Player Ratings for Argentina vs. Haiti

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Argentina played a friendly “despedidamatch against Haiti last night, taking care of the Caribbean side 4-0 and leaving their home country with a good feeling and hope for the coming month-plus.

A total of 17 players took part in the match, as six substitutions were allowed. Notable players like Paulo DYBALA, Lucas BIGLIA and Gabriel MERCADO weren’t used, the latter two likely due to carrying knocks.

Here are the players who participated and their ratings for their performances in the match.

Starters

GK Willy CABALLERO

Didn’t get even a sniff of the ball outside of a few pass-backs. Not the best match to judge him on.

Rating: N/A

LB Nicolas TAGLIAFICO

Consistently got forward and provided another form of attack from the left flank. Tracked back well on defense when needed and showed passion and energy. Has earned his spot as the starting left back at the World Cup.

Rating: 8.5/10

CB Federico FAZIO

Wasn’t tested in defense, but he had a couple of loose passes and didn’t look all that comfortable. Still likely to start against Iceland, but Marcos ROJO looked more assured than him.

Rating: 6/10

CB Nicolas OTAMENDI

Like FAZIO, wasn’t threatened all that often, but he stepped up and cut out passes when the opportunity arrived. Also made some stellar long passes from his deep position.

Rating: 8.5/10

RB Eduardo SALVIO

Playing in an unnatural position, SALVIO held up well and consistently got forward with pace and dribbling ability. Committed one or two unneeded fouls and got himself into a few precarious situations with the ball, but played well overall.

Rating: 7/10

CM Javier MASCHERANO

Earning his Argentina record 143rd cap, MASCHERANO looked like the younger version of himself at times, making several important tackles in the midfield. He also created a fair share of chances with long passes. Perhaps El Jefecito isn’t over the hill just yet.

Rating: 7.5/10

CM Giovani LO CELSO

LO CELSO appears to improve as every match goes by. The 22-year-old attacking midfielder has played center mid for both PSG and Argentina as of late. In this match, he seamlessly linked the defense with the attack and always made the right decision. His movement with the ball, great vision and ability to make sound tackles in defense has made him indispensable for SAMPAOLI.

Rating: 9/10

LM Angel DI MARIA

DI MARIA’s only saving grace at this point is that he’s willing to take on defenders and never gets tired, which allows him to track back on defense. His final touches/decisions are nothing short of terrible at this point and he doesn’t even look at TAGLIAFICO when he makes forward runs from his left back spot. Cristian PAVON did more in his first few minutes on the pitch than DI MARIA did in an hour. SAMPAOLI has a conundrum on his hands.

Rating: 4.5/10

RM Manuel LANZINI

Didn’t quite recreate the magic of his performance against Italy, but was solid with the ball at his feet and connected well with MESSI and the other attackers.

Rating: 6.5/10

CF Lionel Messi

What more is there to say about the guy? In the team’s farewell match, the captain notched a hat-trick and an assist and sent the team off in style. This might be the best condition and form MESSI has ever arrived to an international tournament in.

Rating: 9.5/10

ST Gonzalo Higuain

As has become customary, he missed one too many chances and just seems lost for confidence right now. He can’t be counted on as the starting number nine, especially for a team that’s starving for goals.

Rating: 5.5/10

Substitutes

CB Marcos ROJO

Like all of the other center backs, ROJO wasn’t given opportunities to defense, but seemed more comfortable than FAZIO. Made a couple of good passes and could prove to be a threat to FAZIO’s starting spot.

Rating: 7/10

RM Maxi MEZA

Came on for LANZINI and played more of a midfielder role than he did against Spain. Took on defenders at times and had a couple of link-ups with MESSI. Also tracked back well and covered for SALVIO when he got forward.

Rating: 7/10

LM Cristian PAVON

Seven minutes after stepping on the pitch, PAVON assisted MESSI’s third goal by weaving his way through three players and lacing a left-footed pass to the middle of the box. He was a bit unsettled at first, but got more comfortable as the nerves wore off. PAVON’s dynamism and clever decision making will force SAMPAOLI to give him a lot of playing time in Russia, possibly at the expense of DI MARIA.

