Former Argentina coach Jorge SAMPAOLI talks World Cup, Lionel MESSI, AFA, more


Former Argentina coach Jorge SAMPAOLI spoke about managing the team, coaching Lionel MESSI, the World Cup, the AFA and much more.

In an interview with Marca, the Jorge SAMPAOLI had nothing but good things to say about current AFA president Claudio TAPIA. He also commented on his future. Here’s what he had to say about it all:

“I took some time to analyze my time with the national team, to analyze it after the World Cup. I needed that analyzing to make things clear to myself about my future and that’s why I moved away from the media life. But I didn’t stop going to the movies or having a coffee and to my face, no one criticized me.

“The load that this group had to carry was too heavy. We were all pushed into an obligated path which was too difficult to get the best out of the talent and we suffered in every match.”

Jorge SAMPAOLI’s thoughts on Argentina during the World Cup and while players were left out of the team:

“We were with an immediate need of winning and there were other players (coming) from Brazil (2014 World Cup), with a final behind them. And short term, I had bet on them. We had a map of 100 players for the short term, medium term and long term. But they cut us off after Russia.

“The World Cup was very premature for us. We qualified and very quickly came Russia. We didn’t have much time for anything, including the option to integrate new players for the future.”

In regards to coaching Lionel MESSI, here’s what SAMPAOLI said:

“Being able to coach MESSI was incredible, especially to see him so committed. He suffered a lot when we didn’t win. The best player in history was very committed. Leo suffered like no one else the impossibility of being (world champion). Having him forces you to have no margin of error when it comes to winning.”

On if Lionel MESSI can win the 2022 World Cup:

“Of course he can be champion. But this needs a process, especially after everything which has happened. It’s to say, if the Copa America isn’t won, you have to keep the process going, don’t break it. Enough of this crazyness of if you don’t win, you’re a loser. And it’s not like that. If you believe it, you could win even if it’s late. But you have to believe.”

In regards to Javier MASCHERANO and others making decisions:

“I took it as an honest decision in order for Argentina to prosper as a group. I looked for every way possible to involve the group, to try and get the players to get the weight of not winning off their shoulders. That anxiety that prevented them from developing individually and collectively. One thing were the training sessions, which were at a very high level and the other were the matches, where we couldn’t maintain our level of play.

“I believe everyone that was there was honest in their contribution. And myself as well. I put a lot of heart into it but it didn’t happen. In terms of adversity, I learned a lot for the future.”

Jorge SAMPAOLI spoke about AFA president Claudio TAPIA and he does not blame him for what happened.

“I am thankful to him for giving me the chance. The president of the AFA, Claudio TAPIA, also lives in a world of obligations, of necessity in which I was also in. What could I possibly claim from Chiqui (TAPIA) if in a way he is also a victim of the Argentine society which exists?”

He also spoke about his future:

“I am basically waiting for a project that would make me enjoy once more my job as a coach. That is to say that I could, from the bench, make changes to a team, colelctively and individually, like I did every where I have went: Peru, Chile, Ecuador, Sevilla… I want to go back to that. Furthermore, I watch a lot of football.

“I would like to go back to coaching and be close to the players, but a national team with the chance of making changes to things, like I did in Chile, is something which also seduces me. I want to analyze well where I go. I had no contacts with anyone from Mexico or Colombia.



    • His soccer coaching background is not open to dispute – it is a fact that he coached many teams and had success. He did not misrepresent himself.

      But one look at his tattoos should have alerted everyone that he could be a complete moron and in over his head with the national team. And then to watch him pacing like an addict on the sidelines. It didn’t instill confidence in my as a fan, and I imagine the players also didn’t want to even look over at the sidelines because they would just have their confidence sucked out of them.

    • For the lazy 🙂

      1) Sergio Romero; Renzo Saravia, Juan Foyth, Walter Kannemann, Nicolás Tagliafico; Maximiliano Meza, Santiago Ascacíbar, Leandro Paredes, Giovani Lo Celso; Franco Cervi y Mauro Icardi.

