No MESSI, no victory as Argentina lose 4-2 against Nigeria

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Javier Mascherano Argentina
Javier Mascherano Argentina

No MESSI, no victory for Argentina as they let a two goal lead slip away in 4-2 loss to Nigeria.

After picking up a 1-0 win against Russia, the team was without Lionel MESSI for the match against Nigeria. Despite no Messi, Jorge SAMPAOLI’s men got off to a solid start scoring twice in the first half. A free kick goal by Ever BANEGA was shortly followed by Sergio AGUERO’s second goal in two matches to make it 2-0 with very little left to go in opening 45 minutes. However, a free kick for the Nigerians resulted in a goal after back-up goalkeeper Agustin MARCHESIN was unable to keep it out.

The second half was one to forget. It started with Sergio AGUERO having to be substituted off after fainting in the dressing room (good news is that he is back with the team and feeling better). But it wasn’t the attack that should have worried SAMPAOLI as the midfield and more specifically the 3 man back line crumbled in the second 45 minutes. Three goals meant an Argentina loss and a first loss for Jorge SAMPAOLI as Argentina coach.

A worrying sight for SAMPAOLI is that without Lionel MESSI, this Argentina team looks fairly average.

71 COMMENTS

  1. It was a good experience for Sampaoli to test his 3-3-3-1, which is his favorite system. I can see some good things during these 2 games:

    – Pavon: Amazed by his technique and his calm. I have feeling that he can always take his take when he has the ball.

    – Lo Celso: Quite impressive especially for someone who doesn’t play much with his club. Great technique and good vista. In the past I saw his long range passing ability with his club, pity that he didn’t have opportunity to show that against Russia.

    – Kranevitter: didn’t see him again since he left la Liga. Did his job against Russia. Great to see that Sampaoli gave him his chance to prove himself.

    – Aguero’s resurrection: certainly our best forward. Guardiola’s style of play is quite similar to that of Sampaoli, which is based on high possession rate and which is perfect for him. Aguero is like Benzema, he likes to have the ball.

    – 3 central midfielders: the game vs Russia was a true demonstration of Sampaoli’s philosophy based on the high possession rate, Lo Celso-Kranevitter-Enzo Perez brought the perfect balance(DM+box-2box+deeplying playmaker). Enzo Perez is a sure value. Otamendi and Maschereno also contributed a lot to the construction. With Messi dropped back from time to time, they almost played with 6 midfielders. It was the 1st time that his Argentina team achieved what he expected in terms of quality of play.

    – Salvio’s defending ability: very good game finally, he’s doing exactly what Moses did for Chelsea.

    Things to improve:
    – Too much space left by the wingers: because of this system, wingers are pushed to play in a more advanced position. Against Nigeria, the wingers didn’t cover enough the defense, which allowed fast/powerful player like Iwobi to exploit the space.

    – Same for the midfielders: they didn’t help much against Nigeria, the CBs need to defend by themselves.

    – Paredes, Mammana and Perotti: quite suprised that we didn’t see any of them, even for 20 minutes.

    I think 3-3-3-1 is the way to go despite that they lost against Nigeria. Maybe just a few adjustment to do:

    – Replacing Lo Celso by Acuna so that we have someone on the left who play closer to the defense.

    – Di Maria will then play a more “central” role as a 2nd playmaker. Perotti is actually a better fit as he can cut inside from the left. I hope Sampaoli will consider as well Joaquim Correa. We need a fast and powerful player like him.

    – Sampaoli may consider again Pizarro.

    I think that’s what the new team looks like:
    Romero-Mercado,Maschereno,Otamendi-Enzo Perez,Kranevitter,Acuna-Pavon,Messi,Di Maria-Aguero

  2. I maintain that Argentina’s problem is that you have an ageing side. By the 60th minute, Mascherano and Otamendi were gasping for breath. Both of them have had their best days behind them. Look at the way Iwobi left Mascherano for dead for the fourth goal. Now, five years ago, Mascherano would not be easily nutmeged like that.

