First Argentina training session in Barcelona

148

The Argentina team trained for the first time in Barcelona.

Lionel MESSI must be feeling right at home (literally) as he and the rest of the Argentina team trained at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper, FC Barcelona’s training ground. After flying out and landing in the Catalan capital on Thursday, the original plan was for the players to train Thursday evening but that session was cancelled.

Instead, the team is expected to pull double duty and train twice on Friday in preparation for the match on June 9 versus Israel. Here’s a video posted by the AFA earlier today.

A few of the Argentina players posted pictures from training.

A post shared by Leo Messi (@leomessi) on

🇦🇷⚽️

A post shared by Ángel Di María (@angeldimariajm) on

Primer turno! ✔ @kichanpavon @manulanzini 👏💪🇦🇷

A post shared by Maxi Meza 🇦🇷 (@maximeza7) on

148 Comments

  1. Guys what’s happenings with us is we are all being pessimistic in our approach I believe that Argentina football has turned a new leaf with this squad. We have been through hell recently with three huge losses. I still can’t make myself watch the 2014 WC final. I remember Messi’s face and agony there and I can’t help but cry. It hurts but I truly believe that we can go all the way. Yes we are all scarred and still hurt but imagine the agony of the players. Even if we don’t make it let’s not point fingers but accept it. We owe it to the players who are going to give their all in Russia.

  2. Löw after the Austria-Game:
    “If we play like that, we have no chance in Russia. There is a lot of work to do.”

    Hummels is not at 100%
    Neuer is not at 100%
    Boateng is not at 100%
    Müller played at Bayern not a good season.
    Özil is not the same player, as he was 2014.
    Reus celebrated his comeback today after missing two years for injuries

    Schweinsteiger, Lahm, Klose, Podolski have ended their career.
    Götze and Höwedes (both played in the final) were not nominated.
    And the have not an real number 9

    Only Kroos, Khedira, Kimmich, Sane are in shape

    They are not ready shortly before the World Cup and a World Champion has never defended his title. Okay Italy, when they did not play football in the 30’s.

    Started as a world champion:

    WM 1998 Germany okay.
    World Cup 2002 France not strong.
    World Cup 2006 Brazil not in shape.
    World Cup 2010 Italy loses in the group stage.
    2014 World Cup Spain in the group out.
    World Cup 2018 Germany?

    • WM 1994 Germany out in the quarterfinals against Bulgaria
      *WM 1998 Brazil were very good, but lost in the final

    • forget all you are saying. every single german player will be at 100% at the world cup. every single player will be loaded, fit and ready, full of confidence and ready to hand out some serious ass whoopings! noone will stand a chance. its going to be a nightmare what this team will do to the rest.

  3. I was planning to never comment here again till the end of world cup. But sorry, I can’t keep quiet anymore while my beloved Argentina is discussed here. Here is my two cents;
    We have been discussing for a long time about who is gonnna be our easy opponent and who is gonna be our tougher opponent.
    According to me, our biggest obstructions will be (diificult to beat or we need to really have perfect game to beat’em)
    1 – Germany
    2 – Brazil
    Teams which may look very difficult but in reality we have slight advantage
    1 – Spain
    2 – Belgium
    May be very difficult opponent for others, but never for us;
    1 – France
    2 – England
    Teams which may be easy for others(top teams), but difficult for us;
    1 – Mexico
    2 – Portugal
    The irony in my listing is, it’s more inclined towards the mental difficulty than that of playing ability (With England being the only excemption). Brazil and Germany may or may not be stronger than us, but they’ll always be a hurdle for us. You may feel like I’m a coward when I say that “I’m okay with world cup win with PQF against Tunisia, QF against Iran, SF against Japan and Final against Saudi(I know its not possible, so bitch please…)”. Seriously I’m okay with those type of bitch luck. If you think otherwise, ask any Brazl fan about the 2002 world cup, they’ll be schooling you about free-kick and samba dancing play.Or even better you can ask a Real Madrid player about their hat-trick UCL trophy.Hope you understand my point).
    In short:
    1 – I don’t want us to play Germany or Brazil
    2 – I’m more than happy to play France in final(If we reach there)
    3 – I really wish Italy was there in world cup and had to face Germany in QF.
    4 – And finally, if we win worldcup this time somehow, I want us to play Chile(PQ),England(QF), Brazil(SF) and Germany(Final) and win the world cup as it’ll be the perfect sent-off for Messi.(So here I prove that I’m not that coward…tada)
    (Sorry for the boring brackets…😂😂😂)

      • Sorry bro, I meant for next world cup after winning this world cup…Sad….No option to edit after some minutes. And apart from that comment, everything else is for this world cup…Chile (Said about next world cup), Holland (I don’t mention) and Italy (“I wish” already included in the sentence).Hope it’s an explanation….😂

  4. Argentina 2 vs Italy 0, 2018
    Possession
    60.5% – 39.5%
    Total shots
    14 – 7
    Shots on Target
    8 – 4
    Shots off Target
    3 – 3
    Passes
    90.1% – 84.8%
    Attacking 3rd
    79.5% – 72.6%
    Key Passes
    13 – 7
    Clear Cut Chances
    3 – 2
    Crosses
    17.6% – 33.3%
    Dribbles
    76.2% – 73.1%
    Corners
    3 – 1
    Offside
    2 – 5
    Defence Recoveries
    61 – 59
    Defence Tackles
    66.7% – 50%
    Defence Interceptions
    15 – 9
    Defence Blocks
    0 – 3
    Defence Clearances
    14 – 13
    Defence Arial Duels
    57.1% – 42.9%
    Defence Blocked crosses
    0 – 2
    Saves
    4 – 6

