“Thank you my friend Leo MESSI”
Those are the words from Argentina’s most capped player Javier ZANETTI (via Twitter @javierzanetti) as he shows his gratitude towards Lionel MESSI for giving him a signed Argentine shirt and a ball.
However, none of these items will go in ZANETTI’s memorabilia collection. Instead the Internazionale Vice President intends to sell them on eBay and all the proceeds will go straight into the PUPI Foundation (which is run by ZANETTI himself).
Both players are well known for doing charitable cause through their respective foundations. Apparently it was ZANETTI who seeked for some assistance from MESSI to help young kids back in Argentina to which Leo responded with this great gesture.
Here’s hoping that both items will fetch a good number and put a smile on some less fortunate kids. Bravo to both players!
Scrolling down the text I see I caused a small stir with my remark on modern fullbacks. A short explanation seems to be necessary.
For decades fullbacks were static players that defended, blocked wingers and cleared as many balls as possible, into the stands if necessary. They only came forward during corner kicks. In the nineties this started to change with players like Cafu who ran and up and down the pitch to assist attack with crosses and shots from distance. Roberto Carlos threw in the swirling free kick.
These days fullbacks not only run up and down the pitch to assist attack and cross balls, they also are technically apt, can dribble past opposite defenders, set up short combinations and are just as skilled as wingers. Bayern Munich, Monaco, PSG and Juve’s Alex Sandro all showed the impact of modern fullbacks. Sadly, I cannot name one Argentine fullback with these capabilities. An explanation for the excellent French situation can be found in the French training system. From the age of 12 talented boys are put together in a boarding school where they stay the whole week and train 3 times per day next to school activities. They play their matches in the weekend and then go home only to return on Monday. Everyone who saw yesterday’s Lyon match or Monaco young bright talents knows what I am talking about. Kid has a point that is all start with our youth system. The past few years the results have not been up to the level of the Pekerman era. That is downright worrying. Players like Dybala gives us hope for the future, but he cannot do it alone. Even Messi could not do it alone. The WC in Russia could be our last chance for a while, although I do not think we stand a chance against Germany or France at this moment.
You are fighting alone and I see why such is the case. No one is saying to replace the whole NT with the youth team. But it is about time to make a few changes and see what will work. There are some clear ones. Romero has done great for NT given the amount of game time he gets. But now Rulli should be tried. One change in defense and mid is required. There is no number 8 in the team now. All are 5s. Forget 10s, we don’t have them anymore. Would love to have a Lucho Gonzalez. Forwards, Dimaria is headless when playing for NT. When Dimaria and Aguero is benched for club they come back hard. At NT their place is secured, they are the untouchable stars, so why would they work hard or apply themselves? Work hard is not only on the pitch but train hard. I doubt these players even train for NT. Including Messi. Bottom line is 3-4 players need to be dropped, no one should be indispensable.
In support of Kid, I have to say we go overboard with our young players. Many of them have not proven anything at top level. Today there is hardly any your player for whom big clubs will splash big money. After Messi is gone, other than Dybala I do not see anyone even getting nominated for a top player award. We make the kids stars too quickly – Oscar Ustari is Buffon, Kranevitter is Mascherano and many more. Let them play, lets see what they can do. But we have to bring them in the fold. I am saying all these at individual level. One can argue German players don’t win individual awards, but with trophies – and that will be totally correct.
Problem is south american players are scattered all over the world. So Brazil and Argentina can never have a group of 5-6 players playing together all year. So these teams rely on individual brilliance. The coach has to create a support system so that these individuals can flourish. Unfortunately, with the best player in the world for over 12 years we have not been able to give him a platform other than Sabella time. Someone like Bauza cannot. Here comes AFA, they don’t even have money to have a good coach.
