South Shields pulled off a stunning coup when Julio joined the club in September 2015.
The Sunderland AFC favourite had finished his professional playing days more than two years earlier, with a toe injury curtailing his time with Middlesbrough at the age of 32.
He started his career in his native Argentina with Argentinos Juniors before making the move to Sunderland in 2000, where he quickly became one of their most popular players.
Capable of playing at left-back, on the left of midfield or centrally, Julio was part of the Black Cats team which won promotion to the Premier League in 2005, but following their relegation a year later, he switched clubs to Middlesbrough.
There, too, he was loved, and he spent seven largely happy seasons at the Riverside before being forced to retire.
If that had been the end of things, Julio would have been a huge loss to football, and he made his first tentative steps back into the game when he lined up for Sunderland Sunday League side Willow Pond in 2014.
During his time there, he and his team-mates attended a South Shields FC talk-in with his former colleague Kevin Phillips, and from there, a link with the Mariners grew.
Eventually, he agreed to join the club in September 2015, and interest in Shields quickly mushroomed as crowds shot up.
Julio was a vital part of the side which won the Northern League Division Two title in 2015-16, with his play in the centre of midfield always catching the eye.
He is a figure who appears to be loved almost wherever he goes, and combines his role with Shields with a coaching position within Sunderland’s academy.
Internationally, meanwhile, Julio was never capped at senior level by Argentina, but did captain his country to glory in the Under-20 World Cup in 2001, playing alongside the likes of Fabricio Coloccini, Javier Saviola, Nicolas Burdisso and Maxi Rodriguez.