    France 3 vs Italy 1, 2018

    Possession
    57% – 43%
    Total shots
    12 – 15
    Shots on Target
    6 – 6
    Shots off Target
    5 – 7
    Passes
    85.3% – 82.6%
    Attacking 3rd
    72.3% – 66%
    Key Passes
    7– 8
    Clear Cut Chances
    1– 2
    Crosses
    25% – 18.8%
    Dribbles
    42.9% – 30.8%
    Corners
    3 – 4
    Offside
    1 – 2
    Defence Recoveries
    45 – 49
    Defence Tackles
    47.4% – 64.3%
    Defence Interceptions
    9 – 8
    Defence Blocks
    2 – 1
    Defence Clearances
    13 – 8
    Defence Arial Duels
    47.4% – 52.6%
    Defence Blocked crosses
    1 – 0
    Saves
    5 – 3

    So now I can compare both friendly games stats, France vs Italy and Argentina vs Italy given that both Argentina and France played against Italy in a world cup year like a month and a half apart, it’s clear Argentina put on a more dominance performance against a stronger and experience Italian national team compare to Roberto Mancini new look Italian national team that featured against France.

    Moreover, Argentina didn’t even play against Italy with their officially announced final 23-man world cup squad. Argentina was more dominant against Italy (despite having like six players in the starting XI with less than 12 international caps between themselves) compare to France vs Italy; Argentina had more possession in the attacking third, more overall possession, more key passes, more shots on target, more shots on goal, more clear cut chances, more passes, more saves made by Buffon/goalkeeper, more dribbles and was overall better defensively. France also got a fake penalty against Itlay, the score line should have been 2-1 or even a tie if not for the dubious pk decision. The media exaggerate this current France national team way too much, no doubt France has talented players, but for me, this is an overhyped and overrated French team especially Paul Pogba, the definition of overrated! And to take it even further, the media saying Kylian Mbappé is similar to Pele! The last quality and discipline French team was the one from the 2006 world cup, this current 2018 French team compare to 2006 version is like comparing apples to oranges… Peru will defeat France at the 2018 world cup, people are underestimating Peru because they don’t have loads of players in the EPL, just look at the teams they played against in CONMEBOL, heck, Peru even eliminated Chile from the 2018 world cup. Peru already defeated Croatia, Iceland and Scotland (this week) without their best player Paolo Guerrero whose doping ban have been overturn by the Swiss tribunal. Peru will match up perfectly against France just as Colombia did several weeks ago.

    As for the game against Haiti, there was not much to be said because Argentina was practically in a training session while trying to avoid any serious injuries. Argentina was playing in first gear against Haiti, for people to come on here and say such and such player should be given the nod in the starting XI because of the Haiti game are kidding themselves. Nevertheless, during the first half of any football game, the teams are fresher and stronger compare to the second half, so to compare a player performance from the second half to another player from the first half is never fair. During a first half, your opponent can put 10 players behind the ball making the game more complicated. If you your team score going into the second half, the opponent will approach the game differently because they’ve already conceded, and the longer the game goes on the more the opponent will get tired from chasing the ball around the filed hence making it easier for the newly subs to make an impact. I doubt Bale would have had the same impact against Liverpool if he started from the beginning in the UCL. When Bale came on as a substitute for Real Madrid, the Liverpool players were mostly fatigue which made Bale presence in the second half all the more impactful.

    Overall, I like what I saw against Haiti, the team seem in good spirit, the fans were behind the team and the whole camp looked happy. Argentina current training camp is more important than any friendly game the team can play between now and the world cup. The team already played against Italy, Spain and Haiti (and will play against Israel in a week’s time), plus the roster will have trained almost a month with all the players together before the start of the 2018world cup, this will be more than enough to get the overall team well prepared for the opening game against Iceland and beyond. The main thing for Argentina right now is team preparation and peaking game after game when the world cup starts, nothing else counts.

    This is will be one of the best Argentina world cup squad in a very long time, even better than the 2014 world cup class (one of my favorite Argentina team). And for a very long time (with the exception of Sabella) Argentina have finally hire a top quality coach in Sampaoli who has the coaching ability to guide this current Argentina national team on their way to a successful 2018 world cup campaign.

    If Sampaoli can do for Argentina what he did with Chile and Sevilla, both of whom didn’t even possess the same amount of talent and quality Sampaoli currently has with Argentina right now makes me even more excited about the world cup.

    Some people might say, so what did Sampaoli achieve at Sevilla? Well, for his first season in Europe, Sampaoli made sure Sevilla qualify for the 2017/2018 UCL. During the first half of the 2016/2017 La Liga season, Sevilla was the best team in Spain per games won, draw and loss when comparing to Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid, and this was at the midpoint of the season when everyone already played at least 19 games. At the mid-way point, Sevilla chance of winning La Liga was pretty decent per the pundits and journalist, but after the winter break, Sevilla was unable to keep pace with both Real Madrid and Barcelona in the league, and at the end of the day, Sevilla resources and finance wasn’t enough to keep pace with their prestigious La Liga rivals. If Sampaoli can out maneuver his competition in La Liga for the first 19 games in the league, then I don’t see any reason why he (Sampaoli) can’t do it with a Messi led Argentina team at the 2018 world cup in seven games. This is why the Argentina national team spending all this time together is such a good thing for the overall group.