      2) Gerónimo Rulli; Eduardo Salvio, Germán Pezzella, Ramiro Funes Mori, Marcos Acuña; Roberto Pereyra, Rodrigo Battaglia, Franco Vázquez; Paulo Dybala; Giovanni Simeone y Lautaro Martínez.

      Wish our 2 best goal scorers Dybala and Icardi would be on the same darn team. Either way…Vamos!

  2. Ebo, i totally agree that we should play the same players in both friendlies in terms of continuity as i am screaming for continuity since Sabella’s resignation but seriously now, which continuity are we talking about?? In fact, i personally can’t find a reason of why making these two freaking friendlies anyway since almost all of the players that impressed and being expexcted to form our future team are injured!! So wich continuity are we talking about?

    As ddr1123 correctly said, players have very few games in the nt so their chances of being a part of our team’s permanent core are very limited but still what our players are doing is falling suspiciously like flies (nothing new as i have seen the same with Messi’s generation as well) just before Argentina has a game. And on top of it, we are giving to the shity yellow team more and more chances to beat us so get prepared to see all the brazilian trolls saying afterwards brazil this and brazil that and all the well known horseshit about brazil!

    Man, i am so fucking pissed!!

    • Exactly as you said all players are getting injured can not be a coincidence, even scaloni hinted “IF THEY THEMSELVES LET ME KNOW THAT THEY AREN’T WELL, THERE’S NOTHING MORE FOR ME TO ADD”

      it all shows the whats the spirit of our young generation of argentina to play for his country.
      But here some blind fans of superliga is not not ready to accept it.

      • “it all shows the whats the spirit of our young generation of argentina to play for his country”.

        Totall idiot.

        Yeah, right – it’s best to bring back oldies with their well known passion to play

        • No is saying to bring back oldies but the atitude of our players is not good.
          Anyway you are brainless fan of superliga, so u will never criticize them.
          Dont be like fraud sampoli.

          • First, read the interview properly.

            Such people like you will conceive everything to depreciate some players. From ‘farmers, not being worth even to call up’ to (if they are already in NT and play well) idiotic attempts to deny their will to even play for Argentina what is most ironical giving the old generation ‘passion’.

            What interest had Franco to simulate injury?

            Finally if there will be only one (Bustos/Saravia) local league player against Brazil still he will be blamed for whole team if anything will go wrong.


      • “it all shows the whats the spirit of our young generation of argentina to play for his country.
        But here some blind fans of superliga is not not ready to accept it”.

        What about blind haters?

        You are like embodiment of stupidity third generation.

      • “Exactly as you said all players are getting injured can not be a coincidence, even scaloni hinted “>>IF THEY THEMSELVES LET ME KNOW THAT THEY AREN’T WELL, THERE’S NOTHING MORE FOR ME TO ADD<<”

        You cannot even read properly. What is the hint here?
        There’s nothing suspicious and equivocal here. The next statement is confirmation:


        Your mendacious mind is just looking for akin fake games.

        • Maybe you should have been to suspect something also when A.Correa was injured before September friendlies…

      • With all due respect, I am not gonna go as far as saying they conspire to just drop themselves of the NT and fake injuries because of travel time. makes no sense at all.You need to understand that the NT is their gate to greatness in other big clubs.

    • I understand the frustration, But I think the injured four or five players will have their way back to the NT in no time, and will have minimal impact on how the NT will perform as a whole. I will be really worried if one of our anchor players in midfield or the defense falls, We all seen what Pezzella, ascacibar,battaglia,paredes and Lo Celso did in the past 2 games, Let’s hope they will be in top form and the rest will just be ok. Let’s hope for the best. VAMOS ARGENTINA

  3. Isnt it ironic that the same people that demanded that exact defense and midfield for experience and no time excuses are blaming Sampaoli for doing what they wanted him to.
    Players like biglia, rojo, mascherano, etc were untouchable for them.

