Diego MARADONA: “They’ve left MESSI alone”


Diego MARADONA came out defending Lionel MESSI following his retirement from the Argentina National Team.

MARADONA has defended MESSI, saying that they’ve left him alone and that he would like to talk to him. Here’s what he had to say:

“MESSI has to continue with the National Team, he has to continue! They’ve left MESSI alone and I don’t want him to be alone.”

“I want to talk to him: To fight for those who were left alone, from first to last, from SEGURA until VERON.”

“We have to support more those who can help push the team forward and less those which they say have to go. Those who say they (players) have to go, they don’t see the mess that is Argentinian football.”

“The only thing Leo’s comments do are cover up all the disasters in Argentinian football. They put the kid’s face (Messi’s face) to cover up what the AFA has done and today we’re talking about him and not them. And to cover it all, we lost two consecutive finals to Chile. And with all the respect in the world, they aren’t the Netherlands of 1974. And we lost both. The truth is right now, I don’t believe anyone.”

“I have a feeling they just told him: “Go and for the love of God do something to save us.” We were a mess and they left him alone.”


  1. Diego Maradona is correct…there needs to a some changes done to the team for messi..

    1. We need a tactical coach. No offense to Martino..he has got us very close to winning and he has done his best..many a times Argentina were good until quarters..This has changed..

    2. A strong mature midfield is need of the hour…this is the key to everything…messi is a forward with free role..lets get that straight..

    3. We need the calmness and field presence of the Mussachio and Garay in the defense..Otamendi is fine..as CB, but Fumes Mori needs to be on waiting list or used as LB.

    4. Strikers – Enough has been spoken on this forum..i am not going to say anymore..

  2. As I said before Argentina conceded only 9 goals in 19 tournament games, which tells us that defensively Argentina is one of the best.
    Hence I would keep the defense intact for the most part but I would like to bring Garay back because mori is an accident waiting to happen while Garay is the best defender Argentina has since Ayala IMO! I would also like to bench Rojo and try tagliafico in his place. Cuesta did well and I want to see more of him and Ansaldi deserves to be given a real chance with the NT for a change!

    Argentina’s midfield did well in copa but if mascherano does indeed leave then kranevitter is more than capable of taking his place.
    Banega has finally come into his own but if he also wants to leave that leandro paredes deserves a chance to vie for his place.
    Augusto is fantastic and could bring dynamism, experience and grit to the team in Russia.
    Roberto pereyra deserves another chance because like augusto and enzo he can bring that extra physical presence and energy to the midfield.
    While I don’t like to see Lanzini in the midfield because that would blunt the effect of a great attacking player but the kid is so versatile that he could slot anywhere in the midfield or the offense and still do a good job.

    Argentina scored 36 goals in those 19 games, which also shows that offensively the teams is strong but not as strong as they are on paper.
    The alarming stat is the failure to score any goals in 3 finals with extra time, and apart from the WC the team failed to create more than 2 meaningful chances (both of which were messed up by pipita) in both finals against chile even though Argentina played them out of the park in the same damn tournament and managed to beat them in their own home a few months ago in the WCQ.
    All this tells me that Argentina’s fowards have a huge mental hurdle that they can’t seem to surpass so a change is in order.
    So pipita, dimaria and kun need to go, because they have all become unreliable for different reasons and in russia the bench can be as important as the starters.
    It’s time for;
    – Icardi to be given a chance to be argentina’s 9
    – Dybala to be given a chance to be Argentina’s 11
    – Lamela to be given a chance to be Argentina’s 10 (if messi leaves)
    – Correa to be given a chance to be Argentina’s 7
    – Calleri and vietto all deserve a look especially if they go
    and manage to perform in the olympics.
    – perotti is also someone who deserves consideration and while he’ll be
    29 when russia comes around, he is the type of player who could fill
    the shoes of lavezzi or even dimaria.
    – There are other players like ascacibar, Gomez, lo celso, Rigoni whom I
    had the pleasure of watching in the primera and they look need to be
    monitored because in 2 years they could be ready to step up.

  3. Brothers ,

    I know I’m going to get a lot or flak from a lot of people here for saying this but I would like to forgive Higuaín for the blunders he’s made. I know his mistakes have largely cost us the glory but that guy always gives his all for the NT unlike Di María and Agüero. He doesn’t have fitness issues and present himself in the best shape always barring one season where he looked over-weight. He’s been in fine form in this Copa too and still can be a very good bench substitute for a guy like Icardi or Calleri.

    I appeal to all you brothers that pl forgive the chap. He’s in a inner turmoil and he knows that history won’t be kind to him. But we are Argentina fans who always support our boys – in thick & in thin. Pl forgive him.