    As I recall earlier, Peru defeated Croatia in a 2018 world cup preparation game, now Brazil will play against this same Croatian team this weekend and will probably win by 3-4 goals then the pro Brazil world cup media outlets will continue to drool over them. ‘’See I told you folks, world cup favorites, Brazil defeating Croatia proved we made the right call on Brazil winning the 2018.’’ Surely no one claim Peru was a favorite when they won over Croatia earlier?

    “We all go to Russia for the same reason, the World Cup is the dream of us, of the country. We are not candidates but we are very good, training and improving day by day.

    “We have good players and we are getting stronger to fight as an equal with anyone.” [Lionel Mesi]

    Messi is finally embracing the captaincy of the Argentina national team!! Spoken like a true leader. A lot of media outlets and fans are writing off Argentina in 2018, and what more than to use these same people words to motivate the Argentina national team.

    (Just a thought)
    ‘’Lo Celso the pundits in the media say we’re not favorites, that we’re not contenders, but you and me, and the rest of our team mates will prove all our critics wrong. I believe in you, the coach believes in you, and your team mates believe in you. let’s go win this world cup for our country and all the Albiceleste fans around the world.’’ [ This should be Messi speech to every player on the team – you can change Lo Celso name with any other player on the roster].

    At the end of the day, no one can take away what Argentina represent in football, the history they have at the world cup and the great players the country have produce decades on top of decades.

    When it comes to the Argentina national team, some fans are stuck in a state of melancholy, and there is nothing that can be done or said to change these people unless Argentina win the world cup title. All this is understandable though.

    And finally, a lot of pundits and fans are prematurely selecting teams who they believe will play against each other in the latter stages at the 2018 world cup which is very one sided because they’re making these rankings base on the names of the countries and the names on the team sheets. In the last six world cup editions, (I believe 2006 was the only case where the tournament didn’t have any major surprises) there have always been small football teams that come of age that nobody talks about prior to the tournament. At the 1994 world cup small teams like Bulgaria, Sweden and Romania made it to the semifinal and quarterfinal respectively. At the 1998 world cup, first time world cup debutant Croatia made the semifinal and Denmark made the quarterfinal. At the 2002 world cup, South Korea and Turkey made the semifinal. And even at the 2006 world cup Ukraine made the quarterfinal. At the 2010 world cup, Uruguay made the semifinal to everyone surprise given they needed to go through plays off in order to qualify for the 2010 world cup, Paraguay and Ghana also made the quarterfinals. At the 2014 world cup, Costa Rica and Colombia made the quarterfinals and Algeria was surprisingly good against Germany in the round of 16 knockout game. So when I make my predictions, I do it on this basis that there will always be surprises at the 2018 world cup like the previous six editions before.

      • Malabari Albiceleste , broh italy did change their coach but they were fielding a better team against us than vs france.
        Insigne
        Immobile
        Buffon
        Verratti
        Jorginho were playing against us. While there were none of the above mentioned players except jorginho played against france. . Teams like france,germany and brazil is converting their opportunities . But we are not …
        In terms of passing game and possession we dominate even spain. .
        Just need to work on that finishing
        By the way are you from kerala ?

  5. #happy to see Germany lost#
    Germany lost 2-1 to Austria

    But that was their experimental play..
    They will never play in such a manner against big teams
    But if they allow opponents to play they will be beatable within 90 minutes …
    Like today
    Austria players played their heart out
    Young Germans made mistakes …

    • After having a look at Nigeria
      I enjoyed Germans loss
      And now i will take a look at Icelanders..
      Full night football
      Just practicing for WC

  6. Germany was disappointing against Austria. France were very impressive against Italy. They have so much speed up front that they will cause trouble for everyone. Definitely a contender.

  7. It’s good to remember we started the last world cup very poor, in fact we could have lost any of our first 4 games, it was only against Belgium when we started to like a team able to win the World Cup.

    If we can develop in the same fashion this time around we can win it, the difference is our first 3 or 4 games are not going to be easy like last time… in any case I hope we have a tournament we can be happy about.

  8. from what i saw in the game Nigeria- England our team don t have to afraid anything from Nigerians. if we play our game we will win. in less than 2 hours for all those want to spy Iceland exist friendly game against Norway.

  9. Watching Nigeria game, I found that, in addition to their lack of creativity, they are also quite weak in corner. I think Argentina should exploit that.

    Their strength must be high pressing with powerful players, very similar to 90s French team.

    Another point to mention is that the best English players in this match they all play under Pochettino. What a chance to have him as coach.

  10. I have something to share. This is silly, i know, but I made it only because, I have to read some fellow-Ultra Pessimistic- fans here commenting that, Team Argentina is pathetic enough to be Defeated in all 3 group stage games. Or the other one who thinks We will concede 3_4 goals in every game & are capable enough to score maximum 1 goal per game…

    This is just based on Paper numbers, which “those” guys mostly use, to call our team pathetic. (Team is yet to start the tournament)..