    • You are not wrong, but its not that simple, the defense was exposed and over worked all game because of the 3 man back line and Banega being useless defensively giving them no cover and all the midfield subs desiding to camp out waaaaaay up the field. This was Sampolis error, no true #5, two extremely advanced wingers, no fullbacks, 3 slow center backs.. wtf do you expect. Even Ruggeri, Samuel and Ayala in their prime would have struggled. Especially after the Nigerian coach outclassed Sampa and subbed in wing players jumping on the opportunity we gifted them.

      • Yupp true it was a Mistake from the Coaches side, But Mistakes happens, And Banega is not a No 5 either so what can we expect from a Player who is played out of his natural position?? Failures will teach more definitely, I think the defeat against Nigeria came at perfect time.

  3. Argentina Should go—-

    ————————-Romero——————
    —–Mussachiho—-Otamendi——M,Rojo-
    ————Pizzaro———-Lanzini———–
    Pavon————————————Acuna-
    —–Messi————Aguro———A.Corria

  4. Well you guys may disagree with me but what I see is improvement. We r playing a new system and its gonna take little time to adopt. I can see we r playing more with balls, more and more passing is there, mids r moving and trying to help in attacks – that’s all positive but its another thing that we r lacking a creative mid. But Sampa is doing his job turning a below average mid to a good one. I guess Sampa is trying to create sub players. If we don’t get Biglia then Kran will do. If we don’t get Messi then Dybala will do – its brilliant! He is trying every possible subs. Di Maria, Salvio, Benega, No.9, even GK. To win WC we’ll need a strong bench too. I like it.

    But we need more friendly to play together. Think abt Tite, he did same with Brazil, the difference is he got lot more match then Sampa to make his team work. 3 man defense got no problem as long as there ia a DM to help in defense. Biglia is that man for us. Kran may play as Biglia but he needs more lesson. We really need someone to play with brain in our mid. Benega is good when he is good but he is inconsistent, depending on him is like playing blind poker. Lanzini may be an option, I’m sure Sampa will do something. I just don’t know why Di Maria plays like that. Why he is so bad sometimes. Why he is like the worst man we have in our team. He can do better, he can be a threat like Messi.

    When we play with Messi, our opponents r always in threat, they knows that and there defense remains guarding him that weaks their attk, that’s a big part. I actually like Kun, he is somewhat like Messi. He can dribble, he can shoot, he can score and he can play as AM too – thats what we need. Icardi may be a very good choice but he remains isolated and I don’t think he’ll fit in Sampas plan if he only thinks he is the target man to just shoot when he gets the ball.

    Well, its better we loose now then in the WC. We can improve now. I thank to Nigeria for defeting us, surely it’ll make Sampa bring new improvements.

    Masch may got age and could do some blunder also, that’s part of the game. But he is a legend. He is still one of the best. I wish he get well soon. His passing helped us in 2014, he’ll do great again. Pep is using Otamendi in MC in a new role, surely that’s gonna benefit us. I miss Mercado. I like his aggression, his fitness, his ability to run forward.

    Another noticable thing is we r doing good pressing, that’s great. Recovering ball fast is good to demoralize oponents.

    Vamos Argentina!!

    • More or less agreed. The only things we should look into the friendlies are how to correct the mistakes and improve. Dont look into the results. I am glad we did not win or drew. Aguero’s fainting came as blessing in disguise because the first combination looked good to me. Its a great thing that Sampaoli has some Home Work before the WC not in the WC.
      I back my team and Believe. (As i always do)

      • Yep, totally agreed 🙂

        One thing I really don’t like when we comment he should be in the team or he should not be. We have a great coach in charge and we should have some faith on him. We r improving and we’ll do great if we get enough time.

  5. Watching Peru vs New Zealand match…Mascherano’s horrendous back pass (Peru vs Argentina) taking Peru to WC. Peruvian should put a Mascherano’s status somewhere in Lima!!

  6. It looks like Macherano picked up an injury during the game. That might explain why he played so badly in the second half. And with Kun fainting at half time, I can see why the team wasn’t ready to play well.

    • Yes he is out for at least four weeks. This could be the cause why Mascherano played badly in the second half. Hope speedy recovery for him. He is a legend!

  7. Of course i am disappointed with the defeat. However, think abt it that way, we are lucky that this is just a friendly match, if it happened earlier during the qualifier or later in the world cup finals, it can be very costly to us. Moreover, both the coaches and the players can learn from this defeat, it could be valuable to us.

