LONDON: Brighton manager Roberto De Zerbi spoke of his pride in Alexis Mac Allister after he helped Argentina win the World Cup, saying the Seagulls midfielder was one of the best players at the tournament.
Argentina lifted the trophy for the first time since 1986 following a dramatic final win over France on penalties on Sunday.
De Zerbi has no plans to pitch Mac Allister straight back into first-team action at the Premier League club, with the 23-year-old granted a two-week break.
“Yes we are very proud for him,” said De Zerbi ahead of Wednesday’s fourth-round League Cup tie against third-tier Charlton.
“I think he was one of the best players in the World Cup competition, his style of play was clear, he didn’t make mistakes, he understood (what to do) before the play.”
Mac Allister started all six of Argentina’s matches in Qatar after being an unused substitute in the shock opening defeat to Saudi Arabia.
“I wrote many messages to him. I am very happy for him and for us, for him now there are two weeks of holiday and we wait for him to continue in our competition,” added De Zerbi.
“After one month of the World Cup where he has had to be strong because of the pressure and emotion, he needs a break.
“We will use other players while he is away.”