Some feel that, at 31, he has fallen off his perch of late.
He has been prone to injuries over the past two years and an unfamiliar vulnerability crept into his performances at the end of the qualifiying campaign.
But against Nigeria, he was back to his best, and even scored the goal that put Paraguay into the lead.
He makes it clear that the stakes are high in this World Cup.
"Today, our team is much better than in France 98," he says.
But the long-term view is not so rosy: "I'm pessimistic. Within two or
three years, 10 or 12 of our players will be leaving the game.
"Jose Luis Chilavert, myself, Francisco Arce, Celso Ayala, Jose Cardozo, Struway, Benitez and Alvarenga are all around 30 or over, and without ready replacements.
"We lack depth in a number of positions."
Gamarra has hinted that he might retire from international football after the World Cup.
And in his own quiet way, he would love to go out on a high note.