Cristian PAVÓN and Franco ARMANI of Argentina speak to the press


Cristian PAVÓN and Franco ARMANI spoke to the media on Friday.

One of Boca Juniors and the other of River Plate, one several years younger than the other but fighting for one dream, for one country. Following Javier MASCHERANO’s press conference from Thursday, it was PAVÓN and ANSALDI who were selected to speak at a press conference on Friday. Here’s what they had to say:

Cristian PAVÓN:

“I’m in the National Team and I’m enjoying the beauty of it. We have to be calm, to try and enjoy every match that we play and bring out best.”

Cristian PAVÓN on being compared with Argentina legend Claudio CANIGGIA:

“Comparing me with CANIGGIA is an enormous happiness. I really want to keep learning and I’ll work towards that.”

Cristian PAVÓN on Lionel MESSI:

“If I’m put in to play next to MESSI, it will be great. He’s the best in the world. It would be a dream come true. I feel much more comfortable playing on the left.”

Cristian Pavón Lionel Messi Argentina
Cristian Pavón and Lionel Messi while playing for the Argentina National Team.

Cristian PAVÓN on himself and the team:

“If I had the most assists (with Boca), that’s thanks to my team mates. Hopefully it repeats here. It fills me with joy that my team mates congratulate me for my work. I thank them for being such great human beings.”

Cristian PAVON on the World Cup:

“Hopefully we win the World Cup. It’s what we are all working towards. I try to learn a little more about the players I have to my side.”

Franco ARMANI:

“Now I want to work and give the most from my side. The goal is the World Cup and to try and fight for it. From the day I spoke to him (SAMPAOLI), I’ve tried my best to have the chance I am waiting to get.

Franco ARMANI on the Argentina team:

“The quality of everyone here is on display. I want to enjoy this moment because it’s not something you live every day. Every one of the three goalkeepers here came to work. After that, the coach will decidew who plays. We must add to this healthy competition.”

Franco ARMANI on Sergio ROMERO and the goalkeepers:

“What happened with ROMERO brought us a lot of pain. We put ourselves in his place. I extend my greetings to him and lots of strength. Hopefully he has a quick recovery and he comes out of it stronger. We know what ROMERO is for this National Team. He was the starter, he came to play. Now all three of us have to bring what we can.

The three goalkeepers have to be at a good level. Everyone has their own quality in goal and for that we were all called. I am here today because of my form in the past few years. It’s a process.

Sergio Romero Argentina
Sergio Romero playing for the Argentina National Team.

Franco ARMANI on Lionel MESSI:

“It’s a privilege and an honor to share every training session with Leo (MESSI). Today, I was able to train with him and the truth is that he’s just great. I think he scored every goal against me, haha! We have to enjoy MESSI.”

Franco ARMANI on the team and himself:

“From the outside, I saw a very strong National Team, with a lot of potential. We have to value that we have the best players. Personally, I’m coming here to contribute what I can.

I’m very happy to have taken the decision to play in Argentina. That has given me the chance to be here today. Ever since I got here, my team mates have received me in the best possible way. With simplicity, humility and very hungry to get this World Cup.”


  1. Can anybody tell how is Haiti or Israel?? Can they pose any threat in attack?? Or they most likely park the bus opponents??

  2. It’s strange that we are dwell in the debate of evaluating Higuain. The guy is a piece of shit, also he hates the fans like when he said: I don’t owe the fans anything. It’s a wasted spot if you ask me as we are down to 22 players now.

  3. The trolling sheriff and his deputy are out in full force today. You know yourselves. Always 😡😡😖 none stop!

  4. Sampa again used the following team in training:

    Ansaldi | Otamendi | Fazio | Tagliafico
    Lanzini | Lo Celso | Mascherano | DiMaria
    Messi | Higuain

    The formation is not clear though. It could be 4-4-2, 4-1-4-1 (midfield diamond), 4-2-3-1 (attack diamond), 4-1-3-2. We will have to watch the first game to see where Messi, Lo Celso, Mascherano play.

    I think Bigilia & Aguero may come into the starting 11 once they become more match fit. Their alternatives might have got the nod coz both players have just come back from injury.