Rating: 8/10

ST Sergio AGUERO

There should be no more debate as to who Argentina’s number nine needs to be. AGUERO’s goal 10 minutes after coming on was vintage, as he held off a defender with his impeccable lower body strength, caught up to a MESSI through ball and lifted his finish past the goalkeeper. Looked lively, both when making runs and when dropping back and passing. Argentina needs AGUERO to stay healthy for the entire World Cup.

Rating: 8.5/10

LB Marcos ACUNA

Got about 20 minutes of action, but Argentina was content to pass the ball around the middle of the field by that point.

Rating: N/A

CM Ever BANEGA

Only played 15 minutes, but he has fallen way behind LO CELSO in the pecking order. Still could prove to be valuable in Russia when Argentina needs to hold the ball with a lead.

Rating: N/A

44 Comments

  1. Man, that kid Pavón is really impressive, despite his subpar dribbling skills lol.. He has amassed 3/4 assists in the last 5 games which is a clearly indication of his effectiveness. I think Samp should start on the left over DiMaria whose decision making has not improved over the last 5 years. The final straw for me in the game vs Haiti, was when Messi passed the ball to DiMaria at the edge of the box ala Alba, expecting DiMaria to return the pass immediately because he (Messi) was in better position to score, but the headless chicken unsurprisingly went for glory and shot it from a difficult angle smh…

    Anyhow, I think Pavón has great potential but he definitely needs to work on his dribbling. Right now, he seems to be finding success by outmuscling, outhustling and outruning his opponents which may work on most RB but it remains to be seen – how that works vs a more stout defender ✌🏾

    Also, I think Lanzini had a solid game.. I see a lot of posters here already want him replaced by Meza which is all and dandy until Meza has a bad game then what? Criticize Samp for not taking Perotti or Centurion next?

    Y’all gotta understand, this is not a video game where you throw random players in a lineup and hoping for magical results. Some of these players are still learning how to gel with each other and they will continue to get strainger as the tournament goes on….

    • I agree with you on the points you have said on Pavon. Having good dribbling skills is good for any player, but it isn’t the one thing a player can’t have. For instance, Muller isn’t a good dribbler and at the same time he is very vital for the Germans.

      About Lanzini, I believe he had a very good game vs Haiti. It’s true that his performance against Italy was better than the one vs Haiti, but those of us who think Lanzini is inconsistent don’t realize that Argentina’s team project is new and the team chemistry is in its infancy phase.

      Lo Celso, whom I see as the the glue that keeps the midfield together, was called as an overrated player after having an average performance against Real Madrid and some of Mundo members considered him as a below NT level player. The same thing was said about Tagliafico.

      Those who always watch football with eyes only can’t see the beauty of the game untill their brain starts to function properly.

      Del Bosque once said “if you watch the whole game you won’t see Busquets – but watch Buquets, and you will see the whole game”

      For me, watching Lo Celso and Lanzini can show me the whole game!

    • Reg first para, couldn’t agree with you more. I too felt “Goal” when Messi passed to DiMaria. We have seen numerous such Messi goals at Barca with Messi-Alba collection. Unfortunately, poor DiMaria went for glory himself and wasted the oportunity. Hence, I too think Pavon should be the unanimous choice at the LW. With Messi and Aguero upfront, you need your wingers to prefer assist than shoot.

  2. Well World Cup is so near now, It’s been a long Journey for us with several coaches. I think Sampa has a very good squad there is youth there is experience too. My only concern is about the Goal Keeping position, Caballero is a tuff GK bit after the Spain match, Frankly not confident about him(It’s not entirely his faults but Some of the Goals conceded in that match was very bad) I think he would have been perfect for 2014 WC. He was on fire that time, but now??Well for GKs age is not a barrier. Armani is a courageous GK, everybody in Argentina wants him to start, so there must be a reason (But chemistry with the defence is also important). I don’t know but hope Caballero can have great 7 Matches. Only name missing was Icardi, He should have been a great Sub. He would have gained great experience by taking part in the WC, well he is our future Number 9. Have to trust on Sampas instincts and formations now. Have a great World Cup to all.

