Gonzalo Higuain has a history of missing crucial chances in huge games… but he had the best season of his career under Maurizio Sarri and can thrive for Chelsea

Gonzalo Higuain is a misunderstood character. Few players have experienced the highs and lows like the Argentine, and when he is in a strop he makes the proverbial bear with a sore head seem like Michael McIntyre on happy pills.

These are testing times for the striker, though an old friend from his days in the bay of Naples might be capable of bringing back the smiles.

Higuain is contracted to Juventus until June 2021, but is currently on loan to AC Milan. His switch to the Rossoneri last summer was enforced by the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo to Juve. Not for the first time in his career, Higuain was surplus to requirements and politely invited to tootle off, like when he left Real Madrid for Napoli in July 2013.

Higuian, is nicknamed ‘el Pipita’ as a tribute to his footballing father Jorge, who was called ‘el Pipa’. He was born in France, where his dad was playing, but the family moved back to Argentina when Gonzalo was ten months old, when Jorge joined River Plate.

Higuain has endured many disappointments that would have crushed other players. Perhaps the most infamous was a golden chance in the 2014 World Cup final. The score was 0-0 after twenty minutes, when a mis-judged headed back pass by Toni Kross put the South American one on one with Manuel Neuer.

The number nine sent a low drive wide of the post, and the opening was gone. Teammate Javier Mascherano threw his hands onto his head. He knew what a glorious opportunity it was. Everyone watching around the world knew, and that rushed shot came back to haunt Argentina when they lost 1-0 after extra time.

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