    • I agree. Its not his fault. He got shit service most of the copa and not a single good pass or cross all final. The team collectively did not create danger, we all know what pipita can do if you give him a few chances a game, onw does not beat goal records as a flop. 1 shot, which he made himself and one miss is no reason to retire him. He should no longer be a starter, but we need him on the reserves.

      • he has to go, while i agree the service was shite for him some times you only get 1 chance in a game and he had that and missed again. why have him on the bench as it would get even less service.
        remember this is 3 finals for him 3 misses and no goals, why keep him?

  4. Most of the guys here don’t really understand where Maradona is coming from when he criticized Messi then backed him up to stay in the team. Argentina is in Maradona’s blood, and the national team success is his everyday meal…..He wants the team to win a tournament after 23 years of course…..His statement that Messi lacks personality and leadership qualities meant to urge Messi to lead the team confidently, to provoke him hoping that Messi would prove him wrong and beat Chile. Maradona said on multiple occasions that Messi surpassed him in the football world and he does things that he couldn’t do when he was at his age (that was back when Messi was 23 years old). Maradona’s motive of all this was to get the team organized, work on their weaknesses, and kick the Chileans’ butt in the final….that was his way to provoke players in every tournament thinking doing that will make them defiant to his comment and perform better or exceed expectations……Of course Maradona knows that Tata’s tactics have flaws, and winning depends primarily on him, but in this culture criticizing the boss is not wise, so Maradona went to send a message to a younger second leader (Messi) to help the team winning.
    Maradona has a big heart, and he’s not the one who gambles against the national team especially when both of his two beloved ones: Messi and Aguero in it. He wants Messi back because Maradona wants the team to win world cup 2018 and he will be the first one dancing if that happens.

  5. More than 47,000 people will attend a rally this Saturday in Buenos Aires, and try to persuade Leo to rethink his decision of leaving the national team. {Mundo Deportivo}

  6. Istiaque,

    still without evident effect. Why Banega hadn’t a good shot in final. A breaking pass.
    But the worst is what I talked: mentality.
    It’s like stigma that paralise you every next final.

    “still in their mother’s wombs”.
    I will always referring to Bielsa team of youngsters from 2004. Check their age. And that was perfect machine. YOu need a bit experience and far more eager, freshness, will to fight. Banega has part in all these lost tournaments. Yesterday Messi and Biglia lost penalty but just one year ago it was Banega and Higuain. Banega stupid own goal in 2011… Must add Tevez and Di Maria, Aguero for another reason. And we have all these cursed generation. Banega had enough chances. If you give him a chance too much he will probably failed againl like Higuain.
    It’s rather Pasore deserves for one more because Copa in CHile it was his first and last tournament. WC 2010 and Copa this year he was nothing important. I don’t know why people treat him as a part of that lost generation. He had just one chance as far (and was not so bad in CHile) not like Banega.

      • NEar to that of Ghostdeini:






        right now

        and in near future I think we may add: Messi (must take some rest), Pezzella, Ascacibar (I believe he will be better successor of Masche than Kranevitter), Correa, Paredes, Calleri, Salazar, Cervi, Lo Celso

          • Istaque, what are you talking about? Where’s problem?
            It’s the same position as Messi. It’s just nominal when he is so movable like Messi. So Dybala or Icardi and not both? No, nothing like that.

          • But he is never as mobile like Messi. Messi did not start his career as a forward. he was a RW. He played in RW from 2005-06 to 2008-09 season. Thats a lot. Dybala have been playing in Italy for how many 3/4 years now. He always played as a forward. Just saying. And he is no Messi, never looked like that fast, agile or that good finisher.

            You can always play him on the forward position in a 4-4-2, or as a RF in a 4-3-3…but never as a winger in a 4-2-3-1.

      • Dear Istiaque,

        I saw so much of DYbala last season. He introducing the ball from deep midfield a lot, from DM line. The position as above (RF) will be his most normall nominally. At least if no Messi on the pitch. The problem will be set up Dybala, Messi and Icardi when Messi go back. But to play with Messi and Dybala is enticement irresistible.

        • I am always very enticed by 3-4-3…it has width, midfield everything. But it requires a lot of practice and time to gel. So I don’t think its a good formation for national team where players don’t play with each other.

          On the other hand, a 4-3-1-2 is a very very narrow formation. You need very good fullbacks (not like Rojo or Mercado)as well as your midfielders (the 3 CMs) to provide the width. So it is also a very risky formation. If this formation is implemented poorly, it looks really pale and without any creativity and flair. But I believe we have exactly the players bar the fullbacks for playing that formation.