    • Our concerns are goalkeeper,defense (specially right back and central back),and defensive midfielder.if biglia can’t play 100% I don’t think masche can cope.his passing is ok but he completely different player now defensively.I saw caballero in training he was good and Armani mayb good but lacking in confidence and too much intimidated by Messi.Messi was easily scoring against him.looked tentative and lack of confidence.caballero on the other hand was actually looked better.but we all know performing in training and in the field is completely different thing as we all saw higuain was scoring for fun in training but can’t score in actual match.and caballero may lack confidence.he is technically good. good in penalties but still he often commits too much mistakes and that can cost us like karius costed Liverpool the champions league.

      • Hope all can be fit & give their heart out during the WC , 7 Matches. I think Sampa is more confident with Caballero, Armani may be our GK after the WC i guess. He is 31 so he can carry on for us longer. Its all done and dusted with the player selection now all we can now wish and hope is that Sampas instincts and tactics clicks.

        • When 2014 team was announced the biggest debate was Romero vs Cabellero. Majority people hated Sabella for not calling Caballero who clearly was our best goal keeper on form & performance. I remember one of his Malaga games against Real Madrid where he was super human with his stops & reflex. Even more shocking was Caballero not even getting a chance as reserve goalkeeper. If he starts as No 1 , its is justice delayed by 4 years. But for a 36year old , now club reserve player to keep a clean scoreline against the mighty Germans, Spanish , Brazilian attack line sounds like a Rocky Balboa script to me.

          • Problem is in Argentina selection is coaches always don’t select players when they are in form but when they passed it they got selected so we don’t see their proper potential.

          • @amit without very strong defensive performance a goalkeeper can’t have cleanshits.i don’t think we have the defense to have clean shits against biggest opponents.for winning the trophy we have to outscore them and that’s hard as those teams also has quite strong and solid defense.that’s why nobody saying we can win the wc.even Messi Tapia and sampaoli playing it safe by saying we are not contenders which is actually true

  3. We shouldn’t expect Sampaoli to turn things around. He is doing nothing but saving his own ass***le. He knows he can’t kickout some old, slow, uninterested, passionless, unwillingness players will be there in the team for WC because of huge corruption going on in AFA management for last 4 years and till now.
    But Messi should not worry about all this. He will be remained best ever player in the history of football

      • When not only Sampaoli but every one knows why Argentina couldn’t lift three major trophies including a WC and recent match statistics says it all that the problem has been not sorted out. Why Sampaoli not realistic about big matches of WC with tough teams. When we have young talented quality forwards far better than qualityless (Higuain) and they are roaring to get a chance who can perfectly match with messi’s style of play. We always ignore the problem and say messi will be saviour.

  4. Sampaoli should have learned from the Spain and Haiti matches which will be his starting XI and what kind of role do Higuain,Masche and Di Maria will contribute. Pavon,Lanzini, Salvio and Lo Celso open our eyes that the youth are growing and will be better by time – contrary with the veterans who gets slow and already pass their prime as time goes by. Pavon is rising star so will be Meza and Lo Celso/Dybala while Higuan is not our first choice anymore. Sampaoli need to explore Dybala as his wild card, hopefully Dybala will get a chance to play him against Israel. One of weakness is a player which have a good at a long shot quality to goal and Dybala is the right one. Don’t be in dilemmatic isssue that he can’t play alongwith Messi. The team should play in versatility

    • this days Sampaoli is building the team. they are working hard to unite the pieces and unite the new blood of the team (young new players ) with the experienced veterans. good days are coming my friend 🙂 be little patient and all of us will have happy summer 🙂

    • I would play dybala as aguero sub for last 20-25 minutes.that way aguero will be properly rested plus a fresh dybala against tired defenders

  5. Many of here misleading my previous comments on i supported Germany whole turnement in 2014 and won the world cup. In 2018 I’m supporting Argentina and hope history will repeat again. Before 2014 i didn’t watch football often nor understand football much but always cheered for Germany as I’m Hitler fan. When i started watching football then become Messi fan as well as Argentina fan too. Now Argentina is my favourite and Germany 2nd favourite wish both will met another final

  6. Several European media called it a win that boosts confidence. Others repeat the Messi dependency to score goals and question the strength of the squad. Against players from the 3rd and 4th division in England we only managed 1 goal in 45 minutes and that was a penalty.

    Obviously they did not see the match but put that way it does not look convincing.

