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Pablo Aimar: 'We didn’t want to be Batman. We wanted to be Maradona'

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Pablo Aimar discusses his heroes, his coaches, his time at Valencia and his current job as the Argentina Under-17s boss

By The Coaches’ Voice for the Guardian Sport Network

You learn football by playing. There are good, intelligent coaches, with a lot of sense, who with just a few words can help you and give you advice that will be useful for the future. They do it by questioning you, too: “How do you sort this situation out? Doing what you normally do, or something else?” But young footballers can’t realise any of this without playing.

Today, I feel like I am where I want to be – coach of the Argentina Under 17s – and I’m enjoying it. Being a national age-group coach gives me the time top-division coaches don’t have. I like working with young players. I have heard that Argentina isn’t producing so many footballers any more. That might have been the case at some point, but that’s why working with youngsters appealed to me. If things hadn’t worked out with the national team, I’d be doing it somewhere else.

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