          I would play it like this – (I am excluding Masche because he will be 34 in 2018)


          Ansaldi Otamendi Garay Tagliafico

          ….Parades Kranevitter Lanzini


          ……….Dybala Icardi

    • You know for a fact that Bielsa’s case was a little different right? He was forced to play with those youngsters because lots of oldies retired after the 2002 world cup.

      What Bielsa did was crazy. He isn’t called crazy for no reason. He started Mascherano and Lucho Gonzales in Midfield flaked by Zanetti and Sorin. And I also remember that we also lost that final on Tie-breaker. SO no…their mentality was also WEAK. They were also CHOKERS, couldn’t DELIVER when it mattered.

      This is our problem. We want our midfielder to do ONE job. one particular job. Like if someone is defending, let him defend and if someone is attacking, let him attack only. Thats not healthy at all. If Xavi or Iniesta were Argentine you would have said …”look at their contributions, they both have no SHOTS on target. They didn’t have one single ASSIST in the match. And we would have thorough them away…because they are not flashy enough like an attacking midfielder or Pitbull like a Defensive midfielder.

      At current form, Pastore does not even deserve a place in our squad. And in long term also, he does not merit a place in the starting line-up or in the squad. He is an attacking midfielder, not a proper midfielder. Whenever he and messi played together Leo had to stay behind him — BEHIND HIM to get the ball. Now tell me, in the presence of a midfielder why a forward will have to get behind a midfielder to get to the ball? Banega was doing that, because mascherano and Biglia do not know how to do that. Augusto was helping Banega before the final…but since he was not there in final, Banega had to play too deep and messi got disconnected.

      • Istiaque,

        That team of Bielsa played great. And in final great too (not like poor games against Chile). You must rewatch that game again. Nothing crazy in that strategy. It worked well.
        That team deserves by his play more for title than team last years.

        “And I also remember that we also lost that final on Tie-breaker. SO no…their mentality was also WEAK. They were also CHOKERS, couldn’t DELIVER when it mattered”.

        Where from this conclusion? Non sequitur. Chokers?! Nah, none of this kind. Just a bit more experience, It’s not mentality problem.
        Until we don’t remove Higuain, DI Maria, Aguero, Banega, Biglia the mentality of losers still will be there. Do you know what Messi needs to regain confidence in win? He need to see new faces. Players who give him new believe, players who will not remind him that losts. Banega is one of them.

        Istiaque, you realle think that we lost just because lack of one player (Augusto)? It’s naive. CHile is better team. It’s monolit with character. Player who was out for lost final is always a naive excuse and pretext to build new founding myth of new team. Before I heard something like that: “We lost final because lack of Di Maria” or “we lost final because Messi and Aguero had played too far from each other”. We know today thay both statement are false…

        • I am all for removing everyone, except MAscherano, Messi, Banega, Otamendi and May be Mercado.

          You cant just field every 23 years old and call it a national team. There must be some balance. Not too old, not too young. Balance.

      • Pastore is just one option. There’s no necessity in modern footbal for classic playmaker at all. I just want to protest against including Patore to “lost generation”

  7. More than psychological issue of players, the issue is with coaches.
    Sabella : Philosophy was to not concede even if you dont score. He is the same coach and the most overrated one to whom the players had to demand change of strategy midway through a world cup game. In QF we won because of individual brilliance and not bcos of his tactics. In SF it was a roll of dice which was a penalty shootout. The most boring match of the worldcup with both teams outdoing the other in playing defensive. In the final same strategy and we had chances due to Germany mistakes and not what we created. Belief is Messi or Higuain/Aguero will do some magic. There was no consistent way of playing through his tenure

    Martino: Both the finals he became a Sabella. Dont concede even if you dont score. Both the finals Chile had better chances bcos we played to our weakness and not strength which is attack. To cover up a shaky defence add more defensive players in midfield. The gap in yesterday’s final between Messi, Higuain and the rest of the team stood out. The result was 46% possession. The reality is DiMaria was made to play defensively when he can’t hold play. He can only counter attack, that is his main skill. Being injured one slot was wasted. Biglia,Mascherano plus 4 central defenders ( They parked themselves and hardly moved beyond our half). With this formation you will get a chance or two at the max. We just had one chance due to Chile mistake and in the end Messi tried to setup Aguero which was a difficult chance.

    I can tell you Suarez, Ronaldo and the like have also missed one on one in matches. I know the unfortunate part for us was Higuain was the person in 2 matches missing one on one. But everyone needs to understand in a game where the striker and Messi needs to fight to get a ball, their energy is used up and they are humans. No excuse for the misses but if everyone feels you will get only one chance and that need to be taken, we will fail again. The point is as a team there has been no balance and due to individual brilliance we reached 3 finals.