    With the level of the “favourites” is more or less remaining the same, (Brazil14 = France,
    Germany 14== Spain &
    Spain14= Brazil, Germany), I’m comparing our own strength difference, both the “paper ones”, just BEFORE 2014 WC & now…
    For example, *Lavezzi had a fantastic tournament, but I’m using what i think was his number before the 14 world cup*

    Players points out of 10…
    2014_____2018

    Romero—– Willy (0)
    Garay — Otamendi (+1)
    F.Fernandez — Fazio (+3)
    Demichellis —-Rojo (+3)
    Zabaleta —-Ansaldi (-1)
    Rojo—– Tagliafico (0)
    Campagnaro —Mercado (+1)
    Basanta —- Acuna (+1)

    +(Extra one “Back up” Defender : Salvio)

    Gago —– Lo Celso (+3)
    Masche — Biglia (-3)
    Biglia —- Masche (-1)
    Agusto Fernandez —- Salvio ( +1)
    Enzo Perez —– Banega (0)
    Di Maria —– Di Maria (-1)
    Alvarez —- Lanzini (+2)
    Maxi —- Meza (+2)

    Aguero —-Aguero (+1)
    Higuain — Higuain (0)
    Rodrigo Pala— Dybala (+4)
    Lavezzi — Pavon (+1)
    Messi —- Messi (+2)

    Overall : +19/200 (20outfield players).
    Around : +7/100 (10 possible starters)
    That is around 7% improvement in the starting lineup strength.

    *** (In 2014 WC, we Won 6/7 games.
    & Didn’t concede a single goal in any of the Knockout matches’ regular time)***

    • your point of view is true but team chemistry and Sabela’s tactic were the pluses of 2014 team.

      About pessinism vs optimstim. My take is optimst funs are not lobbying to deny the natural outcomes of football rather trying to counter the exessive cursing of players including Leo. Winning or losing are dictated by so many factors not due to our attitude. Higuein broke the quarter final jinx to the extent he disappointed in finals. shouldn’t we give credit to him despite less service has been offered from the midfields? Icardi & Parades could be notable omissions. But have we ever been grateful to the inclusion of Pavon, Meza, Salvio, Acuna, Armani, Lanzini, Dyabala, Tagliafico & the many more cuts made including Romero?

      We owe this cite to offer an encouraging & constructive comments especially after the anouncement of final 23 than Swearing at players or wishing injury to them. Besides, I don’t think membership or commenting on mundo have been inspired by tournament platforms.

      Respecting ideas being our repugnancy test; Let’s all be behind the team & wish them all best of luck as well!

    • Yes, this is true: individual ratings may be higher than of Sabella’s players but football is team game and so far it seems Sampaoli is behind Sabella in this point.

  11. just for the history like today 2 June of 1986 our team begin the world cup of Mexico with winning South Korea 3-1. 🙂 2 goals Valdano and 1 Ruggeri 🙂 and 2 June of 1978 we start our home world cup with winning Hungary 2-1 🙂 it suppose to be perfect if today we played against Iceland 🙂

  12. @snjv1234

    @waveride is old member here and you really should not learn him how to be Argentina fan. People are diffrent and fans are different with dissimilar mix of optimism/pessimism and so on.

    Everytime when big tournament is back I see here also countless new members with unfamiliar names. THey are not here except big tournaments. There’s only core of people who are here always. I have no problem with these big-tournaments fans if only they do not come here in this holiday times to learn the old or regular members how to be ‘real fan’. Few people is here enough long time to remember that everytime in past tournaments Mundo was rather optimistic while the reality proved the optimism wrong.

    I see fans from South Asia are usually really optimistic while Europeans often more cautious. Just like in real life. The fans here comes from different cultures.

  13. Young fresh blood never gives up, even though it is 4/5:1 due to the result.
    In my opinion Sampaoli has to build the team around Messi with Meza Pavon Lanzini and Salvio.
    Drop names! Higuain Di Maria Rojo Mercado Mascherano Biglia

    Meza was very strong against Spain. For me he is a key player to win the world cup.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qH6tn68Lho

    Lo Celso Lanzini Meza Salvio Tagliafico Caballero (vs Italy secoud half, all have impressed me vs Nigeria Haiti Italy Spain and so on.

    • to give up or not my friend is not matter of age. it is matter of heart and if your mentality is strong. if your heart is like lion whatever age you have you can make the difference. Argentina s jersey is very “heavy”. it is not easy to wear. the most of young players can t carry the heavy. others they can. they should prove it in time. the combination of young and experienced players is the best for our team.

    • I think our team is great, but after watching these clips I think in this game even with no Messi Spain should be disappointed. Cabellero blew it, should have been 3-1 tops. Or more likely 3-2 if Higuain sinks that first one. What a choke artist.

      Another bad thing for us is that Meza, Pavón Di Maria all prefer left side.

      Maybe we go with Pavón start and Meza with extra legs off the bench.

      I think Sampaoli should have gave penalty vs Haiti to Higuain. Get his confidence back.

  14. Argentina vs France World Cup Final on 15th July. Ronaldo lift international trophy against France if Messi win opponent will be the France. Both team are astrologically favourites to win the world cup and both team will not face each other before Final if they topped their group which is logical

    • yes and football can be funny the last time argentina won the worldcup was 32 years ago and the score was 3-2… may be argentina can win it again. and also everytime germany was won a worldcup the next worldcup has been won by brazil or argentina…
      1954: germany
      1958: brazil
      1974: germany
      1978: argentina
      1990: germany
      1994: brazil
      2014: germany
      2018: argentina by GOD grace

    • Astrological favorites hahahaahahahahahahahahahahahahahshah ha! First god now this bullshit. This is a futbol forum, talk about the round ball and the men playing with it you confused children.

