Sports Nicknames - Valdanito, El Polaco

Hernan Jorge Crespo was a prolific Argentinian striker who had a respectable career as a player as well as a manager.

Argentinian star striker Hernan Crespo aka Valdanito - Profile drawing.  Illustration.  Avatar art.

Crespo's career started with River Plate. He played for the Argentinian club at different age group levels. His youth career spanned between 1988 and 1993. He was a bright young prospect at the River Plate setup and looked set for an admirable career. Based on his key performances, he earned himself a promotion to the senior team in 1993.

Crespo played at the highest level for River Plate between 1993 and 1996. This was followed by a transfer to Parma, where he stayed till 2000.



Crespo's playing style resembled the legendary Argentinian striker Jorge Alberto Francisco Valdano Castellanos, who himself was nicknamed "The Philosopher of Football."

Crespo was a complete package. He was a coach's dream forward, who could lead the charge and retain his composure in possession. His eye for the goal was exceptional as well. The prolific goal scorer reminded the fans of Valdano.

Based on that, his nickname Valdanito became famous around the world. Crespo did live up to the expectations of the fans and media and went on to become the fourth-highest goal scorer in Argentinian football. He indeed was the rightful heir to the great Valdano.

El Polaco:

Hernan Crespo's grandmother was Polish and that is the origin of his second nickname "El Polaco."

Achievements and Accomplishments:

Crespo was the most expensive player in the world at the club level when Lazio bought Crespo from Parma for 56 million euros. The deal was signed in 2000.

Crespo won the Argentine Primera Division in 1993 and 1994 and was part of the River Plate side that won the 1996 Copa Libertadores.

At Parma he won the Coppa Italia and Supercoppa Italiana in 1999. In addition to that, he was a key member of the Parma side that won the UEFA Cup 1998-1999. He was the man of the match of the UEFA Cup final. Later in his career, he won a couple of Supercoppa Italiana titles with Lazio and AC Milan.

Between 2003 and 2008, Crespo moved to Chelsea. During the period, he won the Premier League 2005-06 and FA Community Shield in 2005.

Chelsea loaned him to Inter Milan. At Inter-Milan, he was part of the side that won three consecutive Serie A titles between 2007 and 2009. He also won another two Supercoppa Italiana titles in 2006 and 2008.

National Team:

Crespo played for Argentina between 1995 and 2007. His first major appearance was at the 1996 summer Olympics, where he was the leading goal scorer in the event. His performances were crucial as Argentina finished with the silver medal. At the 2006 FIFA World Cup, he won the silver shoe for scoring second most goals.


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