Anyway, finally, I do not think you need to assemble a team from top clubs in Europe only. I would play a 4-2-3-1 in 2017 with a team like this
Bro I’m not fighting anyone, it’s good not to live in the Mundo bubble for a change. Everyone (or almost everyone) here act like Argentina have the best young players in the world. Dude Lanzini wouldn’t start in any of the top contender world cup teams. Lanzini wouldn’t even start for Mexico let alone Argentina. English game is overrated, I can never be impress with EPL football, the EPL is not world cup winning material league. Spurs can’t even beat Gent over two legs for pete sake, Gent of all teams!! Do you see England even calling up Antonio from West Ham? lol Lanzini is not good enough for Argentina, and he will never get call up any time soon.
Rulli? Nervous Rulli? The guy who had butter fingers at the 2016 Olympic tournament?
Take out Zabaleta, Otamendi, Rulli and, Lanzini.
Is Romero flawless? Hardly
“Lanzini wouldn’t even start for Mexico let alone Argentina”
And I’m going to outbid you: he wouldn’t even start for Belize;)
Banega is very consistent… consistently bad!! and Rojo .. he might be doing okay at man utd as a centre back because he is a natural centre back .. sabella made him play LB because of his height!! Masch can’t be a starter anymore..
Romero took Argentina to their first world cup final in over 20 plus years!!
Oh yeah? I had no clue
“Romero took Argentina to their first world cup final ”
absolute rubbish it was a team effort from many different players at different times during the w/c.
“Would love to have a Lucho Gonzalez” – agreed. One or even two kind of Lucho in midfield, around No.5
Enzo is almost the kind. But we need also someone young. Comes to my mind Alexis Castro of Tigre but nothing more.
And this thing about how ‘’Icardi is playing for a mediocre Inter Milan team yet he still scores goals.’’ Then why the likes of Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern, PSG, Man City, Chelsea doesn’t show any interest in him if he is that good as you people claim? Icardi have a better chance of going to China before moving to any of those clubs. As Maradona said, he is ”traitor.” None of the European top club teams will bring a ”traitor” in their ranks and this is the same with Argentina.
Again and again KidultHood and Csabalala about how week are the clubs in which are playing our contenders for these famous oligarchy of NT. Inter of Icardi too weak, Sao Paolo of Pratto too weak, West Ham of Lanzini too weak, Independiente of Tagliafico too weak. I see the logic very well. According to this every club on the world is too weak excluding Barcelona, Real, PSG, Juventus and Manchester CIty.
So again: somehow Chinese or Russian league is not too weak for Brazil NT. Somehow Sporting Lisboa was not too weak when Rojo was playing there and even Sampdoria bench to call up Romero.
kid: incorrect man.u, chel, Tottenham and the ars have all shows an interest and inquired about icardi but inter would not talk for less the 70 mill euros, neither real.m or barca have been looking for strikers at all in the last couple of years but they will soon and its noted icardi signed a new 5 year with inter and a 100 million euro buy out clause is inserted to stop other teams trying to buy him.
oh and please dont use maradona as a reference for any quotes in your arguments as he is as far from a saint as any one cant be, yes my foot balling hero maradona is a buffoon these days and should we talk about his drug use that cost the n/t x 2, his crap management that cost the team 2010 (he still ranks as the worst manager of all time but bozo is closing in on him), his drug fueled life style, he him self cheated in a marriage many times over and not to mention his life style of prostitute, orgies etc etc so in short its highly hypocritical of maradona to ever be pointing fingers at others.
Pablo, so true, Maradona does not have the moral high ground to criticize anyone for their moral choices whatsoever
Well, if you are (joint) top scorer in the Serie A at 22 and have scored more goals in Italy than Hernan Crespo in his entire stay (Parma, Lazio, Milan) when you are only 23, you do have potential. BTW, Arsenal wanted him a while back.
”New face = New hope?” When Argentina youth teams actually start winning instead of failing to defeat the likes of Honduras, Panama and, Austria at FIFA international youth tournaments then I’ll take them seriously. It’s so pathetic the amount of praise you guys give these average to mediocre players who can’t even control or put passes together. At the end of the day, an Argentina mid with Masche, Biglia/Perez and Di Maria can compete with the likes of Germany-Kroos, Khedira and Reus in any given game compare to the pairing of Lanzini, Perades and Kranevitter. We’re seeing the last great Argentina generation; live, cherish and, love it while you can because after the 2018 world cup it’s back to the dark ages for Argentinean football on the national stage.