    Everyone talks about Messi with Barcelona. The point with Barcelona is they have a philosophy which does not change because it is a final. And they consciously try to get a good back up for every role.

    The point also folks need to understand is all these tournaments are of short duration and the consistently changing coaching strategy stresses the players as we move towards final. They are humans and have limits in terms of physical ability.

    The day we play to our strengths and continue with the same strategy for a period of time the probability of delivering will be higher. Get the right strategy and the right players, then we can think of winning. Otherwise all of us will be trusting Messi will deliver and if he doesnt talk trash about him. Just because we have Messi we have made it to 3 finals. In the era of Batigol, Riquelme and Redendo we failed to deliver. We have a very average and imbalanced team which is the core of the issue. Coupled with the prejudices of the coaches we will always be there and one day the lady luck needs to smile on us like in 1986 to win a tournament.

    • Well all I can say is that with Sabella as defensive as you’ve labelled him, his team made more than 3 chances every game. If you judge Sabella with the squad of injured players at the World Cup, it’s like making a conclusion on Maradona’s ability from Italian 90, when he was carrying an injury.
      Or maybe you never watched the WCQS or the friendies. Even the players

      Please give Sabella a break. He is not the greatest coach in the world, but in the Messi era no coach has done better than him for the NT. If Sabella was still around we could be Champions by now.

  8. Since yesterday I have convinced myself that Messi’s decision was just out of frustration and he will be back for sure. But now somehow honestly I am getting Afraid. Did he actually settled his mind that he won’t play with Argentina any more?

    Football without Messi never going to be the same. Hope he will make a comeback. Eagerly waiting for some official comments about this.

    Fans are looking for his comeback, football world is begging his comeback. Still if he sticks to his point, then honestly nothing to say. I will rather cheer for Cristiano Ronaldo.

    Eagerly waiting for some news.

  9. According to Argentina official Tata Martino and his coaching staff will be back to work tomorrow with ‪#‎Rio2016‬ their next task

    Is this is TRUE?

    With Tata we are going no were. Players like Messi and Mascherano decided to quit but not Tata Martino.

    Did you see any difference in Copa 2015 Final Vs Copa 2016 Final?

    Actually there was nothing. Argentina started well then Chile went hard, committed fouls whenever we have the ball, allowed no time to settle us, Messi was tightly marked and Chile looked bright in attack, Tata decided not to lose (rather than winning) and Chile was happy with that as they knew in shoot out they will win.

    This is why Tata must go. He learn nothing from his past failure. He looks good only when opponents allowed us to play our game and whenever they unsettled us he remains clueless.

    Trust me with Tata as our coach we might beat Spain, France, Belgium, Portugal etc BUT we will struggled to defensive European teams like Iceland, Austria etc forget about Italy. He is good for nothing. He must need to go.

    For Olympic it’s OK, but for senior team no way he should remain our coach.

  10. Just wandered two days as if I am the only creature in the world. Life at its most lowest point. Felt that the last copa loss will be the most painful but in reality every loss is much more painful than the previous one. Feel that we don’t know the art of being happy. May be Marcos Rojo knows more about that. Next month he will be moving to a pub and have fun with a blonde n brunette with a playboy smile n enjoy his life. We here talk n cry about that red card for years.

    We all begged for Dybala. Martino took injured Pastore who never played a single minute. Almost two months time is there between copa n olympics. Our coaches are so so adamant and usually the coach will pay the price but here almost all the players are paying the price esp Messi. Next if Tata continues he will again ignore Dybala for friendly n will bring him for last 10 minutes in a crucial qualifiers.

    Our wing backs sucks. Mercado is descent but not adventurous enough to give results. He is not Zabaleta ( in his young days ) or Dani Alves. Beausejour played a big part in chile success. Both our wing backs were quiet most of the tournament apart from rare flashes. Rojo always lacks discipline. Anytime he can be red carded. Not at all a surprise in the final he was send off. Cuesta seems more disciplined. But as usual Rojo will continue as our left back.

    The surprise is other nations are able to find people like Sampaoli or Pizzi or even Pekermen but our beloved AFA is living as those people never exists. If Chile is ready to spend a lot for Pizzi or Sampaoli but AFA is not giving the already much lesser salary for Martino for seven months that sums up everything. If this situation continues how we can expect that we will win something. Last World cup Germany build a new world for their players in Brazil.

    Maria, Aguero, Higuain … how much hope n how much disappointment. Maradona was right Messi was left alone in the most crucial times. We are slowly allowing a losing mentality to surface to our subconsciousness where as Chile is believing that their next destination is conquering the world. It won’t be a surprise if they do so.