    We played very well in the first half, Nigeria wasnt even able to get close to our penalty box. However, after HT, i am not sure if the team was affected mentally by what happened to Aguero, the team lost their concentration and conceded 3 goals in succession.

    Dybala didnt play well, other than his through ball to Pavon (who created Aguero’s goal eventually) he was quiet most of the times, and he lost the ball a few times which it disappointed me.

    I think if we are to win this world cup, we have to make the Messi-Dybala partnership works and of course Dybala has to be in great form.

  8. Sampaoli seems like he need 10 more games to figure out his entire team.

    This round he probably realized that Aguero has done what has been expected from his number 2 “confirmed” striker Benedetto.

    Pavon is the right wing of choice, not rigoni, not salvio, not lautaro acosta, not Di Maria, JLgomes.

    Enzo has cemented his spot. Solid game since he has started.

    Things that he still has doubts over (i hope he does):
    – 3rd defender to join Mercado and Otamendi. Pezzella has player fairly well. Mercado should not be undisputed starter in my opinion.
    – no 5: he seems to like Biglia, but biglia is having a bad season in Milan, playing in front of a similar 3 man defense. He just doesn’t fit that system.
    – Playmaker to link with Messi: this time he tried Lo Celso, which was decent. But I don’t understand why Papu Gomez is Lo Celso’s replacement.
    – LW: He clearly wont let Di Maria go, but the fact that he has called Perotti shows that he has his doubts, or want to improve from that point. Acuna is also a strong candidate.
    – Back up Striker: Icardi, Benedetto, Alario, Aguero all have been called. The first time I saw Benedetto, I could tell that he isn’t NT material. However he’s killing the Primera, so Sampaoli is hoping for a miracle that’s probably never gonna happen. At this point, I’d rather give a chance to Lautaro Martinez or bring Alario back.

    Sampaoli has an infinity amount of more players to try to find out who fits these positions.

    At some point, if it doesnt work out in the first 2 games in the World Cup then he will have to change the system to accommodate the players at his disposal.

    • Lautaro Martinez is interesting idea but Alario is supernumearay here because the same type striker as Icardi while the second better. Benedetto is quite different type. Not the Aguero or Icardi mould. He is outstanding forward by several capabilities. Most important is he didn’t scored as far – right. That’s judge against him. But the guy clearly needs just one goal to gain confidence which he apparently has not as new player of NT. He is shaky when it come to finish quite different than it is in club where he is cold blood killer – best striker since years (and not just poker). In thet point he is similar to Higuain. Killer for club and shaky in NT. But unlike Higuain he has still 3 things in his own defense:

      1. he is just new player who probably needs one goal to unlock

      2. He is most hardworking of our forward. None of the rest strikers is running so much. ‘

      3. His understanding of Pavon’s crosses is by heart.

      But people are too much tendentious depending only on win/lost criterion. All they were saying Benedetto was good against Ecuador and was not good against Nigeria. But to be honest the only difference between the two his performances was that Argentina first game won and lost in second. In both Benedetto didn’t scored but was working a lot and marking himself as good player to flow, quick football.

  9. Guys, yes we suffered against Nigeria but this loss could be blessing in disguse. Failure teach person more lessons than winning. I strongly believe Sampoali would like to improve this team. My only concern is Masch. should be played in DM as we need his vision. Also no more Benega, I do not know what he does on the pitch. After watching Eng-Brazil yesterday, my nerves are calm because as people consider Brazil as favorite, they did not look super elite. England had couple of chances to win that game also we have Messi. Neymar looked like chicken in yesterday’s game and if we are able to frustrate Neymar(if we play against Brazil), we can have good chance of beating them as well(remember is spoilt brat and loses his temp. easily). Also this team is put for Messi to perform best, hence without Messi, not just Argentina or Barcelona, any team would suffer. I believe in Argentian and we will have WC in 2018. May god bless us.

