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World Cup qualifying: Juan Manuel Iturbe will play for Paraguay

World Cup qualifying: Juan Manuel Iturbe will play for Paraguay

Argentine-Paraguayan striker Juan Manuel Iturbe, former AS Roma and Argentine youth team player, will lace up the boots for Paraguay in WC qualifying, announced the footballer on his Twitter account.

"In my life I have made many mistakes but thanks to them I have become a better person. I have suffered with conflicts since an early age and that led to different decisions," said the skilled striker referring to his time on the Paraguayan youth team.

"I was always divided between Argentina and Paraguay. Today things have changed and my decision was made thanks to my family, my friends and a town that has always hoped in me," said the player who came through the ranks of Cerro Porteño of Paraguay.

Iturbe, who currently plays for Bournemouth in Switzerland, also played for Argentine club River Plate and Porto in Portugal.

"If I have to apologize I will. And it is clear that I will give until the last for the 'Albirroja'. Today I just hope for the support of an entire country," said Iturbe.

"Iturbo", as he is nicknamed, is 22 years old and was born in Buenos Aires to Paraguayan parents

Paraguay will face Ecuador in Quito on March 24 and will host Brazil in Asuncion on the 29th in WC qualifying.

"Iturbe will give us and important dynamic (fast attackers) is his first call-up, but what we want are players with speed," said Paraguayan coach Ramon Diaz, who coached Iturbe at River Plate.

Paraguay is in fourth position in qualifying with seven points, the same amount of Brazil in third place. Ecuador leads the standings 5 points ahead of Paraguay. 


Text and photo: AFP