    Sampaoli sucked big time as soon as he knew he negotiated he lost and should had stepped down.

    I am worried about coutinho.

    • I’m worried about the midfield.

      Brazil will press you and tey to counter, but if our midfield can hold, we will get our chances as well. Their left side, and our right side will be pretty crucial.

      • We actually beat Brazil in friendly last year, and we’re playing at our worst level at the time. I mean look at Brazil form in qualifier compare to Argentina, yet we still beat them 1-0. Friendly is simply 50:50 game because both team will not afraid to go out and attack and lots of subs will be made throughout the game.

    • Sampaoli never put the same 11 to any single match for second time.

      he never had a plan and sure he didn t had decide even what fucking system he wanted to play.
      No system no tactics no plan no… anything !!!

      NADA !!!

      so it was not matter if he put the young or the experience players.

      the point was not the names.
      the point was he didn t know what he f…ing wanted to do!!!

  4. Mr Sampaoli it is better to avoid speaking anymore about the world cup disaster.
    it is not helping anyone and anything to open this subject.

    i was one of those i believed in you and before world cup i was supporting you strongly.
    now i see how wrong i was. anyway everybody make mistakes.

    Just close your mouth and let time pass.
    stop remind to all Argentinians and Argentina fans your disasterous passing from the national team.

    Personally i can forgive you a lot of mistakes you did but i will never forget and forgive
    that your shit mistakes against Croatia destroy our world cup.

    You and the other “thing” with hands and legs that pretend to be a goalkeeper
    are the responsible for the game with Croatia which destroy everything about our world cup presence.

    so please stop speaking anymore.
    The only you do is to hurt us.

      • Hello my friend.
        thank you.

        you are one of the members here that always is pleasure to read your opinions.
        from last May that i start post in this forum i don t remember i have disagree
        to anything serious from your writings.

  5. Team of the week in Superliga. 4 players of Talleres Cordoba. Just mention about two:

    I don’t know wheter it’s me or anyone other think the same but Tomas Pochettino (once very close of Juventus) is carbon copy of Lo Celso (even the same year born).

    Juan Ramirez – actually I’m a bit surprised the name was not yet mentioned in context of NT possible call ups (long time impressing). If I had to choose someone from superliga for the Pity Martinez position (or AM) it’s only between Ramirez/Vargas.

    • Juan Ramirez impressed me quite a bit a while back but his form has dropped off quite a bit, or maybe Talleres as a team has struggled.
      Right now my eyes remain fixed on Alexi MacAllister and Miranda, who like Ramirez are creative central midfielders although Ramirez is more of a box to box while the former 2 are regista types.

  6. It’s rather better not to talk about the horrors which was 2018 for us. Let’s leave it like that. Dirty laundries will obviously smell. Nothing left to say about it.

    • Wise thought. I think I, and many others, should forget about the past failures-even if the pain is there and does not seem to go away- as it does not help, but prolongs the suffering, and just support the new generation and look for a brighter future.
      Many see the new young players are less worthy of the NT and compare them to the older members, But one thing is certain, those older players “stars” were nothing at the beginning of their careers.All it takes is patience and more playing time.

      • Yuppp patience is the key, even if we losses some meaning less friendlies, still persist with the core young players and experiment with the weaker positions like Goal Keeper, RB, RW, etc etc. Generally Argentine fans r so much demanding, can’t blame them too, waiting for around 25 years.

        And no matter how much we like any certain older player. They also will have to move on. Simple, Time conquers everyone. No player can carry on and on for us.