    The body language of our players in the final is totally opposite to that in the semis. Just within 20 minutes I felt we lost just because Messi showed some fear in his face. Fear of losing. Playing for winning is one thing and playing for not losing is another thing. For the first time I feel we handled Chile in the first game without Messi much better but in the final all were carrying some fear unfortunately and undeniably that is infected from Messi. If Messi loses his spirit it transfers to the entire team. Fear prevented Creativity from Messi and it expaned to the whole team.

    The best thing we can do is just remain idle for a month. Don’t try for any conclusions. Just set only one goal. Qualify for the world cup. That should be the reasonable mission. Don’t set too many goals. Bring people like Veron, Ayala or Zanetti to management n bring a more tactical hard working coach like Sampaoli ( sevilla is lucky ).

    Messi.. this too will pass. Everything pass. Expectation blocks creativity. Setting the target kills creativity. Play for fun. There is no difference really if the ball goes above the post or below the post. Drop the efforts to win. Enjoy your playing. We love your creativity not your results. You are already a winner. Don’t try to win hereafter. That’s why you are missing. Let our team qualify for the world cup without you n start your dancing from our first match in Russia.

    More bonded to blues than ever..

  11. Banega must go too. He did nothing in the final and he has also mentality of loser. First of all we must renew our psychology by cleaning players who don’t believe in theirselves in win. Banega is among them. We need new mantality warriors not contaminated with mentality of losers.

    • I respectfully disagree. He was the only midfielder in our roster who has the idea of how to be a proper Central Midfielder. The others are either defensive or attacking. We need two way midfielders and not the guys who are still in their mother’s wombs.

  12. Vamos Argentina. In these difficult times, lets all pray that the eccentric genius and best footballer of all times convinces the second best footballer of all times to stay for the sake of ARGENTINA,for the FANS and for the beautiful GAME. I think these are more important factors than the stupid and corrupt officials of the AFA.

  13. Since the fateful penalty kicks, I’ve posted twice here – the first, a quick FISH, and the second, a in disbelief and in denial comment filled with the excuses I could think up of.

    I had decided to go to work that day (8am in Singapore) instead of taking leave and staying home to watch as it had served me well for the match against the U.S. (I was smiling like a lark that morning on reading that Messi had curled in the free kick, 4 nil) and I wanted more of the same. No wearing of jersey in front of TV or computer.

    It was not to be. In a meeting that FISHing morning and I kept shaking my head as I silently read the live posts here on Mundo and on Livescore. Wtf. Dejavu. Couldn’t believe what I was reading. Hadn’t even seen much or any if at all spite and venom and disappointment and complains that were so familiar in the past two competitions but had been absent thus far on this one. Go find that day’s posts and see the live comments during the match – not passing, not talking, Di Maria, Higuain, Aguero,blah blah blah. Same old shit again. Then Chile’s red card. Ok good. Then read about jostling and pushing by the players. Oh shit. Oh shit. Then Rojo red card. Wtf. Oh shit. Not again. When we went in tied and goalless, I was thinking and I’m sure many of you had an inkling of that, oh shit here we go again feeling. As the match wore on, from reading my handphone under the table at the meeting, I began reading my handphone openly in my work cubicle. As the match went into penalties and as the reaults of the penalty kicks unfolded, I wanted to faint there. WTF. WTH. How can it be? Once twice thrice!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Boss came in for discussion and I was soon occupied for the rest of the day. Refused to read any news or watch any YouTube replays and highlights. A bit dumbfounded still during lunch before FISHing England supporting boss (ha! Now that it has happened, two FISHing Brexits! Take that you shit!) told me that M and M had announced they were hanging their international boots. My balls dropped. Then again who can blame them? Had a sneak peek of video showing Messi tearing Aguero comforting him and with Chilean players in background. I said enough.

    When back to office, was occupied with work, had the niggling feeling something was not right. Driving back home after work, I thought to myself, hey, I’m actually handling it pretty well. Maybe it’s because I’ve become more experienced with losing at finals and have learnt how to cope. After all, the first time is always the most painful right? (No, not talking about sex but about the final of the World Cup, the climax of all football competitions).

    I was completely wrong. It seems like the loss this time round is the most painful for me. When I settled down in bed, I could only allow myself to read Mundo. Read complains after complains, finger pointing after finger pointing, Higuain, Di Maria, Aguero, Biglia, Tata, Brazilian ref, Maradona, AFA and so on. Some people moved on and start playing Football Manager again… We should call up this, what do you think of this, we should change the AFA and coach, etc. I say good on you guys. You guys can move on so fast. I’m envious. Me? I still can’t bring myself to watch the lowlights of the match. Dunno when will I ever be able to. I wanted to talk, to lament and share my misery. Searched for some Argentina fan club in Singapore but couldn’t find any. Where are all of you?

