Javier Mascherano Admitted He Once 'Tore His Anus' During Heroic Tackle Against Arjen Robben
Javier Mascherano has claimed that he "tore his anus" in his last-ditch effort to deny Arjen Robben in the final minute of Argentina's World Cup semi-final victory over the Netherlands.
Argentina would defeat the Netherlands in a penalty shootout at the Neo Quimica Arena in Brazil to set up a showdown with Germany in the final.
But Mascherano, 36, would later open up about what happened during his heroic match-saving tackle on Robben.
The former Barcelona star explained: "I thought I had slipped, I thought I wouldn't make it, but I tore my anus on that move, the pain [...] it was terrible.
"I threw myself into it. I could have been sent off. It could have been a penalty but anyone could have done that, I had the luck to get there."
Mascherano, who retired from international duty after Argentina's exit from the 2018 World Cup, had picked up a nasty head injury during the Netherlands clash.
However, the Argentine insisted that the pain was well worth it as he described the opportunity to play in a World Cup final as one of the highlights of his career.
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"I cried at the end because I have spent a lot of time waiting for this moment," he said at the time.
"This is my third World Cup and maybe my last one. It's a delight to be in the final, a delight that lifts your soul.
"It's something you can't explain, it's something I never imagined would happen.
"And I know the people at home will be happy because two generations could not see Argentina in the final of a World Cup, they can see us there now so we are happy for that."
Mascherano left Barcelona in 2018 and would subsequently play for Hebei China Fortune and Estudiantes.
The former Liverpool and West Ham man has since announced his retirement from club football.
"I want to announce that today I am retiring from soccer professionally," he said on Sunday.
"I want to thank this club that gave me the opportunity to finish my career in Argentina."
Featured Image Credit: Twitter
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