  7. Off the topic.
    Some here are worried about the next friendlies with the list of injuries of some of the players.
    WE should all get behind the coach and his selection of players, We still have potent midfield.
    Some here think we should play both matches using different players, I think WE should play both matches with the defense and midfield highly identical, not completely but highly identical, switching selections between 2 matches because one is weak and one is strong will affect the chemistry between the players of the core of the team. So I think these players should start both matches
    Pezzella,Bustos,Tagliafico,Ascacibar/Bataglia, Paredes,Dybala,Lo Celso,Icardi
    substitutions are key to successful integration, and I have faith in Scaloni to approach that in a wise manner

    • ” I think WE should play both matches with the defense and midfield highly identical, not completely but highly identical, switching selections between 2 matches because one is weak and one is strong will affect the chemistry between the players of the core of the team”

      Absolutely yes

  8. Guys,
    Posting again after a long time.

    National team coach is a different game altogether. The coaching staff do not get a lot of days to prepare and practice. That happens at club level. Even worse for countries like Brazil and Argentina who have star players all over Europe and then assemble over 2-3 days to play a game. After this cycle you play a tournament for one month at max – 7 games. That’s the game. Not everyone is cut for this.

    You need a coach, who knows how not to lose. Stay alive. Live another day. If you are ahead, fight for your life. In my mind the NT coach needs to play a simple formation. If you say to a professional player that we are going to play 442 or 4231 or 433, I think everyone knows the role they have to play.

    It is more important to study the opponent and plan to nullify them and understand where the threats will come from. They key is to learn quickly. Sabella won Nigeria game 3-2. What he saw was that the defense is fragile – conceded goal against Serbia, Romero was heroic against Iran and 2 against Nigeria. After that, hardly any scope to score against Argentina. He adopted quickly and defended for life.

    I saw Brazil is in doldrums in hands of Dunga. Tite comes and transforms quickly. I know some of you will say he is here for long, but if you go back, he pretty much turned around the performance from game 1, which allowed this long tenure. If Scaloni is the NT kind, then I will just keep him.

    • Some of the wisest words I read here. Sometimes I think playing football is like driving a car, You don’t drive the car with your foot on the gas all the time, and always pay attention to other drivers in the road, You can be safe 90% of the time if you just pay attention to other drivers on the road.

    • “It is more important to study the opponent and plan to nullify them and understand where the threats will come from.”
      And here you have it guys, We were nullified by most of our opponents because they know where the danger was coming from. When all our coaches used Messi to be our only weapon, we became predictable! all they have to do is cut the ball from reaching him, and that’s what happened exactly. over reliance on Messi was a huge mistake, by the fans, the players, the coaches and even Messi himself.

  9. People wise after event.

    It’s easy now to be better than Sampaoli and say what he did wrong but we should ask ourselves wheter the mistakes were so clear for us before we were kicekd out by France. How consequent and consistent in opinions we are?

    Personally I was not impressed by first game under Sampaoli against Brazil (unlike most people here), you may see somewhere there my opinons. I was not impressed later. I was reapeating again and again my predictions for WC: “1/8. At best quarter final. With possible group stage problems”. So I was not rather wrong and not surprised at all.

    Still and despite that I can’t be so tenacious with Sampaoli critic. He made evident mistakes, of course. With giving the team to Messi above all. But just try to remember that a lot of people here before Nigeria/France game was ready to believe in the desperate advices of few known demagogue members that best tactic for this team will be really surround Messi with his best friends and give him the pleasure and comfort.

    Don’t be wise after event.
    Sampaoli’s mistakes are now evident. Now – after event.
    Maybe if he really had more times. FInally, as I said that many times, I can’t really believe that among last 5 coaches (Batista, Sabella, Martino, Bauza, Sampaoli) only Sabella was good. There are also other (than poor coaches themselves) reasons we changed so much diametrically our opinions about them within the time they started the job and ended it. I remember the first opinions (just after they were appointed) very well. It was entihousiastic. Maybe it’s not coincidence only Sabella out of the 5 got more time with NT.

    Still I think some people should not change their accounts so often. Here is very few people who continue for years under the same account. Sometimes it looks like people need the new account to refresh self-believe after their own false predictions. We need basic Who is who and little responsibility, coninuity with our own opinions.