    I was only 7 and had started watching soccer when I saw Maradona lift the cup. I was slightly older when we won the Olympics. I thank God for being able to watch these because I don’t think there will ever be another time when we will be champions again. When M and M will ever be champions with Argentina again. Sigh…

    A sad fan.

  14. Messi should retire from pointless friendly games which are being organized by the AFA for cash grabs resulting in mindless travel. Let the youngsters battle it out in the friendlies and our proven talent (provided they have not retired) incorporated with them during competitive fixtures.

  15. Just waiting to hear that Martino has resigned and Di Maria, Sergio Aguero, Gonzalo Higuain have all retired… but sadly nothing of that sort…
    Whereas our beloved 2 heros have gone…
    Argentina is Hungary and Poland in the making… stem the rot… AFA needs to be dissolved and an alternate Football Argentina needs to be formed…

  16. Oops… it looks like Luis Segura has taken back his resignation… he is at the helm once again…
    disaster after disaster these 2 days or so… what else… need to brace

  17. Is Carlos Bilardo still ruling the roost in AFA?… need to first kick that dumbo out…
    Luis Segura has now resigned… but whats the use Tinelli is already gone…
    Sampaoli just went and joined Sevilla
    Has Hugo Tocalli completely quit coaching?… Can somebody cox him out… if then will he be a better coach… but looks like most of his wards are all retired.

  18. Some players turn up for their respective Countries more than their employer Clubs… for e.g., Klose, Muller, etc.
    Whilst others are just the opposite… for e.g., Di Maria, Aguero etc.

  19. After the Biglia miss I felt anger. Yet another trophy slipped through our hands. Will we ever win anything again? A day later the perspective has changed somewhat.

    Messi did what he could. He was constantly surrounded by several Chilean players when he had the ball. That meant several other players were unmarked. Messi could not reach them. Why? Because next to Pipita only Banega helped offence. All others stayed back. In Barca he gets support from Iniesta, Rakitic and others. In the national Sunday there was hardly anybody. Of course we lack someone like Iniesta ever since Aimar, Veron and Riquelme retired. Kranevitter, Biglia, Augusto and even absent players like Perez, Peyrera and Parades simply aren’t the type we need. We lack quality players like Iniesta, Kroos or Modric. I have yet to see them coming through the ranks of Argentine clubs.

    Defence conceded few goals. That is a good sign. However we did play average sides like Panama and Bolivia. Against tougher sides we probably will concede with these players. Imagine we played Germany last weekend… Otamendi, Funes Mori, Rojo and Mercado are simply not up to the level of Bonucci, Barzagli and Chiellini (the Juventus BBC are world class).

    We do not learn. A few examples:
    1) When Diaz was sent off we could have outplayed Chili. We did not. Rojo was just as stupid as Ortega in 1998. A numerical advantage was cancelled out.
    2) Martino took off Banega, the only one that was playing very well. He let the very disappointing Biglia on the field.
    3) We do not play as a compact team, we do not defend and attack together. The lines are too far apart.
    4) We wait too long with subs. Lamela should have come on much sooner. Once the opponent is a man down, bring an extra attacker to put pressure on them.

    With the AFA in shambles and all the players withdrawing from the team, we will have to fight hard to get to the WC 2018. Gonzalo already outlined a new line up for us (thanks Gonzalo). If we reach the WC 2018 Messi might come back (as did Diego after his retirement in 1994). With younger and more hungry players around him (Dybala, Icardi, Tagliafico, Lanzini etc.) he might see a last chance to win the most prestigious trophy of them all. If we continue with the current crop of players Messi will, like Redondo before him, not return for the WC.

    • Richard… cant write better…
      We need killer instincts of Thomas Muller and Sergio Ramos… they give 110% when needed most… we just have a single Javier Mascherano…
      Its sad to see Di Maria took millions from cristiano to pull down Messi and inturn Argentina each time… hope this buffalo never gets into NT anytime… whats the use… he plays all by himself and never passes… he calls injured on every tournament thus robbing a fitter players space…

      • I agree. Easily most skilled after Messi. Also the weakest mentally. Horrible ego and decision making. Only does well ubder the strictest of coaches and high conpetition for starting spots (Mourinho). Lamela is a much better option at this point.

        Tata had chemistry with Gaitan and Lamela an Agusto.. He flopped it.. Injuries didnt help

  20. I was afraid for some time, my teenage idol is ageing, like Pele. He said all the wrong things while our players were playing in a tournament, putting more pressure on them. Now, he is backing them. Incredible.

