Nicolás Medina (35) retired almost a year ago from professional football. He did it playing in Andorra, where he was a top scorer and figure. After that, the former attacker went to Spain to work in UD Montijo, table of the RFEF Second Division. There, he combines technical management tasks with sports management. Under this scenario, the “9 ″ of the 2007 Canadian Under-20 World Cup talks with AS and talks about his new life in Europe.
“I am very well. It’s different, but I like being linked to football. To continue living in this world, so to speak, for my office to be a field, although putting soccer shoes in your backpack is not the same as computers or books,” says the former Chilean national team.
– You have a double role at UD Montijo…
– Yes, I am second coach in the first team, that is normally in the mornings. There we coordinate training and help with match analysis. And in the afternoons I dedicate myself to the children, I am the coordinator of the quarry and director of the academy.
– And which function do you like the most?
– I like being a coach better. Now since I do both, I wouldn’t know how to choose, because I’ve had good feedback from my bosses, but I think that if I only had an office, I wouldn’t experience it so well. Now since I have a field, I don’t miss soccer so much. In the mornings it is more competitive and in the afternoons it is more formative.
– And how is life in Spain?
– We are about three hours from Madrid, in Extremadura. It is a very quiet life, village life. It gives me the opportunity to spend a lot of time with my family, because in a big city you lose time with longer journeys. In the mornings I can drop my daughters off at school, I can eat with them and share in the afternoons as well.
– You do not want to return to Chile…
– None (laughs). At the moment, I don’t even think about it. Obviously, for the life of football, things can change due to the jobs that may appear, but in principle I project myself with the people who are working at UD Montijo, in Spain and basically in Europe. My daughters already have nationality.
– Did you go to Andorra for something more family or personal than football?
– Yes, the first motivation to return to Europe was for my family. I wanted my daughters to grow up here, with a different education, a different way of life. We had already experienced it and with my wife we decided to return, obviously if the possibility arose. It went well for us and in Andorra we said: “Either we stay here or we go to Spain”.
– And how was the experience of living in Andorra?
– It’s a beautiful place, it’s the most beautiful country I’ve ever been to. There is a lot of nature, mountains, etc. I like to go trekking. With my daughters we went to a lake that was 2,500 meters high, an adventure. Andorra offered you all these things, beyond what I enjoyed in football in a growing league. The beauty was day to day, a quiet country with 100% security. It is quality of life.
– How did you feel about your football career?
– With a very good, thankful for everything and happy. I was already thinking about quitting football. This gave me beautiful moments and others not so much, but from those last ones I always wanted to learn and grow. I’m talking about injuries or bad decisions. I always got the positive out of everything. That helps me as a person and for what I can project as a coach. And the withdrawal, there was already a physical and mental fatigue, it was necessary to disconnect.
– Did you miss something in your career?
– I don’t think so, maybe I’ll end up in Chile for another year, but I’ll only answer that now that you ask me. I played in the U, Spain, Bulgaria, Andorra and a U20 World Cup. Here in Spain they give a lot of value to what I experienced and they let me know in this other area. In Chile it seems that you have to play in the top teams to be good and it is not like that.
– Did playing that World Cup and finishing third give you a plus for everything that came later in your career?
– Absolutely. The first plus was being trained in the U with how difficult that is, because there are always massive tests and everyone wants to play there. And then I played a World Cup. The group that can say that is super small and coming out third is for even smaller groups.