  15. I see comments in this blog more often. I’m from Nepal. As I see , people who write here are very negative minded. If you don’t have any positive to say then don’t write here. If you people were more expert than Sampaoli then you’d be coaching top clubs so stop your nonsense about who is better and what should be the lineup ..How funny ?? lol..

    Just wish and say a good luck to Argentina. This time we want to see them winning the final. Even they loose we are not going to hate them. Don’t be a plastic fan..I’m supporting ARG since I know football and any kind of negativity is not going to change my mind .. You negative minded people are plastic fans..

    • Nobody is a plastic in here. Like you, most of us in here support Argentina since we started watching football simpy because for us Argentina is football! There are also people in here who support our beloved team for years, i support Argentina for two and a half decades and other people older tnan me supporting this team for even longer. It is not about negativity really, it is about that all of us believe that we should at least have one more world cup but after all of this pain throughout all of these years, i wish all the best for our team and i hope that this time is our time.

      So please stop these nonsense about plastic fans especially were refering to people you don’t know.

      Ps: I really like this guy Pavon, they say that he is Caniggia’s successor who is one of my favourite players, it might be sound a bit of exaggeration but i wish he will be that good or even better.

      • Caniggia was a phenomenom! It was not just his excellent finishing as you guys correcty stated but also his superb dribbling and technique combined with his phenomenal speed! Caniggia was and still is among top 10 fastest players ever played the game but i think he is the only one who apart from his phenomenal speed could combine world class technique, dribbling and finishing. Again, i don’t compare “el pajaro” to Pavon, how could i do that, i just said that some people are stating that Pavon has some similarities to “el pajaro”. Despite that Argentina has introduced legendary phenomenal players to world football throughout all of these years, i am personally still awaiting for a player to be Caniggia’s successor. He is among my favourite top 5 players of all time, together with Maradona, Messi, Batistuta and Redondo and he was massively underestimated by the media just because he vever was among medias’ and football politicians’ beloved boys, he is one of Maradona’s best friend after all!

        Dadir, thank you very much for Caniggia’s interview you attached in your post!

    • yes i have see that many fans here are speaking negative for the team and some other speaking very bad for some players. i don t like this but i want to believe that when the world cup begins they will stop the complaining and support whoever from 23 players play inside the pitch wearing the albiceleste jersey.

  16. For Argentina everyone is talking about Lanzini Meza Lo Celso Pavon etc.No doubt they are good players but I think it is Ansaldi who will shine in world cup.He will be crucial for Argentina.Although he will play out of position he will shine.Salvio is good back up for him.We should use Salvio at right midfield and Lanzini at left midfield.It will give strength to our defense as Salvio is a player with high work rate.Di maria should be used as sub he needs to clear his understandings about basics of football.He always goes for individual glory in spite of being weak in finishing move.

    • I agree with you. But who will be the first choice for Sampaoli? I think it will be Salvio and Ansaldi is seen as a substitute for him. Salvio has been there right from the beginning since Sampaoli took over. Let us see whether Ansaldi can get some valuable playing time in the next match.

      • Salvio is surely a sub starter gonna be Mercado or ansaldi who sampaoli will prefer I don’t know.

    • I also feel this is our best midfield line-up.
      Lanzini – locelso- salvio.
      whoever plays DM can patrol behind them.
      Pavon or dimaria can come for lanzini.
      Meza for salvio or locelso.

  17. France is not a threat for Argentina.Their all players are young and inexperienced. They do not have world cup experience.They will be eliminated just like Tottenham.Tottenham were less experienced than Juventus in CL so they got eliminated.Experience always counts because it lessens confusion.Demble Pogba Mbappe Griezaman all are young and inexperienced. World cup is difficult tournament.

    • Pogba was the2014 world cup best young player winner. They are young – but definitely have the right big game experience from their big clubs, euro 16 etc. The more I look at that squad, I think they look the strongest. Look at how they outmuscled Germany in euro2016 semis & it was pure bad luck they lost to Portugal in finals( like Argentina’s copa 16 loss when they were a better team by a mile ). Even with payet & kosceinly injuries , they look strong & good depth.

  18. i find funny to see predictions so i will say my dream mixed with little logic inside. just for fun:-)
    so we will win the world cup by finish 1st in group after we will win Denmark in second round. in quarter finals we will win Portugal and in semi final Germany. Messi will lift the cup after win in final Brasil :-):-):-)

  19. I have watched France – Italy as well and I must to say once again – this ultra physical France team will be extremely tough oponent for every team. I saw them playing the game very easily without much sacrifice to avoid injury.

    For the reason I expected players like Battaglia in our team because I doubt our short midfield (Lanzini, Lo Celso, Mascherano/Biglia, Di Maria) can handle such basketball-like team of France.

    • Sorry to disappoint you this France side can’t beat any of the top sides Argentina Brazil Germany spain.they even will struggle to beat Peru in their group.I don’t think they are that special.

  20. It’s really funny to see predictions poping out here. Someone said captain born during 1986-87 would lift the cup. Source of this prediction seems to be Greenstone Lobo. I vividly remember him predicted before Germany Vs Argentina final in his article in Hindustan Times that Lahm doesn’t have favourable stars and auspicious planetary position to win world cup. Hours later I saw Lahm lifting the trophy. I don’t see any sense in predictions. This time I have this strong feeling that Argentina is gonna lift the cup. Not a single different thought..