For almost two decades Argentina was a laughing stock on the international stage. It’s gotten bad that mediocre players are seen as any good for Argentina supporters nowadays, all they need to do is play for the likes of Leganes or Las Palmas or West Ham. You see Germany or Spain selecting any players from mediocre teams like West Ham, Watfrod, Leganes, Torino, West Brom etc.? No, because these are prestigious teams, that even the young players they select are also playing on the level as the veteran to senior players in their squads. This is not the same with our team. Other than the usual Messi, Masche, Di Maria, Higuain, Aguero, Cabellero, Dybala, and Salvio; how many ”New face = New hope” young Argentinean players we have playing in this season UCL? Better yet, how mnay have Argentina had playing in the last 3-4 season not name the players on my list?
We had and have the best generation to win a world cup and if these guys can’t produce I don’t know who will.
Seeing Paredes against Villarreal is just cringe worthy, no wonder that guy doesn’t play, what he does on the pitch does nothing to help Argentina in midfield because what he is doing the likes of Bilgia, Perez, Augusto and Banega can do it 10X better with more experience.
We have seen the highest level of football this past two weeks in the UCL and not one young establish Argentina Mid or fullback was on display yet we should have untested mediocre players starting for one of the best international teams in world football. No thanks, let the AFA fix their mess and develop proper players before any of these young players can graduate to the senior team. Win the Youth World Cup in South Korea this year and I’ll change my tune on Argentina youth football, until then, it’s the Argentina youth football class of 2001-2008 that matters to me.
“When Argentina youth teams actually start winning instead of failing to defeat the likes of Honduras, Panama and, Austria at FIFA international youth tournaments then I’ll take them seriously”.
I will repeat this again and again: just don’t even try to ignore still and left unsaid the fact of circumstances the Olimpic fail. You are doing this still. And I see this self contradiction when you are blaming AFA for all chaos and lack of profesionalism, especially with youth teams, and on the other hand blaming the youth team totally as if they hadn’t any alibi. Yes, they have. We don’t know how they could do if that team was prepared professionally and long time before. Did you forgot about all the circumstances or you just don’t want to remember. Till the last days we even didn’t know do our team will participate on Olimpic Games. Lack of money and all the things Olarticoechea was talking about after Tournament. Moreover that was our B team at best unlike this Brazil for example. I am not saying that team would won the tournament but taking into account mentioned facts we really do not know what they might reach.
As always you have too much ill will in your estimate.
My “new face = new hope” was misinterpreted by you I think. That means: I was talking about psychological impact for Messi (and the few players that still should stay in NT)of presence few new players around. I’m not talking about particular abilities the new players compared to the old. But in fact I think to indroduce theoretically even less talented player instead much talented famous, jaded, lazy and burn out one would give better results. Given the way there’s no two identical footballers new player himself means sometimes new tactic.
It is really hard to replace the 2001-08 generation. It is not contentious as the results are speaking loudly for the current youth and none are luring the interest of european elites either.
How do you feel when you see Mascharano who is playong as CB for his club regularly dictating the N.T midfield at 33. Nor is Biglia a world class mid. These players are simply wasting the CAM potential and skill of creativity. Peryera was a decent player who lured Juve interest from Udinise,had it not been for Allegri who decided to sell him out favouring Struato and Lemina. Parades is not that far from Biglia who was with Anderlect at his age belaw par comparing to A.S Rome.What worse could happen to the team if the 2 dinasouts are replaced with an alternative mids. We have seen Augusto Maschie Banega playing the best match of the NT in long time in Copa 16. How do you find out this unless the deserving players are given a chance.
One player that people don’t recognize him much for his NT service E. LAVEZZI,overwhelmed even Maria at NT level. Cus he got a chance to prove thanks to the series of injuries that Maria has gone when the team needed him most.Am sure Lavezzi is a great example and had we judged him for his club career; Di Maria is the reason that he was religated to bench at PSG ‘ n eventually his move to China too.