    • This formation may play in Haiti friendly.sampaoli may not risk aguero in Haiti friendly.but seeing higuain start is very disappointing.I am sure I would be again disappointed seeing caballero start ahead of Armani

  5. Higuain out of nothing make chances happen for himself, this is because he presses the back line and can hustle the ball off of defenders. It’s not like Higuain was getting chances left, right and center and was missing 5-6 chances, that would be more like choking. So take Higuain out of the final against Chile and Germany and none of those chances would have happen for anybody else, period. For team like Argentina, it shouldn’t come down to a player forcing the opposing defender into an unforced error for the team to score a goal. I’m guessing Argentina only chance of winning the world cup is if the opponent midfield player in the final will have to head the ball back into his own 18 yard box gifting one of our forward a chance? Argentina need to create more goal scoring chances instead of relying on unforced error to win a game, this is just not viable for success. What’s the point of having such an attacking force on our team yet rely on scraps to win games?

    • Higuain has wasted a lot of chances in the recent games he played. Against Spain, he got a couple of good chances from some nice attacking game from Argentina, but he fluffed it.

      I hope he takes his chances and proves everyone wrong in the world cup.

      He will have to play well to cement his place in the remaining games. Sampa has more than one option for each and every position.

      • “”I hope he takes his chances and proves everyone wrong in the world cup”

        It’s the other way round. He will prove everyone right!

        Argentina’s goals will come through Messi, Aguero, Di Maria, Lanzini, Meza & Lo Celso. Not through Finished-and-flop Higuain.

        • I think now that we have our squad, we should stop criticizing or insulting our players. We should just wish best of luck to all our players even if you didn’t like any of them due to past experience.

          I just hope whoever plays perform well whether it’s Higuain, Aguero, DiMaria etc.

          Let’s stop being haters of anyone.

          Let’s stand united! Vamos Argentina!!

          • “Let’s stop being haters of anyone”

            This is not called HATE, it’s called FACT.

            I hope you know the difference between the two words.

  6. I rate sampaoli very high & I feel he is suited for this NT team because Argentina do possess quality attacking players & they need a coach who also has an attacking mind set. Having said that, I also feel that sampaoli got little time with the team to properly build a system to be a genuine contender at WC. Regardless of the above arguments, sampaoli will still be able to find a short-term solution and they will be highly competitive at the WC because he is a good tactician plus messi. I also hope that regardless of the result of this WC, sampaoli and messi continue to work together at least till the Copa America 2019 to have a proper chance of winning.

  7. The only team that can beat Madrid is Barcelona and Barcelona without Messi is nothing . It will even struggle to qualify for top-4 in Spain without him. Poor Liverpool keeper the guy just didn’t have the mental toughness to play in a game of such high caliber. That is why mental strength is key. Willy is mentally strong so I am not worried about GK situation. He is better than Romero in distributing the ball and also he is good penalty stopper. Romero and Willy were in same level. Romero had world cup experience and he could have been a good backup. I hope Armani is mentally strong too as Sampaoli could choose him over Willy if he impresses in training sessions.

    Glad we had no one playing in the final today. We couldn’t afford to lose any of our key players due to injury. I pray that Moh Salah gets fit for the world cup. There is no fun watching the world cup without the stars.

    • Willy caballero lost his mental toughness he recently in every big match has committed some howlers and that’s not mental toughness.

      • I think its because of his age and lack of playing time. He came 4 yrs too late in the team. His reflexes are not the same and his judgments are also error prone. Romero would have also conceded the same number of goals against Spain had he not got injured. Our defense and midfield were pathetic that day. Armani most likely will put on the gloves if Sampa is not satisfied with Willy. He is highly rated by the Argentine local media. Hopefully he is mentally tough.

  8. im pleased both of these 2 are in the team, both are very promising.
    Armani looks a fine prospect and need to be given the 2 friendlies to prove he’s up to it (we already know what guz and cab can do), as Armani is in fine form and is having a great season.

    I also like pavon and he could be a big surprise as few around the world really know about him and how he plays, another who has have a good season and is in good form.

  9. Liverpool keeper let easy goals in. Munich keeper was doing the same in the semifinal. Football is not as innocent as we think.
    now watch them crown brazil & neymar.

  10. Three mediocre England midfielders play against Lucas Modric and Tony Kroos.
    In my opinion, Lucas and Tony are better than Xavi and Iniesta. Because they can play both counter attack and procession game. They controlled the rhythm very very well so that Real Madrid always have advantage in not having fatigue in every stages of the game.