    • this about predictions from stars is really komik every world cup:-) others speaking for magical animals that choose the winners like one octapus in past world cup etc. it is very komik to hear those predictions and it is even more komik that some people believes them:-):-):-)

  21. Soccer is the only sport in which you can do everything badly and get good results, or on the contrary you can do everything well and get bad results. the French team look very strong, but inconsistent (France 2 vs Colombia 3) when they are leading or even game but we don’t know the world stage if they manage when they are down. Spain beat Argentina 6-1 doesn’t mean they are great, Argentina will defeat Spain if they meet in the world cup. 2006 Italy ranked 12 was champion while all prediction were England or Brazil, 2010 all prediction were Germany, Span won, 2014 all prediction were Brazil, Germany won.

  22. Some competitive updates on top contenders.
    1) France looked very sharp in yesterday’s win against Italy. If deschamp manages to maintain the team Chemistry , they are a super solid contender for cup
    2) brazil playing Croatia & Austria in last friendlies. They are preparing for Switzerland who is a much improved side. Neymar expected to be in bench . Importantly renato Augusto has an injury. He is a very vital cog in that’s system & coach may be forced to force for fernandinho if Augusto takes time. All is it well there.
    3) Germany also playing Austria. Neuer will play for low to take final call. Low is getting on reus ( brilliant player – but glass like gago).
    While my heart will always say argentina, brain says spain or France this time

    • France looked quite mediocre yesterday.their defense was struggling and midfield was average.only top 3 griezman dembele mbappe looked super but Italy defense is quite weak any decent team can knock France out.

      • wow. not sure which game u saw yesterday!!! They didn’t play Varane ,Sidibe or Mendy in defense & still was solid . Lloris is always an average keeper & nothing spectacular if you compare against Ter Stegan, Allison, DeGea
        For me they are a strong contender.

        • also look at the average age of the team . Most of the key players are less than 25-26. Peak of their game. Its for Deschamp to screw it & lose the cup. Even Euro 16 they should have won after beating Germany .The only issue France has is the player egos which Deschamp seem to be controlling . I wouldn’t want Argentina running into France early for sure.

    • You’re correct. France looks like a force to be reckoned with. I watched the whole game live ydy. Kante and their pacey attackers ( mbappe and griezman) look like a handful to contain even for world class defenders. A blend of physicality, skill and fluidity in their play that would be tough for any team to handle. Wouldnt be surprised at all if they knock brazil out in the semis.

      • Add Belgium ‘n Brazil to the list of teams oozing a scorn against any defense. Yet, none would match our striking force. Mbape ‘n Griezman combined posses less threat than Messi alone. RFB & 5, unfit Biglia + aged Maschie, seems our weakest link.

        • Yes belgium looks very dangerous on paper too. Kante looks galaxies high up in terms of quality as compared to our no 5s. Thank god Lo celso would be there to cover some grounds.

        • Belgium is again fantastic in terms of talent. But somehow not succeeded as a team. Another golden generation that needs to fire now! Lets see what Roberto Martinez can do here as the ingredients are perfect for a classy cuisine!! I am a big fan of DeBryune & want to see him do well.

          • this weekend Croatia is playing Brazil & Nigeria is playing England. I am hoping to see these matches in some good link to see how are group stage competitors are faring up.

  23. I don’t know if we can resist in very big games but I really like the idea of having Lanzini and LoCelso in the midfield. This was our weakness, our midfield was slow with no creativity. Now I can see a very dynamic, fast players like Lanzini and a very intelligent and smart Locelso. VAMOS ARGENTINA

    • Lanzini locelso dimaria or lanzini locelso Meza or banega locelso lanzini sampaoli should rotate like this no need to play same formation every game

  24. If anybody works the World Cup brackets our best path to get to the finals is to end up second in our group. We would face France and Brazil most likely rather than Germany and Spain. Thoughts anyone???

        • I would rather prefer playing against Spain and Germany instead of playing against Portugal and the likes of them. Big teams can play open and attacking game with Argentina while the small teams always park 🚌 against Argentina which makes very difficult to beat them.

        • England can t kick nobody s ass my friend but to be honest i want them so much to play against. i want them really so much. we have so many unsolved issues with them….

      • Soccer is the only sport in which you can do everything badly and get good results, or on the contrary you can do everything well and get bad results. Iceland and Croatia put a great performance against Spain and France but Peru and Columbia beat them; when it come to the top 8 Latin America soccer’s country vs any European team no one know.

    • I don’t think so.Brazil and France is quite tough.that’s not winners mentality.look at real Madrid this champions league campaign.2nd round psg quarters juventus semis bayern final Liverpool.each and every match was tough.while Barcelona 2nd round an average Chelsea and quarters Roma but still knocked out

      • My gut is that brazil may not have a great world cup. It’s tough for neymar to step in after 4-5 months & get to top form. They are very dependent on neymar. If neymar flops, defensively they r good – but will struggle to score.

  25. Esta es la banda loca de la Argentina
    La que de Las Malvinas nunca se olvida
    La que deja la vida por los colores
    La que le pide huevo a los jugadores

    PARA SER CAMPEONES !!!

  26. Keep aside old slow (Mascheranho and Higuain). Sampaoli must focus on selected all young players and with Messi and Aguero
    3 important thing Argentina must sort out immediately.
    *How to tackle counter attacks with great speed and skills.
    *How to clear high balls when corner kicks or free kicks will be there. And better positioning and marking opposition to avoid any risks.
    *Certainly Messi, Aguero, Di Maria, Pavon, Dybala, Lanzini must have to practice a lot in (FIRST DRIBBLE 2/3 PLAYERS AND THEN TAKE LONG RANGE SHOTS)

    This practice will make Argentina to go up to the final. In the final only thing will be to keep calm the nerves and the confidence and eagerness will do the rest in final.

