certainly started well enough for the man who had to endure being dubbed 'The new Maradona' when arriving at The Riverside Stadium.
"I have started well," he smiled. "I left England 20 days ago.
"They notified me at five o'clock and, at seven o'clock, the move was sealed.
"I had no doubts and expected that this Italian experience will serve me well in the future."
As for the PSG link, it would appear as though the French capital club have been keeping a close eye on the North East of England, as Boro's Joseph-Desire Job and Sunderland's unsettled forward David Bellion are also on their summer hit-list.