    • You know I agree with you on most of your ideas -like most here- about the plans for the future of the NT.
      But I think it was obvious the short comings of Sampaoli, right from the first qualifier, and more clear the first match of the WC, and definitely in Croatia game, and decisively in the first 10 minutes of France match. So it’s not the after event, I was screaming my lungs out first 10 minutes of that game to close the Mbappe/Griezman highway, I got so pissed that I did not watch the game after French 2nd goal. WE HAD THE GAME IN THE BAG!
      You might disagree, but the truth of the matter, it was not conceivable to just comprehend -at that moment-what Sampaoli was doing with his players.

    • There were lots reasons for decacle in WC apart from sampoli.
      Romero and lanzini injury.
      Cabellero mistake, nothing was going well after iceland match.

      • One thing that people don’t talk about, Messi’s penalty miss against Iceland was a huge set back for him and the team, If he scored that penalty things would have played out differently later in the WC. He should not have taken that penalty, He was weak mentally and should not have taken it. Messi is not invincible as most portray him.

        • Well, set back or not , he recovered in third game and scored brilliant goal. He hit the post few minutes later with his freekick. Everyone started to look confident but then the ref gave a weak penalty goal for Nigeria which change the complexion of the game.

          Messi had 2 direct assists against France, even run pass 3 France players at one point but conceided 4 goals certainly Messi’s fault , right?

          Messi had 1 goal + 2 assists in his last 2 games so he did recovered while CR who started with a bang had no goal or assist in his last 2 games. Its not just mentallity, luck and team performance as a whole play a big roles.

          Maradona made 1 assist against Brazil in 1990, but we conceided zero so he came out as a hero. Messi made 2 assists , we conceided 4 and lost, he was criticized for not being good enough? no logic.

          • I never blamed Messi and say our failure is his fault. If you have followed my comments past and present, you would see that. but I say it as it is. Messi in his bad day, is always good enough compared to other players.

    • I think Tata Martino was way better than Sabella. He introduced Gaitan, Icardi, Dybala, Lamela, Pastore, Pereyra, Agusto Fernandez, Roncaglia, Casco, Maidana, Kranevitter, Funes Mori, Cuesta, Manucella brought back Banega, Tevez and played attacking, high pressing football with great possession and direct attacking style. He should have stayed, Argentina would have played beautiful football and I hope he comes back.

    • If that was aimed at me @gonzalo-pity-martinez , here’s the thing. This is my second account in this site. But that was’nt meant to get “Kudos” or troll anyone. I’ve been here since post 2010 WC and had been here semi active till Copa 2015. I used “Forever Batigol” username then and continue to use the same “Batigol” but “batigol-gaucho” now coz I’ve stopped visiting this site and commenting for 3 years until this WC and apparently I forgot my 1st account details. So I had to create a new one. That’s it. It’s not for anyone’s endorsement or Kudos. You’ve mistaken me for some here who create/created multiple accounts/parody accounts to give Kudos and praise himself.

      My views and stance are exactly the same as was before if you remember. Criticized clueless Batista, Sabella for his lack of experimenting and odd selection and lack of Plan B if Fab 4 failed and Tata from day 1.

      Have big respect to Johnny(where is he?), Pablo D, GhostDeini, Richard, Chainsaw, Mammoun, Mafioso, Istiaque,Gonzalo,Dfox and admins Roy, John, Seba, Juli…I may have obviously missed other senior members too. I can’t just recall all at once. I forgot to add the kudos king Kidulthood too.

      I don’t have to prove anything to anyone and don’t need anyone’s endorsements. This is just to clear the misunderstanding. Cheers!

