Lionel Scaloni played less than one season in Mallorca. In his final years as a player, Scaloni joined the La Liga club on loan from Lazio for the 2008/2009 season, after which he returned to the Serie A side. However, 14 years later, the now 44-year-old was welcomed as if he were still part of the club.
After leading Argentina to their first World Cup win in 36 years, Scaloni was invited back by the club he was loaned to for an official pre-match ceremony in San Moix ahead of the home team’s La Liga tie against Real Valladolid . The Argentinian manager received the club shirt with his name and number five as a framed memento.
A World Cup champion still very much remembered in Mallorca 🥇
— LaLiga English (@LaLigaEN) January 7, 2023
Mallorca won 1–0 after Abdon Prats scored the only goal of the match in stoppage time of the second half.
After ending his playing career with Atalanta in 2015, Scaloni took on an assistant manager gig at Sevilla and then the Argentina national team under Jorge Sampaoli before managing the U20s and finally getting the national team gig in 2018.
Under his tenure, Argentina has won the 2021 Copa América, the 2022 World Cup and La Finalissima against European champions Italy.
In Qatar 2022, Argentina lost to Saudi Arabia’s Scaloni in the opener, ending their 36-game unbeaten streak before pulling their socks off and winning their remaining six games to clinch the title.