  10. it is ovious we cant Play combination Football…we dont have the Players…i would go for an Ultra defensive System and hope messi can make something upfront…
    Romero
    mercado-mascherano-otamendi-pezzella-rojo (5 defenders to Close the back)
    Pizarro (Ultra defensive midfielder to Close those huge gaps)
    Enzo perez – biglia (to attack in midfield and pass theball as quick as possible)
    messi – aguero (maybe These two can find some link to Play together and maybe they can score one Goal per match)

    5-3-2

    sit very very deep and try not to concede so many Goals and maybe upfront messi can score
    we dont have good enough midfielders to Play with the ball…all we have is Counter attack and luck upfront…

    • That is recipe for disaster just like in Brazil, Chile or USA. Also do not forget Messi will be 31 next year, not 27. For argentina to win WC, we need to create system where every one know their role and help overall team. I believe Sampoali is trying to do so. My only concern is Sampoali teams tends to gassed out after 60min as with sevilla or chile. We need to substitute older players with younger one after 60mins or so.

      • they are on their own anyway…any midfielder we have doesnt deliver…so it doesnt make any difference if we field no creative Players…as Long as there is not 3 riquelmes i would drop any of them for the good of Standing tight in defence….scoring isnt a Team effort for us ist a messi effort…he doesnt Need anybody…and he cant Count on anybody…ist him alone or nothing for us

  11. Good afternoon guys. As a Super eagles fan I hope I am welcome here. I watched the whole game and it appeared to me that your guys just ran out of gas in the second half.

    If you ask for my opinion, Argentina’s problem is that you have an ageing squad. By the 70th minute, Mascherano could barely walk. Tom,e to look to the youth.

      • How he was ridiculous? Stop talk a shit. Did you even watched the game?

        Belluschi was mediocree (like most of our players). He was to cautious and cautious Belluschi losts his outstanding playmaking abilities. But he had some flashes like beautifull cross pass to Benedetto. Mik, better watch himself instead read desinformation:

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9qNLb82MxFA

        • @Gonzalo, we have to accept that Belluschi can contribute nothing to the team. It was only a friendly and the coach just wanted to see whether he has something to offer to the team but he failed although he played little time. We have better options in midfield who are young and talented so it is pointless to include Belluschi and Banega in the team once again. These guys must be kept away from the national team.

          • Dadir@

            I think we can’t judge a player after less than 2 full games. That’s unfair. If wee do this then more players would have to be excluded once and for all. For example – Lanzini, who was not impressive in his only performance as far. Icardi the same. He did nothing as far playing more than one game. Dybala very little. Papu, Rigoni and more. If we will judge the players on the same rule – wheter they impresed us after 1-2 games then they all should be out.

            And age factor is not important now just few months before WC becayse we need best players currently and not for next 2-5 years (in this case the younger should be preferred indeed), which means also players 32-25 may make WC team if will show they are best on his positions ATM. Belluschi deserved more minutes. If not also Lanzini didn’t deserved and many more players.

        • Thats true if we say Belluschi played ridiculously what would we say when watching Di Maria?? He is been playing ridiculously for so many years for us. (Infact he is so talented after Messi, but his decision making is so ridiculous sometimes) We cant use different rules for different players, Belluschi created a chance for Beneditto too, his position also was changed so how can we measure him when he merely played around 40 minutes. Its very rarely a player makes a huge impact while debuting. I would love to see this guy in place of Banega & age is not a matter, the World cup is only months away, So for now we can use Belluschi i guess. Lanzini is another player who should have been tried he ticks almost all our requirements in Midfield, And Please don’t bash players only after 1 game thats illogical.Well some likes some players some don’t.

  12. Argentina can take this lose in positive way can avoid such mistakes in upcoming big stages ,i think messi is all hope for argentina in russia no doubt ..we need garay,marcado.otamendi in defense .rojo lamela can make the squad in better shape.sampaoli need somuch to do.hope he can do better than this .inshallah

  13. We want possession football but we are not ready to embrace the possibility of conceding on the counter. we want defensively strong team but we complain about how we waste attacking talents on the bench and how it undermines Argentine attacking culture. A Sampaoli team will always be open to counter attack, no matter whether he plays a back 3 or back 4. Ideally, his players should be able to make the transition between back3 and back4 seamlessly. The key problem is that we don’t have Central Midfielders that can help any coach in the world atm. Sampa is trying to figure it out. We praise him when he includes new players on the list. But we don’t like him or, the new,Motivated-feel-the-shirt-players when our team doesn’t win.