    • karl: You must be joking if you think Modric and Kroos are better than Xavi and Iniesta. Xavi was playing on a high level midfielder until he left Barca at age 34, Xavi scores goals in CL beside being the heart and mystro of both his club and NT. Iniesta is the dynamo for all Barca’s games and he also scores goals, attacks, and leads the midfield operation like no other midfielder in the world. Both Xavi and Iniesta were a factor in winning the world cup and winning CL’s during their prime. To compare the evil empire troops like Modric and Kroos to them is an insult to the football history.

      Real Madrid won today because Liverpool ‘s goalie gifted them 3 goals easily, and I think he was bribed because just didn’t make sense to me. Liverpool players gave it all and played hard even after Salah left the field, but their goalkeeper betrayed them. The first gift was an unforgiven error, the second bicycle kick where Bale was taking his time and preparing to shoot, very obvious where, when and which direction he was going to shoot, still Karius had no clue to at least make the effort to stop it, last long ball shot when he stoped the third ball only to let it fly inside his net. Very sick and pathetic, but his career with Liverpool is over, I hope.

      • Agreed. No match to Xavi Iniesta duo & Trio including messi, in football history. Both of the were not good tacklers.
        Still barca dominated the world with just one defensive minded midfielder.

  11. Now I’m worried about Argentina goalkeeper position. We have three inexperience goalkeeper on the international stage all of whom have never played in a major tournament before. This is a huge issue right now. Cabellero is a great keeper but against Spain the moment got to him and he made error after error, so imagine at the world cup where the stage is even bigger compare to the friendly against Spain? Armani is good but the world cup is not the Argentina Primera or Colombian league. Guzman? Sergio Romero will be miss! Hopefully everything will come together for whomever gets the nod in goal for Argentina.

    • Absolutely kid and I have seen others who didn’t want his selection. One thing they don’t understand is you need experience at the biggest stage to perform at the world cup. Romero already faced some pressure situations last world cup and his experience would have really helped us. Anyways, hope for the best.

      • What international experience? being a bench warmer since last world cup 4 years ago? Unless he has a metallic memory for goalkeeping, no any goalkeeper would retain his experience after 4 years of being bench warmer. Losing Romero is not a blow for the team, the guy has 0 name in the market of goalkeepers. Yes he was reliable and saved us against Netherlands last world cup, but we are talking about today’s level, not tasks accomplished 4 years ago.

  12. Initial word from Madrid: Carvajal tear his most probably carvajal out from world cup.sergi Roberto may get the chance now

  13. OMG.. injuries galore at champions league final…salah & now carvajal…. Relieved our players are all done with matches. Hope salah recovers for world cup

  14. Some people on this blog are so sensitive, It’s never fun writing comments here. When you come here it’s like a pack of hyenas waiting to devour you. I remember a while back I made a positive comment about Argentina on another website, and all of a sudden everybody came at me, I’m like to myself, ok, next time I’ll just get along with the program and put Argentina in the ”mediocre team category.”

    Most people here can’t even have a discussion about football, you write something and they’ll turn it into personal insults and attacks. This is so juvenile.

    I made my own world cup predictions, why should that offend anyone here? Predictions are one’s own opinion. If you go on YouTube right now you will find a ”million” world cup prediction videos, some even have Australia making the semis, so do I need to go on their channel/video and call them names because they predicted that Australia or Costa Rica will make the semis? No, so why don’t you grow up already people and stop being childish and insensitive when responding to someone comment!

    So I have Iran making out of the group with Spain, this is not beyond the realms of possibility. Portugal finished 3rd place at the 2014 world cup and 3rd place at the 2016 Euros during the group stage, the only reason they made it out of the group at the Euros was because of some weird rule change where the best 3rd place finish team can advance. With this track record I don’t see Portugal getting out of the group, their squad is so old too especially their defensive pair CB’s averaging at around ‘’60’’ years old. Iran went undefeated in their qualification zone and they barely concede goals. The group stage is set up perfect for a team like Iran to advance given that Spain will surely win against Portugal in the opening game putting massive pressure on them to advance, I don’t see Morocco beating Iran in the opening game, Iran is just better. Morocco has a decent squad with players like Nordin Amrabat from Leganes, but I just don’t see them making it out the group stage. Moreover, Iran has one of the most experience coach at this year world cup, former Portugal coach Carlos Queiroz who will surely know everything about this current Portugal team.