  27. Need help locating an Argentina Watch Party in Orlando, FL….The excitement of the world cup already has me crazy…I can barely work from reading article after article….Vamos Argentina!! Vamos Lord Messi!!!

  28. Willy Caballero:

    He reminds me a bit of Manuel Neuer.

    vs Ronaldo
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_71PnlPZ80

    Willy Caballero – Best Saves 2017/18
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uhu5pBHOG90

    Penalty Shootout: Willy Caballero
    Chelsea vs Norwich City 1-1 (5-3) • FULL PENALTY SHOOTOUT

    Willy Caballero vs Italia – Debut en la Selección Argentina – Amistoso 23/03/2018
    How smart he played in the second half vs Italy.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=76SP2UxC0Bk

    AND FINALLY THE BEST OF Willy Caballero.

    Ronaldo (Freekick, Penalty, 100% Chance) Di Maria (at hist best) Rooney Pogba (90% Chance) Coutinho (Penalty) Neymar (Freekick, Penalty) Falcoa (Penalty)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8xkgKCx6q0g

    OMG, Willy is the best Keeper, far better than Romero.

    • He was a great goalie in his prime but he is past his prime and now in awful form and that’s the concern specially now he lacks confidence and prone to committing mistakes that can cost us.

      • At least 2 was his fault.he was nit even trying to save them.one goal came from his miss pass.plus he is awful this season for Chelsea whenever he played

    • To me cabellero succeeding at knockout stage of cup will be like a rocky balboa movie script. No one gives him a chance currently bcos he is seen as a spent force with age & being a sub keeper at premier league. It will be sensational if he stands tall in later stages like goyochoea at 90italia. For old time sake I wish cabellero & masche having a great final run in the matches that matter

    • Messi and few other players of our team knows that it is their last chance to succeed something big something glorious something that will write their names in the book of history FOREVER . so they will give their blood inside the pitch for that. they will “die” inside pitch because as i said it is their LAST CHANCE. if you ask me i believe mentally they are prepering their selves more than one year.

      • In the case of Messi, Di Maria, Rojo, Mascherano and Romero (no longer on the team) I’d say 4 years. I mean… To get so close but lose on injuries is so heartbreaking. Those guys are bonded by that game, there is no way they forget any of it. Not to mention the copas after.

        THIS IS IT… lay it down or say goodbye to the dream.

        Messi looks like he’s going into the tournament in beast mode. That play with Pavon I shook my head it looked like a barcelona highlight.

        Also would mention that I think Pavon looks awesome! Many people here saying to start him instead of Di Maria. I disagree. Pavon will come on at 60th minute and disrupt a defense. I think his sparkle will wear off over a whole game. Also I think it will be great to have Di Maria and Pavon both getting minutes every game but not over playing.

        Also hoping for Dybala to get some minutes each game but I doubt Sampaoli pulls Messi unless it’s 4-0 or something. Dybala is the utility attacking player, probably why he made the team but he may get no minutes I think. Possibly sub for Aguero but I’d think that Higuain may earn that right if there is a good lead. Not sure if he can play winger with Messi or not.

        Reading lots of people saying Lanzini had a bad match, I disagree he looked good not great. Lo Celso and Pavon were my favourite after Messi.

        Defense wasn’t tested at all. I hope Israel is able to get a bit closer. Looks like Fazio lost the start

        Cabellero came out way too far that one ball, but I think he may been bored. Argentina should play Israel with 9 men to make it more interesting

        • Accuracy is the key attribute of Pavon’s game which Dimaria clearly lacks. Yes Dimaria is a better dribbler but so was Robino from Brasil. Having Dimaria start over Pavon means plenty of wasteful passing and crossing . It not only means wasted opportunities but also losing posession that could lead to us conceding goals. Inexperienced Pavon might not be able to handle such pressure in a world cup knockout game where we are a goal down and he is sent in with 30 mins left . I can see Sampaoli dropping Dimaria after first 2 games and Pavon getting the nod in the starting XI. Remember how Meza puzzled the Spanish team I expect the same with Pavon. Dimaria, Banega, Mascherano and Higuain they all should be subs. Dybala should be Aguero’s direct sub not Higuain. Messi playing as No9 and Dybala behind him after Aguero gets subbed.

          • I don’t like pavon.i think he will struggle against a decent team.I would rather play lanzini at left locelso in middle and Meza or salvio in right if dimaria doesn’t play.i wished centurion was there.we need midfielders to maintain the position.I hope Meza gets the nod ahead to pavon.pavon doesn’t defend and his ball control is quite scrappy.

          • With Lio you know your left winger is going to get the ball a lot. Its a natural tendency for a left footed player to curl a pass to the left than the right. The question is do you trust Di Maria to use those passes?

            I don’t.

            And I like what you said about this rotation. Let Di Maria start for the fist couple of matches and get Pavon the 20 minutes each matches. Pavon’s first touch is bad, but he’s fast and he’s at least twice more accurate than Di Maria. Di Maria has totally forgot how to pass the ball (which is unbelievable since he was pretty darn bad at that).

            Having said that, Pavon needs to improve his discipline. I saw him throwing out two footed challenges VS Haiti like he was in a Primera game. During the world cup he must remember that he needs to be NOT do anything like that. Those are red cards in the rest of the world.