    • Even if it was Messi’s and Mascherano’s team, shutting down Mbappe and Griezmann should have been accomplished if the defenders fell back, even better have Mascherano and Biglia playing double ‘5’ after Argentina’s 2-1 lead with Aguero or Povon upfront playing on counter attack. Messi could even be substituted for Dybala or LO Celso after the 2-1 lead, think about it for a moment, you will see it was Sampaoli’s total decision to keep attacking with a high defense line.
      When the bus gets into an accident, you don’t blame the passengers. The blame is squarely on the driver, regardless.
      Argentina with Bauza could have beaten France. Sampaoli might be a good offensive coach, but he IS NOT a coach who can adapt to different situations.

      • @ebo bro i don’t mean that way
        You re right buaze team will beat
        That France team.. but I’m not only
        Talking about that match
        I can’t put everything in writting
        But one thing i want you to know
        I love masch and messi no player
        Give Argentina what messi and masch gave that team however
        Mascherano overstayed should have
        Quit after 2016 messi should have
        Been bit strong and selfish too
        ‘coz he have been loyal too much
        For some players.. by the way
        I like your argument i have big respect for you and i know you re Argentina Supporter like me

        • You know, bro. I have the utmost respect for you,too. and @gonzalo along with most of the members here, We might differ in small details, but We both want the best for Argentina. Maybe I am still suffering for the failure in the last WC.

      • I couldn’t agree more @ Ebo. This French team could have been stopped. A proper coach would have parked the bus after leading 2-1 and scored another on counter. This world cup was easiest world cup to win after 2002. FCUK YOU FRAUD BALDY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. And the worst thing is he was already warned by nigeria and spain that your defence is thrash. Still that arrogant and ignorant fraud sampoli didnt take care of that.

  11. Guys I think we should avoid this topic since it’s not going to help the healing process. That world World Cup disaster still hunting Argentina fans, the best thing is to move on, think about the future.

    • Agree with you it will not help the healing process and let’s look at the future. but for millions of Argentina fans, It is a never healing wound. But I think the future will bring success with the younger generation. ARGENTINA IS HUNGRY.
      WE are all suffering till the next major tournament.

  12. I have feeling that he doesn’t feel responsible at all for this fiasco and obviously he didn’t tell the truth about his thoughts on Messi and Mascherano. I wished he had the balls to explain why he dropped Lo Celso all of a sudden, who could have helped so much in the transition. Me I still think that we were very lucky against France. It could have been much worse for the scores. I don’t want to be the bad mouth but he seems to be the worst coach at high level competition that I have ever seen. Maybe only Panama did worst than us but they have limited resources.

  13. @Ebo Sorry the reply wasn’t for you. It was aimed at @Choripan .

    And to your questions-

    It’s easy to blame Sampaoli for everything. Yes he’s at fault but the problem lies deep beyond one man. When you track 4 years back you’ll see. Many here like @choripan (I don’t know if he was here or even watching football back then) were saying,

    1. Copa 2015 is around the corner so no time for experimenting. Gone 1 year and Copa
    2. WC qualifier and Copa centenario is coming so no time for rebuilding the squad; there’s plenty of time left till the next WC. Copa Centenario over. Same mess.
    3. Crunch WCQs and the same stuff and the here comes the WC.
    4. BS cycle repeats

    To the France game:

    It’s all if and buts. If Aguero played, if Higuain played,if parked the bus, blah blah blah… i don’t think anything would have mattered. France were too strong for us. They would have won anyway(if you want to play the “if game”). The scoreline is so misleading btw.

    PS: I don’t like calling anyone names, but the kid does it everytime. He just disrespects many respected members(ofc not me) here.

  14. Absolute disaster. No one to blame but himself. So many awful decisions I’m convinced Brazilians paid him off. He almost did everything in his power to weaken us and it worked. It’s bat shit crazy this disaster of a coach has a few people defending him. Fucking clueless!!

    • He said he learned for the future! what he learned? Defending a 2-1 lead for 30 minutes? or knowing when to play high back line and when not to ? or how to properly use fullback as a wing back? or did he get convinced that playing false’9′ without inverted wingers does not work? or.. or.. or …etc
      This crazy egomaniac was a complete failure!
      Still waiting for the Baldy to prove the rumors and say loud and clear that Messi was running the show!
      everything that was said till now, proves otherwise.