  14. When your team winning 2-0 then losing 2-4 something goes drastically wrong. Messi not only helps to create chances or soccer goals but also helped in defense as no team attack with out marking messi therefore messi indirectly helped defense a lot. After messi its aguero who is thread for any team. Kun might not be successful like city but in epl aguero man marked which helped city defense and inform kun impact is same like messi in Argentina. First half against Nigeria while Aguero played Argentina looking superior but when aguero substituted and c grade benedito came and out of from dybala playing Nigeria became superior and exposed defense with pace. African sides always create problems due to pace not forgotten what Ghana did against Germany n Portugal in WC2014. Argentine defense is extremely poor badly need pacey F.Mori n Rojo back in the team, frankly i don’t have problem with 3man defense if they are fast and defended with 5man depending on situation. Rulli Romero Cabearo should be our GK, beneditto must be dropped and higuain/alario will be the 3rd striker behind aguero/icardi. Lanzini is best and young midfielder Argentina have and mark my words post worldcup lanzini name new superstar will born. Win covered many flaws but lose exposed everything therefore i have no problem losing pointless game if it helps in development more over this Argentine team isn’t ready for worldcup but potential winner hope they find right combination before worldcup and peck at the right moment which matter 2002 WCQ of both Brazil n Argentina were best example

  15. Some three days ago everybody on Mundo showered Mascherano with praise and from last night till now most of the people here are calling for Mascherano dropping. Really? Is that how to support a team? Mascherano is the most important player after Messi you have to deal with that no matter you like him or hate him. He is the most experienced player in the squad and he is flexible. The only thing I would like to see is him playing in his natural position. If a player deserves to be dropped from the team then it’s Banega. This guy has ZERO impact on the team. I don’t know what kind of football he was playing last night. He didn’t help the team defensively and offensively. Whenever I see him in the then I know what can we expect. All other midfielders in the squad are head and shoulders above him and we need Lanzini in his postion. I liked Lo Celso though he is very inexperienced but playing with great players at country and club level will him more experience very soo. Paredes hasn’t got a chance yet and that is unfair IMO.

  16. Guys i think this defeat will do wonders for us than the win against Russia, Had we won against Nigeria, (A Fast Team) we all may have thought all problems have sorted , But with the Loss now Sampaoli & his staff have work cut out, And they will find a solution(He has a gud team) Sometimes Losing teaches a great lesson, Losing a Friendly Match is far better than Losing a Match in World Cup after all.

    This Loss especially Under Sampa will make us better, definitely.

  17. I don’t think 3 backline is the problem. IMO choice of the players was the problem.

    ———-Romero——–
    –Marcado-Garay-Otame—
    Pavon–Pere-Bigl—Acuna
    ———-Lanzi———
    —-Messi—-Aguero—–

    Currently, I think this will be the best NT team. I wanted Dybala and Icardi to play with Messi up front. But at the moment, I would prefer above line up.

  18. Some might disagree here. Does anyone recall the NT not able to win matches or failing to score goals in Messi’s absence under Sabella?

    Just food for thought on the best tactics for the NT.

    • Sabella had a clear picture what he wanted He was a sharp coach, One of the best we had since Pekerman, He was a defensive minded coach but defense wins matches, It was his tactics that took us to the Final, He had a solution for problems.

      But has to say Sampaoli is a Coach we can trust after Sabella, Tata & Bauza were like a Horror Movie, So Scary. They are the main reasons for our suffering now. Had they both tried some new midfield players & defenders we would have had options. Sampaoli with in his 8 matches has already tried so many variants in all positions. Atleast he is trying.

      • “defense wins matches, It was his tactics that took us to the Final, He had a solution for problems.” I disagree with this point.
        if argentina played germany befor final 2014 argentina would have out of the world cup.this is not sabella’s excellency that argentina was in the final,it was luck favor that argentina not faced germany befor final.

        • You got to be kidding. Because some of you guys with short memories forgot that Germany struggled against inferior teams like Ghana and Algeria. And they were only able to beat Argentina in the final after the team gassed out. Please get your facts right.

