River: Milton Casco, that silent leader who reached the record for appearances in the Marcelo Gallardo era

Modesty. That is the word that is repeated the most by people who know milton helmet in deep. Family members, loved ones, colleagues, technicians, assistants… everyone is full of praise to talk about the 34 year old defender. With an uncommon low profile, an enviable football technique and an admirable collective commitment to work and grow, the winger built a profile that fully matches the traits of the cycle of Marcelo Gallardo in River. Therefore, it is no coincidence that, after the 1-0 victory against Gimnasia last Thursday, he has become the player with the most appearances of the era: reached 214 matches and surpassed the emblem Leonardo Ponzio. Silent leader.

With 10 titles, 5 goals and 12 assists in those 214 games, Casco continues to establish himself as one of the most important players in the club’s modern history. Perhaps, without so many flashes or a noticeable level of exposure, but with a constant that defines him as a footballer: the ability to adapt and reinvent himself. Every year was a different world for him. And he always responded from the place where he had to be. Today, in this irregular 2022, it was once again that necessary spare wheel: due to the injury of Robert Rojas and the irregularities of Emanuel Mammana and Andrés Herrera, he returned to Right side, just as he should have done in 2021 after the departure of Gonzalo Montiel.

The multifunctional Milton Casco, always a performerTwitter @RiverPlate

Intelligence. aerobic capacity Polyfunctionality. Character. Recovery. Vision. Deployment. There are many characteristics that make up the football fan of the talented Milton. “He is the most technical footballer in the group”, They have been repeating for years in the privacy of the squad and coaching staff. Even though his level had ups and downs in his early years, Gallardo himself was always very complimentary of his game and his projection, to the point that he is already the player with the longest uninterrupted time at the club: in September he will be seven years old.

His presence in the current team is a guarantee. River has not yet managed to consolidate a reliable and safe team in 2022, but the DT always had one certainty: helmet is holder. For this reason, he played the eight games of the Copa Libertadores from the start and only alternated at the local level to regulate physical loads. He began this semester recovering from a tear in his right calf, but he established himself with a lot of presence and hierarchy in a difficult moment. And his great goal against Barracas Central in the Copa Argentina, to convert after more than two years, four months and two days, he came at the right time. Savior celebration. Total relief.

Casco’s low profile is typical of his world. A fan of fishing and horses, he grew up with a ball under his arm in María Grande, a small town in Entre Ríos with less than eight thousand inhabitants.. His routine was a ritual: in the morning he went to school, had lunch at Sargento Cabral’s house at 1100 and spent the whole afternoon with his three younger brothers, his cousins ​​and his friends in the little field behind the house. Church. The son of a housewife and a policeman father, he began his career at Club Atlético María Grande, where he played for years, his father Oscar, and where he debuted in 2004 in the first division as a striker.

Milton River Plate Training Helmet
Milton River Plate Training Helmet River Plate

Although at 13 he had a fleeting step of less than a month for the Union pension in which he could not stay due to the desire to be close to his family, at 16 he made the great decision of his life: change masonry jobs for professional football. Thus, he plunged into sleep after being captured by Gimnasia in a test in Paraná. As a striker, winger or outside midfielder on both wings, he excelled at the Reserva del Lobo and in 2009 he made his official debut.

Until mid-2012 he was in La Plata to arrive at Newell’s at the request of Tata Martino. He shone in Rosario for three seasons and in 2015 Marcelo Bielsa sought him out for Olympique de Marseille and both Boca and River followed him as he took his first steps in the national team. And the coin fell on Núñez’s side with an express arrival: after a tour with Argentina, he signed his contract on Wednesday, September 9, and on Sunday the 13th he debuted in a superclassic at the Monumental with a 1-0 defeat.

Initially covered by Leonel Vangioni, between 2016 and 2017 could not establish himself in the starting team due to injuries and poor performance. Then, between 2017 and 2018, the Uruguayan Marcelo Saracchi arrived and became a substitute. After the sale of Saracchi to Germany, he ended up being a figure of the champion team in Madrid, he consolidated, vindicated himself and won the hearts of the people who for a long time watched him out of the corner of their eye. At the beginning of 2019 he suffered a broken collarbone and, although he recovered at a good level, Fabrizio Angileri arrived, who in 2020 after the stoppage due to the pandemic earned a place. But in 2021 everything began to change: Gallardo began to use him as an internal midfielder or right back as a replacement for Montiel or Angileri on both sides. He always responded, to the point that he was a figure in the League champion team in the second half of the year as owner of the left wing.

Today Casco has another mission: be one of the pillars of the millionaire reconstruction. River needs him more than ever at a high level on the field of play. His figure conveys confidence. In any position. And his resilience is an example. Milton does not need to raise his voice to be a reference.

River vs. Barracks.  07-13-22
River vs. Barracks. 07-13-22Telam/Nico Varvara