Barcelona's Mascherano wants to coach after retirement
Javier Mascherano of FC Barcelona has stated that he wants to take on the role of a manager after he hangs his boots up as a player.
The Argentina international has been one of the most influential players for the club from Catalonia in recent years since moving from Liverpool back in 2010. In his five seasons with the club, Mascherano has won three La Liga titles, two UEFA Champions League medals and a couple of Copa Del Rey trophies with the Spanish giants.
Known for his leadership qualities on the pitch, the Argentine has been a versatile figure for both club and country and has shifted between midfield and defense roles whenever he was required to. Before his time with Barcelona and Liverpool, Mascherano played for West Ham United, Corinthians and River Plate.
And the 31-year-old has revealed that he wants to become a coach after he calls time on his playing career as he wants to continue being associated with the game and pass on the experience he gained to the young players.
Talking to Radio Metro, Mascherano said, "I would become a coach." "As a player, things are easier, but it gets more complicated when you go on the other side.
"I want to pass on everything my coaches taught me. In football, things go full circle."
Mascherano admits shifting to central defense in order to get more playing time
Initially starting as a defensive midfielder, the Argentina vice-captain adapted to a role of a central defender under former Barca coach Pep Guardiola and since has slotted to the position quite often in his career.
It was a necessary move in order to get playing time according to the San Lorenzo native, who admitted knowing he was unlikely to displace Sergio Busquets in the centre of the park.
"At that time, many central defenders were injured and Sergio Busquets had emerged in midfield," he said. "Guardiola noticed my characteristics and physique and liked what he saw when he put me in defence.
"I came to Barcelona knowing I was signed as a backup and it would be very difficult to hold down a place in midfield. Obviously I would have fought for my place but one of the best in the world was playing in my position.
"Meanwhile with Argentina I was made captain and had to win my place on two fronts. Over time though, I've managed to earn my place," he concluded.
Barcelona started off their new La Liga campaign with a 1-0 victory against Athletic Bilbao at the San Mames. Their next fixture is at home as they welcome Malaga to the Camp Nou this Saturday.