    I hope Messi dont change his decision immediately. Let him come only some time before to 2018 WC, ideally towards the end of 2017. And as I always mentioned here, somebody please ask De Maria to retire from NT. We should all give him a send off.

  21. So first Diego says that messi has no personality and is no leader and now he’s saying that messi should stay and lead the team! Jesus maradona really needs to put a sock in it and stop trying to be relevant.
    With that said I do agree with him on the fact that Lio must stay because he’s served the NT with distinction and I honestly believe he can win the big prize if certain adjustments are made to the team.

    Argentina has played 19 tournament games (7 WC games and 12 Copa) and conceded just 9 goals (that’s 1 goal in 2 games) while scoring 36 goals (almost 2 goals per game), however the team failed to score in 3 finals (with extra time) and in all these finals pipita fails to bring it while kun and Dimaria played while unfit or got injured in the process.

    So all of thise tells me that Argentina has (contrary to popular opinion) a great defense and a good offense but certain starters crumble under the pressure of the finals.
    So I think the current defensive line is good enough for Russia but the addition of Ansaldi and Tagliafico could bolster Argentina’s fullback supply while Garay must return to the team because Mori is not reliable. I know he’s impressed alongside otamendi but Mori is quite error prone (almost gifted vidal a goal in the opening game and it was his stray pass that led to venezuela’s goal).
    Musacchio is also a fantastic CB but unfortunately he has become very injury prone and I don’t think he can be relied on so I think Cuesta is one that should be seriously looked at because he did very well when called upon in copa and pairing him with tagliafico would make Argentina almost impenetrable at the back.

    The midfield is looking good at last, with Augusto proving to be the missing piece and his absence from the final was sorely felt while Banega has finally begun to live up to the potential he showed in 2007.
    If MAscherano does indeed stick to his retirement plan (remember he said the same thing last year after the copa loss only to change his mind) I think kranevitter can step in and fill the chief’s considerable shoes.
    I also think that Lanzini and Paredes should be given a chance because they can both add an extra dimension to the midfield and they performed wonderfully for their respective teams last season.
    Roberto Pereyra and enzo perez should be given another chance because they can provide a certain level of dynamism that our team has lacked in the past.

    Finally we cone to the true weak link of this team…the offense (never thought I’d say that). Pipita, kun and Maria all need to be shown the door. In higuain’s case he shouldn’t have been given another chance after failing to perform in 2 previous finals but alas maybe it had to be “3 strikes and you’re out” thing with him!
    Kun and Dimaria are excellent players but due to their continued fitness issues they are unreliable and said will only get worse as they get older.
    Time to bring in Dybala, Icardi and Correa into the fold because they will all be keen to prove themselves and they don’t carry that monkey (namely the need to win a senior title) on their back.

    Lastly regarding messi, I hope to dear god that he reconsiders his decision (I think he will) but I don’t think messi is blameless in this whole scenario because like kun, dimaria and pipita he tends to underperform in finals and he needs to search within himself as to why this happens because by now it is clear that it has become a psychological issue with him when playing a finals game with the NT.

    • I agree as always with you.

      I would love to see:

      merc..Ota..masch..tall good heading lb not rojo. No funes.

      Perreira Krane Lamela

      …… messi

      …. Dybala .. icardi

    • Now Maradona changed his stand. He is like that. He will come out openly with criticism during the big tournaments as he did during the last world cup and 2015 copa. This year in the very beginning of the Copa he openly criticized Messi on his captaincy ability. The day before the final he gave more pressure on Messi and company saying don’t come without wining the trophy. Now he is supporting Messi. Actually if he has anything this is the time to come openly. Now he will wait until the next world cup matches. I am a fan of Maradona but now his attitude does not serve Argentinian football.
      One the team is selected and the team is preparing and participating in a big tournament they (senior and veteran footballers and AFA should support them until they get a feeling that all the nation are with us.
      But unfortunately in the case of Argentina unlike other countries it has nevder been the case

  22. maradona is a strange man. he swang public opinion against messi prior to Copa, put messi under pressure. now he is supporting Messi after a series of calamities.