    • Hey “star player(s) fanboy” pipe down. Go and watch football before the Bauza era and then talk crap about Sampaoli and Bauza. They were at fault but not for everything. Poor Bauza had to deal with the mess of a team Tata made and had no luxury of friendlies to experiment. Yet his first game in charge saw “one of the best” team performance Argentina had for ages. No recent coach can claim otherwise except maybe Sabella(debatable). But unfortunately his team went downhill after that. Then came Sampaoli who got the collective mess of a team made by Tata and Bauza. He had friendlies to get a look at his team before the wcqs unlike Bauza but not much time on his side. He tried testing new players at first and then reverted back to the Tata way. Thanks to Leo Messi the team made to the WC finals.
      Both of them had Sabella-Tata team core and that ultimately led to their demise and time wasn’t on their side too.

      • What is the most aspect of a good and smart coach?

        IMO, Selecting suitable players that will successfully execute his tactics and strategy.

        Did Sampaoli select the right players to play ‘total football’ as they describe it?
        Did Sampaoli select the right players to play high defense?
        Did Sampaoli select the right formation to play ‘False 9’
        Was Sampaoli right in playing against France with no striker?
        Was Sampaoli right in calling the NT as Messi’s team?
        Was he right in saying that WE are here to help Messi win a world cup?
        If you answer any of the above questions with a ‘Yes’ then Sampaoli was not at fault.
        Sampaoli was basically at fault for all the above and mainly for hatching a plan that did not live to the potential of his squad. Period.

        P.S please enough of the name calling as “Messi’s fanboy” or “star players fan boy” or other names that are found on this forum. others might be way more supporters of NT than many.

        • I completely agree with Ebo…. well said Friend

          I was about to post on the same line , but then you just echoed my thoughts…
          Few more points:-
          Was Sampaoli right in continuing with Caballero as the first GK after the 6-1 loss to Spain in the friendlies? Did he not understand that Caballero is clearly not the man to play as the last line of defense? Poor Armani , was put under extreme pressure playing only his second international match against the best team in the competition , France. He should have played from the very first match.

          Was Sampaoli right in giving Dybala only 22 minutes on the pitch in the entire competition? It’s absolutely impossible to believe that a player of his quality was not played in the attacking line. we are not fools or not seeing Messi play for the first time, everyone across globe has perhaps experienced his exploits as midfielder, proper striker , play maker everything possible, So keeping Dybala out of contention , just because his playing style is similar to Messi was absolute nonsense.
          Was Sampaoli right in letting Mbappe play his usual self, absolute freely? Was he not aware of his pace and that defenders like Masherano playing in the last lap of their career would never catch up with him? We did not see any defensive planning to contain Mbappe or Griezmann …
          And last mistake , as posted by Ebo, the biggest of them all…going without a proper striker who could support Messi in the biggest match of the competition..that too, when you have two Europe’s best , in Aguero and Higuain…
          Seriously, I think, after this WC debacle , Sampaoli should give up the idea of coaching any football side again and plan for some other profession

          • First of all, a team is made by ‘players’, then comes the strategy which can use the maximum potential of each individual as a team. But if you objectively look at the ‘midfielders’, ‘defenders’ and ‘goalkeepers’ produced by Argentina in the past 10 years, do you really think there was anyone who could replace a Juan Roman Riquelme, or Veron or Cambiasso? Don’t you think Mascherano playing the holding midfielder role was the worst? Is there anyone in the past ten years from Argentina who have come that could match the quality of a World Class No.5 like Busquets?

      • Ebo,
        I tell you this Bootygol “Gaucho” is a big troll. He doesn’t see logic in anything, nor does he understand anything because of his ignorance. Sometimes I really get the feeling that he is actually a typical “Brazilian Gaucho”

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