In a nutshell messi generation is the best but it is only him who solely carrying the team. The rest are liablity at best and are not irreplacable atleast at NT,with all due respect to their sparkling club career.
Messi went down to Egypt???
spiritually not a good sign ‘to go down to egypt’ … few will understand what i mean. It is a backslidden state…
we need to come out of egypt and remove egypt from our hearts.
‘Go up to Jerusalem’
Pratto should play and not Higuain
he is scoring every week. The first – nice one
The heading quality reminds me of oliver bierhof and kennet anderson
His overall goalscoring statistics even in Brazil not really impressive. In a much harder league (Italy) was 14/1
Great striker btw but only at this level
I would still prefer seeing Higuain and dybala starting with messi supporting right at the back of them or play from the wing since they’ve built a solid understanding in juve. If you guys watch their games, their communication is becoming almost telepathic nowadays. Pratto can come in if bauza needs a change of plan
It’s sensible reason but since I’m strongly convinced that Higuain will fail again in crucial moment for me none argument is enough good to save him. If Dybala will start on the bench the more Pratto should take place of Higuain. I see in Higuain’s eyes still the same fragility when it comes to more important moments.
pratto is a plan b only, a good old fashioned striker who is not afraid to throw self about at both ends.
their has been some good articles on hig of late and the general consensus is he in the bigger games he is not their taking his chances, “hig need to learn to take his chances in the big games”
what I see now is a player (hig) who is far less Mobil and its a crime icardi is not given a chance, lets be honest hig has always been a great club striker for real.m, nap and juv but when its “squeaky bum time” more of turn then not he vanishes none more then 4 misses in 3 finals.
Oh I totally agree with you on that point @gonzalo. If dybala sits on the bench, pratto should certainly start for us with messi and another attacking midfielder supporting. I wish we had good attacking wing backs in our team that would be able to deliver good crosses for pratto or even ( my personal choice icardi) to attack. Pratto is so consistently deadly with his aeriel ability as you can see in his recent form with even half chances. Another thing I love about him is his bull like work rate. Aguero should never be considered in our starting lineup due to this.
Man, are you robot? Could not you start at least once with something other than numbers Mr.Stats? I know you are Court Buchhalter here but it’s just annoying. At any time I may find respective stststics and don’t need for your footnote. Completly fixated on numbers. It’s not pure mathematic and thanks to God we still watch living man on the pitch. Never know what’s gonna happen.
“Great striker btw but only at this level” – so how it is Pratto scored in qualifiers 2 goals?
If Pratto is better than Higuain in NT these days why not bet on him. Working more than Higuain. So if we must to take players around 30 I would prefer Pratto over Higuain or Aguero. As a new player he is working hard for his place unlike the famous that have guaranteed places. This is clearly.
If Messi will sees around once again the same faces on WC (Higuain, Aguero, Di Maria, Banega, Mascherano, Rojo, Biglia)… he will see face of lost one more time. And the demons will back again. New faces = new hope. But he will not belive one more time till the old faces still are aroud him. No one think about this psychological factor? He need new surroundings. Young faces with eager on them to believe again.
And if you want to be so nitpicking on my comments first check your’s.
“His overall goalscoring statistics even in Brazil not really impressive”
“Great striker btw but only at this level” – you even contradicted yourself. This senteces are absurdal.
If his overall stats are not really impressive how he is “great striker”?
He is not type of goalscorer. Ugly ducking, working ox without grace and still more usfull than Higuain and AGuero.
Great striker on this lower brazil league level, shit striker on Seria A level. Btw you are the one with your statistics, when the theme is Paredes Mr Double Standard, unfortunately Pratto is not polish, he would be a better option instead of big tournaments flop Lewandowski right?
“shit striker on Seria A level” – oh I see, so you are not only Buchhalter, you are also clairvoyant to see how it is with Pratto in Seria A. Very interesting.
Before I’ve brought here for the first time any statistics about Paredes in last comments I was writing many times but only on my personal feelings because stats are good for someone who does not watching matches (like you). So don’t tell me about double standards. The stats about Paredes lack of assists was just to show in a new light some of my doubts about he is really so attack contirution player as people think. I just realized of late he has only 1 assist in Europe and that was some kind of corroboration of my observations and impressions – to a some degree of course.