    France is too young and inexperienced, a lot of talent but many of the French players are overly exaggerated for doing absolutely nothing on the national stage. This team will implode, and the old France indiscipline behavior between national team players are already resurfacing. Adrien Rabiot being left off the French squad is already unsettling Deschamps because of what is being said. Moreover, Wissam Ben Yedder was one of the UCL best striker this season scoring 9 goals yet he was over look for OVERRATED EPL players Like Olivier Giroud. And No Benzema, this France team is out in the group as I predicted. This French team will implode in Russia. Follow the sequence; France 2002 WC Group stage—->2006 WC stay———> 2010 WC Group stage——-> 2014 WC Stay——–> 2018 WC Group stage. Please keep on overrating this French team, the 2016 Euros was basically given to them yet they blew it.

    England I need to say no more!!

    Switzerland is a top team for the past several years hence the reason they have been in the FIFA top ten going back even pre 2014 world cup. Switzerland is good enough to beat or tie Brazil in the opening game. Remember this, Switzerland defeated Spain during the group stage at the 2010 world cup opening game. Serbia defeated Germany during the group stage at the 2010 world cup. I’m not saying Switzerland is better than Brazil overall, but it’s not beyond the realms of possibility for Switzerland a win or tie over Brazil in the opening game hence the reason I have them winning the group. And given Brazil recent history, they haven’t been all that great playing against well organize European team. Ricardo Rodríguez, Stephan Lichtsteiner and Johan Djourou have the ability and athleticism to neutral Brazil strength which is their LB, RB and wingers.

    It’s funny how everyone all of a sudden is talking up this Iceland team, and for what? Because they played decent football in a continental cup competition where they defeated England? News flash, Costa Rica kicked England out of the last World cup. Greece won the Euros yet Costa Rica defeated them at the last world cup. People need to get off the Iceland bandwagon, and to assume a team like Nigeria can’t beat Iceland whose best player is injury and played for a mid-table club Everton FC. Croatia midfield is like snail, look what Peru did to them. Nigeria won’t have any problem winning against this Croatian team in Russia. Rakitic is nothing special, he has been mediocre for Barcelona in the last two season. Modric best days are behind him, he doesn’t have the legs anymore like before.

    I made my predictions, it was of free will, and I have good reason for making them. You don’t have to agree with my predictions, same as you don’t have to agree with the millions of 2018 world cup predictions currently on the world wide web! If you want to call people names because of world cup predictions, well there is YouTube for you where they have hundreds of 2018 world cup prediction videos. And while you’re at it, don’t pull your hair out while commenting on people’s videos and channel because they didn’t please you. If the crew members over at ESPN and Sky Sport made their 2018 world cup predictions and they all got it wrong in the end, do you really think this will be a BIG deal for them? NOPE! These people predictions are no more important than yours or mine, they are all having funny just like me, it only get serious when people put their money behind these predictions and I personally don’t and never gamble before.

    Another thing, why always bring up, ‘’you don’t know anything about football’’ argument? Personally, I have a lot of experience in sports, but then again, I don’t need to brag about this or show off.

  15. All of our goals from our forwards:
    1. Paulo Dybala 26 goals this season:

    note: For me his FK and penalty is slightly better than Messi. He does not have Messi’s pace but his left foot is as deadly.

    2. Sergio Aguero 32 goals:

    note: if he can return to his form before injured, then I guarantee you that this is the best form in his life.

    3. Gonzalo Higuain 23 goals:

    4. Angel Di Maria 21 goals:

    5. Lionel Messi 48 goals:


    1. A LOT of goals are assisted by Jordi Alba. One of the goals Messi scored is assisted by Di Maria in almost exactly the same way (from left wing).

    2. It took A YEAR (I repeat A YEAR) or so for: Alba, Dani Alves, and Neymar in different eras to be Messi’s best partners. In Alba’s and Alves first year in their Barca career, their understanding with Messi was limited. Neymar’s first year? you go ahead answer it yourself.

    3. Di Maria’s assist to Messi was one of out finest go-to moves. We have scored that way many times in the last 5-6 years. For me the key for our success in the world cup is this duo. Messi has already built understanding with Di Maria like none others. You talk about Icardi or Dybala, yes they are great players but it takes a year or 50 + matches (plus training together everyday) for players like Alba or Alves or Neymar to finally figure out how to work with Messi.

    You can’t simply think: put Dybala and Icardi with Messi and we would dominate the futbol.

    Last but not least, I am NOT haters like you or those in Oscar Ruggeri’s commercial. I am a fan… and I will support the the team whoever players they have. I won’t give my wishful team and thing that I am smarter than Sampaoli, I will just analyze the team.