  23. Messi will return. I have no doubt about this. He still has 5/6 years football left. I didn’t see him crying after World Cup final loss, I didn’t see him crying after Copa 2015 loss but he looked completely devastated yesterday. It was meant a lot to him. He was probably in his form with NT this time. But this break would definitely help him.
    We are just an argentine fan but it’s more than 24 hours but still struggling to the digest this lose now just think what might be going on those players mind. 3 final loss in 3 years is very very tough to accept. With 3 key players already retired, few more thinking on that, AFA supremo resigned, Tata thinking to step down, yesterday there was bomb threat in AFA head-quarters…so in short AFA is in complete mess. I honestly believe these might be the sign of better things coming in their way. Changes are must. Such a great footballing nation and still trophy less for last 23 years (hunt will remain for next 2 years) it’s really hard to believe. I am sure Messi and Argentina will bounce back.

    • like you im devastated and those pics of messi are really breaking me. what a nice humble guy who does not deserve the bad luck the finals have brought for us.

  24. One of the rare wise comment from Maradona.

    May be that Messi cry changed him for all…(Who won’t share his feelings? Even many Brazil fans cried along with him…They were planning to humiliate us. But Messi tears changed the plan…)

  25. My dream is that Messi will not only come back but also play for Argentina until 2023 Copa America when he is 36. However, he can retire if we win the 2022 WC. 😉 If he keeps playing as a playmaker, he can easily play at a top level until he is 35 or 36. Pirlo is a perfect example of that.

  26. Messi has to stay, without any doubt. You down there in argentina (i am in europe-croatia) probably will never know how much influence in football history is created by little wizard. Surly he is greatest of all time. But we have to leave him play and also dont push him with all kind of pressure. Thats the key. In football like in all others things in life if you do something just for joy without concernes about trophys you will give your best. We have to find young ambicious trainer, introduce young players paired with messi, and what is more important, try to find winning mentality in them. The price will then surly come, without any doubt.

  27. Finally, more than 24 hours later, I pick up whatever is left of me after yet another emotional catastrophe. Messi must stay, there’s no one like him, Higuain can get the heck out as far as I’m concerned and never come back.

  28. i view this just as emotion as well..he will return surrounding with some new player..he should not retire..no..wrong player should retired..players were singing the same song at the time of the tournament … they should drop out from the team..”injury prone”..”final one on one failure”…that should be retire
    for maradona sympatie..I’m confused with this former one ..when messi in praise and hailed..he appeared as haters..then when messi in slumpy situation he appeard as defend

  29. with maradona being at his back, lionel messi will be back in no time. this is maradona, the best player on planet earth defending the best player from out of this world.

    i say screw others, but messi has to stay.

      • masche is fine, he’s a fighter. but i am not interested in especially higuain and di maria. these two are just the biggest flop in argentina football history. i hope they don’t play in albiceleste shirt anymore. it’s beyond crazy and stupidity if most of people here still believe in this two overrated players.
        we have lanzini in place of di maria and icardi in the place of higuan. i hope to see these both youngsters in the qualifiers round.
        there is a few youngsters from this copa and olympics i want to see next as well:

        and tagliafico also a must in place of rojo.

        which next argentina coach now has the balls to call up this players???

        • we did warn them about di maria and hig but some people told us other wise, sadly its not one of those things I’m happy to be correct about.

          • yeah… we did that since pre wc 2014, and they’ve been called us what? yup, trolls and all.
            we gave higuain more than a chance, but he still blew it when it matter most; the final. he screwed up 3 times in 3 finals, that’s how sucks higuain can be. he fucked up 3 times, and mundo still praise him as our best choice for number 9, i don’t get it.
            di maria, he is nowhere near to be the best player ever. just a crap club player who shall kiss cr ass forever.

      • You guys are retarded. Higuain missed the shot at the wc final, yes fully a flop there, but vs belgium he got us past him as MVP, thr Copa was a forced pass by Lavezzi and sliding poor angle shot, not his fault. Pk miss, everyone misses them, diego did, messi did.. Ya flops. As for this final, he got one chance.. Just obe chance all game, and he did the right thing, stole it and beat the last man then dribbled the keeper who came out very well and he chipped him, missed the post by very little, its a miss, but not a flop.. Forwards.. All fucking humans need about 3 chances to equal a goal, and that is considered world class. So yes, we should bring in youth now, but Higuain is not a scapegoat. The team created almost no scoring opportunities.. Collectively.. Thata a fault of Tatas defensice formation and DiMaria unfit and playing like an ego nut superman. I wonder if any of you ever played a competitive game in your lives.

  30. Apparently the presidant of argentina promessed messi a afa reshufeling for him to get back i see this happening i dont want macherano to retire either

  31. Messi in his so called retirement speech sounded like powerplay to me,i hope he demands good coach for our sake(long suffering fans).i don’t want see higuain,aguero,di maria ever again.i hope they end up playing for a third division team in war zone country.

  32. that is Maradona I know, Brave heart as always. Messi must stay, he was our best player nations would die to have half of him. Lets support our Messi.

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