But please do not write me. When I want to talk about Paredes then I’ll choose Ghostdeini for example. He is also Paredes fan but mature and not infantile one who is blustering about after one goal as if it was final triumph (however he has one little argument more). I prefer bitter dispute with him than complete agreement with unamannerly loudmouth.
Levandowski? What does it matter? What are you babbling about?
Attacking fullbacks are an important factor in modern day football. Look at Monaco, Bayern Munich and Juventus. They are just as good defensively as in attack. Our lack of modern fullbacks could be the differentiator between success and failure.
What is a modern fullback? I don’t really see any of the current crop of fullbacks being better than the likes of Cafu, Roberto Carlos, Zanetti, Lillian Thuram, Lizarazu, Branco etc.
I think Cafu, Roberto Carlos and Zanetti were an exception rather than a rule in their day. Most fullbacks were probably not quite as attacking. Or maybe the definition of ‘modern” stretches back to the 90s.
Lillian Thuram scored two goals that took France to the 1998 world cup final and he was also great for Barcelona going forward..Still don’t get the whole modern fullback thingy!! So what now, Harry Kane is a modern forward compare to Michael Owen?
I repeat, maybe the definition of “modern” stretches back to the 90s. Plus I think there are probably more attacking fullbacks right now than back in the day. You brought up Cafu, R. Carlos, Zanetti, Thuram, Lizarazu. Today we have: Alaba, J.Alba, Florenzi, Sandro, Marcelo, Dani Alves, Darmian, A.Valencia,Kolarov, Bernat, Gaya etc so I think more attack minded fullbacks in general. Some of them are actually converted wingers like Alba, Valencia and Florenzi.
Carlos Alberto: I rest my case
Enganche: you forgot Hysaj, Vrsaljko, fabinho, Sidebe, Pereira, Kimmich and probably more. I have never seen so many talented young fullbacks in one generation.
Cafu,zanetti,Thuran,Lizarazu,zmbrota,sorin,A.cole,Fran(Deportivo)…They were all quality full backs of their own rythm.
Their role unlike the current full backs was not to run the field all by themselve. Mostly,they were deployed in 4-4-2 and two pure wingers were acompanying them, where as the toda’y full backs are basically doing both the wing and defensive role themselves in 4-3-3 formations.
2 of the 3 currebt upfronts are not pure wingers. Pairing with Mauro Camoranesi for any right full back is not the same as with Leo messi,Neymar or c.Ronaldo. None of the latter three are expected to fully spent in protecting their line nor are they creating chances through wonder crosses while the likes of Beckham,Mauro,K.Gonzalez,and Giggs were doing it easily. That is why scoring goal is easy for the likes of Messi,Cristiano,Hazard,Bale,Dybala etal; thanks to the modern full backs and partly to one extra midfield, they have in 4-3-3 formations.
Yes, as in all schemes of the game has been changed, the role of fullbacks also changed. Nowadays they are more midfielders than wingers, because of the reduced defensive duties of the winger/pseudo forwards. I guess its partly because none of camoranesi or becham could score 60 goals in a season. Somehow you gotta make some adjustments.
Yeah Monaco has really good fullbacks, I had no idea until yesterday. The teams with modern fullbacks and versatile box-to-box midfielders are more likely to succeed.
What is a modern fullback? That’s like me saying Russell Westbrook is a modern point guard which doesn’t make any sense.
As per Darmian: Now a great full-back isn’t just one who stops every attack, but also gets forward wherever possible because the attacking demands have increased,”
“We need to help our strikers and wingers more than before, but we have to be focused also behind, because defending is still the most important thing. Those duties mean it is important that you are smart and focused all the time.
“Good technique helps and, of course, more and more it is important that you are a strong runner because you have to get up and down the pitch.
“If you look around at the best full-backs in the world today, they all have those attributes.”
Darmian believes the best fullbacks around are Real Madrid’s Marcelo, Dani Alves of Juventus and Bayern Munich’s David Alaba as well as his own United team mate Antonio Valencia, a former winger.