  29. Meza-Pavon-Lanzini will be the key to us. Lanzini for sure he will be in the starting XI. People expected from him a lot more but don’t forget that he played in a deeper position than usually so he couldn’t take too much risk. His role is important because he allows the team to switch from 4231 to 433. Lo Celso-Lanzini will be the brain of this team. Both of them can create and defend.

    I don’t know what Sampaoli thinks but based on his previous performance, Pavon should be in the starting XI. I like the idea of using him as left forward next to Messi as the right one. Just them 2 upfront, without any traditional striker. Of course he can be used as winger but his input will be so much limited. He is a better fit than Dybala to be Messi’s partner in attack. Aguero may take back his forward position during the game if necessary.

    As I prefer to see Pavon as forward, maybe Acuna stronger defensively as he started his carer as left winger. but in terms of creativity, I think Meza is stronger. Di Maria, that I like a lot, gotta fight hard to win his place back.

    • I totally agree with you. Dimaria should be Pavon’s sub not the other way around. His wayward passing,shooting and crossing got to stop. He has wasted millions of chances already. Inorder to overcome the drought of goals our strikers are facing from last few years we need a creative midfield . We can’t count on Dimaria’s amazing skills only!!

      Lanzini couldn’t deliver in the last match as expected but yes i agree again it will be too early to write him off based on a performance of just one game. I don’t have doubt on his attacking skills its his CM role which raises eyebrows. But Sampaoli sees something in him which is why he was picked over everyone’s favorite Enzo who had never disappointed us. However we also have Meza who against full strength Spain team was amazing. Spanish midfield and defense were having difficulty handling this guy. Spain has a good team but they are no Madrid. If our midfield can provide good service to our attackers don’t force Messi to drop down deep to collect the ball like during Sabella’s days and provide cover to our defense by keeping the posession of the ball we will be a hell of an opponent. Messi was being used as a No10 in the last 2 world cups. Sampaoli seems to use him as a false 9 which is exactly what doctor ordered.

      I know good defense wins the World cup but goals is the answer to our weak defense. Scoring first will be crucial in the knockout matches. It will be very hard to beat us if we score first. Messi and Aguero upfront would be worst nightmare of any defense whose team is a goal down. That is why keeping Aguero fit till the end is key. Fit Aguero can destroy any defense,he can score from any tight angle. His injury is what cost us the last world cup. Pundits are predicting our early exits some are saying we won’t even get out of the group. Lets all pray our opponent coaches are thinking the same.

      • we have decent defence, they will do the job. Argentinean defenders are not hyped unlike brazil.brazil is the currently the darling of pundits because they beat c team of germany by fluke .most of brazil defenders are in mid 30s and let us see till how many matches their defence will sustain. they have a easy route till semifinal because of draw. people are underestimating argentina because of spain match. world cup is a different beast , holland performance while coming to world cup 2014 was subdued but they hit the world cup by storm.

  30. Why don’t they practice double shift everyday??? Only today and Monday they will practice double shift.we need more practice and we lost 3 days of practice due to the Israel match happening in Israel

    • because it is end of season. most of our players have played already many matches this season and if we do every day double shifts exist danger for serious injuries before world cup.

      • I don’t think sampaoli pushing the players hard enough in the training.from the training videos we can see the training sessions are quite relaxed lack intensity.so why no double shift?? We don’t have enough time specially we have to improve defensively in such a short period of time.with low intensity training I don’t think anybody can be injured even if they train for double shifts.i would have been ok with single training session if they train hard with high intensity but seems like it’s not the case here

      • Practicing more will build more chemistry.we lack in chemistry department.in Haiti match clearly lanzini was confused and not much comfortable with his new position.we need to build a solid defensive understanding and there is nothing can replace hard work in training.we don’t have enough time.at least everyday one shift can be dedicated to defensive drills like practicing defending corners and set pieces closing down the counters intercepting long through balls etc.

        • So you have more coaching experience than Sampoali, Aimar, Messi, Masch and all the other people there with weight?

          They are focused. I am sure they are pacing themselves just right.

          • Exactly lol. Some of us here act as if we’re or we used to be world stars with knowledge that should be utilized by a world class coach. Can we not be overly critical on our coach or his players.

          • if that is the case why do you guys want some certain players?? why u guys criticize when something go wrong?? why u guys post your preferred formation and teams.its a discussion forum and everybody should express their feeling and concerns.no fans has enough experience but they still criticize players and also criticize coaches.its nothing new.not like sampaoli and messi will see our comments.i still feel we need to work hard more if we want to be champions but yes sampa has different ideas.

        • @Anuparno; what ever we r seeing in the training videos are just drills; Those are not the actual training videos; There will be tactical drills in closed doors; There won’t be any videos taken; 3 hrs per day is good enough;
          And i believe they will have two different teams & matches will be played for 20 to 30 mins;

          If we do more, the players will be exhausted;

      • but we have to cross the tough group.we have to be in our best form to shut the mouth of those nigerians.

    • Heavy training are usually conducted as part of season, ie after one or two months holiday not once a gruelling season is over. Heavy training at the end of a season is not recommended as it may cause injury. In fact, some coaches are blamed for repeated injuries in their team due to heavy training load.

  31. one new day begins and one new month. 15 days left to see my beloved albiceleste beginning one more world cup. Vamos Argentina vamos a ganar!!!

Comments are closed.