    • our players did not push hard in this game because there was no reason to risk anything. injuries etc
      plus no reason to humiliate one team that make us favor to come to Argentina for friendly game.
      don t worry my friend. everything will go well for our team 🙂 good days are coming 🙂

    • Agreed, except for me Mascherano was an 8.5 or 9. He owned the center like his old days and created the most long ball chances. His understanding with Messi shows they shared time in Barca. Yes it was Haiti, but, they are fast and strong and Masch held his own, added muscle in his tackles and his distributions where spot on. I like the Locelso masch pair quite a bit.

  7. Why AFA still fearing this old Fat Higuain to kickout from the squad. Is there not corruption in AFA management to play this old fat slow guy for years and still now in WC for nothing???
    Deadliest powerful striker Icardi should be called immediately to join and train with Messi and Dimaria and other guys before WC if AFA really wants to win the World cup. Otherwise it seems a big scandal and corruption by playing Old and slow and lazy players when we have far better young amazing potential players are begging to get a single chance to show themselves what they are.

    • AFA don t have anything to do with that.you say nonsense. we have coach for that job. his name is Jorge Sampaoli . he made the selection of the 23 players. he chooses him because he believe he need him to his plans for the squad. this about scandal and corruption exists only in your brain. something last . the most of fans in Argentina included me we don t want Icardi in the national team. ahh sorry mister Nara i should say more correct !!! we don t want him and his wife/manager/…. to make the team dressing rooms ….red house during the world cup!!!!

      • Bro, You don’t know nothing about Argentina football. Your case is like, “Little learning is very dangerous thing.” When we say the uninterested, slow, lazy, passionless players are killing Argentina football for years and also this time again in WC. The guys like you ass***le come and vomiting shits who doesn’t know the anything about football. Don’t see match against Haiti. keep aside Messi, Argentina turns into below the level of Haiti if Aguero is not there. You can worship as much you like your beloved father “Jorge Sampaoli.” for including old, uninterested and passionless players for WC. But Remember one thing, We as a true fan of Argentina, can only know both the weakness and strength. So don’t watch football, better for you to serve Sampaoli and Higuain’s ass***le.

        • first of all you should learn something important. to respect people. i will not make you the favor to go down to your level speaking bad. start respect people and their opinions. it is called democracy. we give much blood in my country for be able to speak free. something last. just because i am Argentinian sure something i can know too about my country s football. you don t think so? anyway.

          • Well said. We should all try to remember these words. Always, but especially during the World Cup. We all are passionate about the team and have different opinions, but respect for one another should come first and foremost.

    • Well lets pray that Kun keeps his fitness and Dybala will impress Sampaoli in next friendly against Isreal. Higuain should only be used if we are winning or if we need to rest Kun and Dybala. If we are trailing then there is no point sending Higuain off the bench. He will crack under that pressure and waste all the opportunities and will get us knocked out.

      Also, Dimaria is going to start ahead of Pavon against Iceland but if Dimaria doesn’t improve his game then 2nd game onwards Pavon should get the nod ahead of him.

      Meza should be tried against Isreal . Lanzini is not going to cut it for me. He seems to be an average player from a midtable Epl team.Messi and Kun needs a solid midfield which can create chaces for them, keep possession of the ball and provide cover to our vulnerable defense.

  8. I’m still not convinced with the performance of Caballero. The only time he was challanged he came forward to clear a defender’s ball and was very unconvincing in my eyes. If he is our starter I hope he make his decisions correctly as one mistake from the keeper and the game is over.

        • there is big difference between what you believe which based on some facts and what this astrologist wants us to believe based on some unlogical stars and planets location and timing. I believed that Argentina has a chance too. and this belief is based on many facts not because of some crazy astrologist prediction.

      • This trick clicked since 2008, so why not to believe.And he is not tell us to believe as panama or tunisia is getting the WC with the help of stars, Its argentina, and its quite possible in footballing aspect too. With a discipline performance from defence we got a good chance.I think this time argentina loaded with way better bench strength compare to 2014, where we had maxi,Ricky,Palacio now we have Dybala, Higuain,Banega ,Acuna, Pavon etc.So why not to belief. All I can say its not a false hope…

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