          • I don’t have any problem with you and don’t want to quarell with you.most of the time i like your comment.but in sabella’s matter i disagree with you.

            ” Because some of you guys with short memories forgot that Germany struggled against inferior teams like Ghana and Algeria.”
            thanks for remembering and proving that to beat germany you need to attack.sabella is totally weak minded and germany made sabella frigthen as well as force him to run into the back door.sabella was not brave enough to attack germany.

        • Well Holland was having a great time in the World Cup we survived them, Even against Germany we was good, But cant take the fact that Sabella was great coach.His 4-4-2 in Final was really Good.

          We cant say luck was only factor. Well the draw was favorable surely, Had we didn’t faced England, Sweden, Nigeria in 2002 World Cup would we have won that World Cup, Because that was a fantastic Team, Sometimes we need little luck too to win a tournament like the World Cup.

          (Well Its different persons different opinions by the way)

  19. #3 defense is high risk. Sampa need to rethink about his defense and strategy. Mid has improved a lot but still need a more dynamic Playmaker. overall player combination still under progress but unfortunately time is limited. Sampa have to fix the playing scheme and plan , can’t accept experimental with trial and error anymore

  20. I largely agree with Kidulthood.
    Usually I don’t post line-ups, but this time…
    4-4-2 if all below are fit.

    Caballero
    Musacchio, Otamendi, Funes Mori, Rojo
    J. Correa, A.Fernandez, Messi, Lanzini
    Aguero, Icardi

    BTW, Maradona posted stats that compared him with other coaches and wants back in…

  21. The bottomline is we are in no shape at all for the WC at this moment! If we don’t improve massively, we will head towards a great humiliation! A lot would depend on the WC groups draw on 1st Dec. We are in pot 1. Pot 2 has some really tough teams – many of which can beat us. Pot 3 has some tricky teams who would give us tough time as well. Pot 4 is the only pot where almost all teams are beatable!

    Here’s the group simulator: http://ultra.zone/2018-FIFA-World-Cup-Group-Stage-Draws

    On a different note, I strongly feel the time for excessive experimentation is over. Sampa should identify a core set of 14-15 players & stick to them. Pizzaro & Lanzini should be in his plans, as per their current form!

    • It’s not time to worry about opponents now. The good thing is no team looks invincible at this point. No team looks scary to me. Wirld Champions Germany were almost beaten at home by a what is largely a second string France. Spain were held by the same Russia that Argentina had on the ropes the whole match. I believe will come out of any group even if Spain is in that group.

  22. what a joke this Team is. getting 4 Goals by Nigeria is unbelievable. the good Teams will score 5 or 6. this wc is going to be a nightmare! we have nothing but shit hole Players except messi…what a disaster!! shit Players from a shit argetnine league, shit to mediocre Players from europe…there is shit everywhere! god have mercy and kill us fast!

  23. i watched the match… and again highlights too.. the first half we are move the ball forward quickly.. when we scored two goals.. all the guys are relaxed.. and transition is slow.. and this formation defensive midfielder is key.. he has to win areal duel and put the pass forward quickly.. when banega.. i think nigiria midfielder won the ball and put the ball into wings… then our defense is collapesed… these thing will happen… when we attack… but we forget how to control the game.. when we are in two nill we have to keep the ball and looking for killer pass.. when messi is there he controls the game.. but dybala is got the ball he quickly passed to some one..

    banega is better passer.. but his game reading and defending is week.. when arg 2-1 he should be in the iwobi place.. but instead of that he went to press..

    pizzaro is the choice.. hope sampolli will put him..

    goal keeper should have done better… even rulli cabellero deserved then he is total waste..

    his first touch went into the goal… we played amazingly well in the first half.. especialy second goal… wonderful team goal..

    these things will happen when we attack… but players must understand when to press.. when to defend when to control the match.. lo celso ok.. but lanzini he never loose the ball.. and he will fit that box to box.. and his pressing and intellegent.. will suit..

    hope next friendly line up

    —– rulli———

    ——–mache—————-pizzella—————-otamendi———–

    pavon———-enzo perez————–pizzaro——–lanzini——–acuna——-

    —————-messsi——————-aguero——

    this line up steady our defense alwell as attack…

  24. Ever Banega should be dropped Lanzini is good option he is you fast, dribbler,box to box midfielder.He almost never misplace a pass.
    Lamela is also an option He dribbles just like Messi.He could be the key to break down parked bus type tactics in world cup.Through the middle he is most dangerous.
    I think our defence is good with likes of otamendi,pezzela,rojo,mori,ansaldi ,acuna ,Insua. The problem is slow transition of midfield to attack or to defence.Enzo and Lo Celso needs lanzini ,lamela and nacho alongside.