  16. While we already have our all 23 players training in the NT, some of the countries are still missing their players due to the Champions League final.

    These are the number of players that are currently still with Real Madrid and Liverpool and who will also be playing in the world cup:

    Spain x6
    Brazil x3
    Croatia x3
    England x2
    Germany x1
    France x1
    Portugal x1
    Belgium x1
    Egypt x1
    Morocco x1
    Senegal x1
    Costa Rica x1

    All the best to these players, hope that they play very very hard for the final and get as much injuries as possible, please also do not forget to celebrate and party for a few nights after that! Cheers!

    • Very well said archangel Gabriel. Don’t worry we will win this world cup irrespective of how strong other teams are. We are hardly bothered about other team players. If we can play to our true potential we can beat any team

  17. ————–Armani——————-
    Ansaldi Otamendi Fazio Tagliafico
    ——LoCelso Bigilia Lanzini———-
    —-Messi(c) Aguero DiMaria———

  18. argentina media reporting caballero is the front runner for no.1 goalie.god sae argentina now.reportedly when sampaoli working seperately defensive drills caballero preferred as goalie so by that logic he will be our only god can save us.i am preparing myself mentally for a quarter exit.

    • As i told you earlier there is no undisputed no1 in Argentine squad out of three whom impress sampaoli most is going to be no1. Armani has a good season but not played a single match for Argentina, if he isn’t good with feet what is needed for sampaoli style then cabarello should be no1, plus experience is his side lets see. Out of tree GK Guzman(32,good with feet) played 10 match , Cabarello(36, Sweeper keeper), Armani (32, not sure) yet to debut. Sampaoli will choose best

  19. I’ll love to see Pavon-Messi in attack. My favorite 11 would be:

    Lanzini—Lo Celso—Acuna

    A young and dynamic team with agile and fast players. Lanzini, Lo Celso and Acuna have all decent defensive contribution and great passing skill. Dybala, Di Maria and Aguero can step in during the game.

  20. Argentina top 2002 world cup qualifier where Brazil barely qualified. Brazil top 2018 world cup qualifier where Argentina barely qualified. Argentina entered 2002 world cup with good chemistry and favorites where Brazil entered as underdog. Brazil entering 2018 world cup with good chemistry and favorites where Argentina entering as underdog. History will repeat.

  21. armani simply isnt good enough! not good enough! period! he plays in a mediocre argentine league! very mediocre! why do u think he isnt playing in europe?! because he is worldclass and nobody can pay the fee? bench him already! it doesnt matter what he does with river! he is below par when the real forwards are coming!

    • he mayb good also.sometimes playing in argentine league dont draw attention specially a position like goalkeeper.argentine league is not that bad.locelso dybala all were successful when moved direct to europe.why you think columbia was so desperate to give citizenship and include in their wc squad?? there must be a hink sampaoli dont know anything?? yes europe level is higher but practicing with absolute best from europe like messi aguero dybala higuain dimaria lanzini for 1 month he will understand european standard aswell .frankly i know its risky to play armani as starter but i dont have any faith for caballero as well.armani cant perform worst than what caballero did against caballero also can play like he played against italy but after spain game and that cup final he played was awful and cant be trusted better to take a risk .atleast he has regular playing time.and good leadership and form.

    • @manuel– going by that logic , Romero has been an eternal substitute in Europe clubs for last 5years+. So he should also be no good to start. Playing in a good Europe club is not a guarantee of being a good keeper. Some of the best goalies of 2014 like Ochoa, navas, Howard , eneyema played in mediorce europe clubs during wc.

      • one of the biggest debates in 2014 was cabellero vs Romero. Majority cursed sabella for not giving Caballero a chance & he was in fantastic form in la liga. It was very similar to the icardi vs higuain debate & sabella didn’t even give Caballero a chance or even pick him as a reserve. Sampa at least tried icardi initially. Eventually Romero played well in knockout & sabellla’s decision was forgotten. I have not seen much of Armani. But keep hearing he is brilliant & should start over Caballero ( who unfortunately is late by 4years) & gauzman.

  22. “I think he scored every goal against me”— now that is a concern.he may perform superb in domestic league but international standard is different.he needs to stop those shots from messi in training.domestic league shots are not that tricky while international stage shots will be more tricky .angles will be difficult the curl on the ball can be difficult so lets see how he performs in training.sampaoli is no fool I trust him he will select the right one but loss of Romero is immense.we may struggle without Romero

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