“The good old fashioned full back that could get stuck in and get by with just his defensive duties is no longer wanted and clubs are now looking for a player that is just as good at going forward as they are getting back. A player that will highlight this in will be Bayern Munich’s David Alaba, at the solitary age of 23 he has already caught the world’s eye as one of the most impressive full backs in the world”.
The Monaco fullbacks are quick going forward with decent technical abilities, that’s about it. A Player out running is opponent has nothing to do with being modern. Valencia from Ecuador is a good fullback if you ask me.
Yep, Valencia – a converted winger.
Enganche: Monaco has so many fullbacks that they play one in their midfield. Some very accomplished reporter (probably sid lowe) jokingly wrote that Monaco is a team made of 10 fullbacks. 😛
Just that you know both Fabinho and Sidebe are Barcelona target for the next season.
But they defensive work was utterly shit due to their no-brainer runnings.
Look at Barcelona – one of the main reason their team is so awful this season because they failed to replace Dani Alves. It just take out the entire width down the right and destroyes the shape of the whole team. not only that, it makes their RCM play wide, which leaves so many spaces for counterattacks.
At the moment, the world is full of talented 22/23 year old fullbacks. really exciting!
Yeah, Aleix Vidal was just starting to show promising signs for FCB and then un unfortunate injury.
And then there is a certain Jose Luis Gomez who just might surprise some of the sceptics around here, hopefully sooner rather than later.
I would have been hopeful if he was born in any other place except Argentina. Argentina isn’t the country to be a young player right now, plus him being a fullback is just almost like a crime.
Argies don’t like fullbacks, they play CB as fullbacks and they have stretched it as far as not playing Pupi of all people. It hurts the team balance they said, he was too attacking they said. Where in the same continent the yellow team played Cafu and Carlos together. So thats that. We didn’t have the balls to play sorin and Pupi together. And I predict they will almost certainly wouldn’t play Gomez or any other able RB anytime soon.
I sincerely hope Gomez does turn out to be a huge success for Argentina’s sake, but I’m highly skeptical.
Meanwhile in Porto vs Juve, one world class fullback assists another to score. Of course Brazil are lucky to have fullbacks like that even if their #9 are in short supply nowadays….
Fullbacks are not Argentina strong suit.
Even Sandro was their best player. Fortunately, none of these full backs are replicating their club form to N.T.,including Marcelo ‘n the athletico guy.
Marcelo is a liability defensively.
Sandro is better in attack than Felipe Luis and way better than Marcelo defensively. Roberto Carlos called him his heir
Out of the three players, for me Felipe Luis is better defensively while Marcelo and Sandro are more talented going forward.
Can’t understand why he is shifted to attack. Correa has a talent to for attacking midfielder.
but he scored finally
Why is J. Correa very bad on penalities. He had a night to forget against Lyon in their group match at home, same is happening to day
Dybala goalazo disallowed for offside.
Apparently J.Correa is better at scoring from open play 😀
He off sets it Correa!!
Dybala almost scored a golazo….
Ufff…that was nerve racking, watching second half of Valencia vs Real Madrid. I was sooo rooting for Valencia, mostly because of Garay and Enzo (who both had a good game).
Garay is calm headed and full of composure especially in difficult situation.
Losing Nani hurt Valencia attack though, he was providing width and pace down the left hand side of the flank.
Oh yeah? I didn’t see the first half. After losing Nani Valencia had a double left-back situation with both Siqueira and Gaya, kinda like they used to do with Mathieu and Jordi Alba back in the day.
Yea, the commentator mention that during the change.
Absolutely! Hopefully Bauza was watching. Why the heck is going to call up Caruzzo when we have an in-form Garay? Enzo was good defensively too.
once fit, Garay should be on the team, no ifs or but!
I miss el pupi. We really could use him right now…
Together, they cannot fight for their NT jersey now, but they join their hands in their fight for a better world!
A Land gave birth to gems like Zanetti; also gave births to wretches like Don Grondona, Luis Segura, Armando Perez, Bauza etc.
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