  25. In the last 2 games Aguero run and worked harder than he used to and the result is him fainting in the dressing room.
    Some think weak people like that can lead us to glory.
    Possession football is risky and we don’t have the players to execute it.
    the way sabella setup the team at the worldcup is our best bet to win a trophy.

    • I disagree.sabella was not the best.defensive football is no longer solution.look at atletico madrid and man city.do you think that man city have better players than atletico.answer is ‘no’.atletico have quality players.but defensive minded simione made atletico so boring.simione lost two ucl final.

    • Some time ago I said that Sabella created a blueprint for the NT. His was the system that was simple to maximise the players at his disposal. It was not only Messi, but Aguero, Higuain, Di Maria and Mascherano, Lavezzi, Palacios were scoring for free. That’s because Sabella understood that his team need to play to his players strength as opposed to an system. Some keyboard coaches are quick to say. “No, Sabella is defensive. The fan 4 attack didn’t work at the WC”, blah blah and more bullshit analysis like that, oblivious to the fact that he even never had a 100% healthy squad at the WC so he had to adapt to what was at his disposal to make sure he win matches.

      Sabella is pragmatic coach. But defensive-minded is not right description. I want someone to show me a coach who played made Argentina play better collective attacking football in the last 20 year than him? Foremostly his way is setting up a team not to lose but win by any which way, was his philosophy. Attacking collectively at speed is the only way to break stubborn defenses. Small teams cannot park the bus the whole match if they encouraged to go forward and lured into the opposition half. Sabella’s team never dominated possession often but always created dangerous chances against anyone. But most importantly one thing all other coaches failed to do is that, under Sabella we never felt Messi’s absence even in the WCQs. For me that was were Sabella’s greatness is defined.

  26. We need these players on the team;

    In

    Rojo
    Garay
    Lamela
    Pizzaro
    Joaquin Correa
    Augusto Fernandez
    Higuain
    Icardi
    Lanzini (out of all the new young players Sampaoli called up recently, he impressed me the most with his ball control, movements and passing)

    Cabellero (despite being a bench player at Chelsea, he is more than ready for the big stage compare to the likes of Marchesín and Guzman)

    Out
    Masche
    Paredes
    Dybala
    Lo Celso
    Kranevitter
    Rigoni
    Marchesín
    Pezzella
    Benedetto

    I like Perotti, Gomez, Insua and Ansaldi.I have no problem with these players. Pavon is still raw, he ran himself into the ground during the first half against Nigeria and left nothing in the tank for the second half.

  27. Look at any of our defenders …they don’t face the opposition shot with open chest!! If a player takes a shot or even an attempt these cowards immediately turn their ass!!! Look at Mascherano or any of them!!! Like that tweeter queen Pique, I can give you 50 pictures of him laying on the pitch in front of….Valdes…Pinto…Ter Stengen ..You just can’t be laying down!!! You are a defender, not a cheap pros*** !!! Soldier’s helmet never falls off their head except when they are dead!!! We need real blood for our team…these guys are coward!!!

  28. Mascherano!!! what a joke..this SOB almost cost us WC..So many times he blunders!! Our team is one trick pony!! Literally one pony. No matter it was a friendly or what these guys must have thick skin!!! Week in week out these mofos embarrassing us like nothing matters ,,,You just can’t let 4 goals behind your faking ballerina ass . faaa ak these mother fakars

    • Clackamas, I agree with you…I have never been embarrassed as I was yesterday. It is really sad that we are cheering for this team, holding up hope and quite often they fail us.

      It is like encouraging a lazy man to fight but in your heart of hearts you know they will get beat

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