Argentine Champions League preview: Lionel Messi, Lautaro Martínez, more

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A total of 26 Argentine players will be taking part in this season’s Champions League with matches beginning on Tuesday.

Every group will have one Argentine participating, with three groups having five Argentine players. Of the 26 players, only two of them have won the Champions League. Lionel Messi having won it four times with FC Barcelona and Ángel Di María in 2014 with Real Madrid where he was arguably the best player of the final. Here are the groups:

Group A:
Bayern Munich
Atletico Madrid: Ángel Correa
Red Bull Salzburg
Lokomotiv Moscow

Group B:
Real Madrid
Shakhtar Donetsk
Inter Milan: Lautaro Martínez
Borussia Monchengladbach

Group C:
FC Porto: Agustín Marchesín
Manchester City: Sergio Agüero
Olympiacos: Maximiliano Lovera
Olympique de Marseille: Leonardo Balerdi, Darío Benedetto

Group D:
Liverpool
Ajax: Lisandro Martínez, Nicolás Tagliafico
Atalanta: José Luis Palomino, Alejandro Gómez, Cristian Romero
FC Midtjylland

Group E:
Sevilla: Lucas Ocampos, Marcos Acuña, Franco Vázquez
Chelsea: Willy Caballero
FC Krasnodar
Stade Rennais

Group F:
Zenit Saint Petersburg: Sebastián Driussi
Borussia Dortmund
Lazio: Joaquín Correa, Gonzalo Escalante
Club Brugge

Group G:
Juventus: Paulo Dybala
FC Barcelona: Lionel Messi
Dynamo Kyiv
Ferencváros

Group H:
PSG: Leandro Paredes, Mauro Icardi, Ángel Di María
Manchester United: Marcos Rojo, Sergio Romero
RB Leipzig
İstanbul Başakşehir F.K.

One match on Tuesday will involve all five Argentine players, all of them having played for the Argentina national team. Here are the matches for this week:

Tuesday:

Zenit Saint Petersburg (Sebastián Driussi) vs. Club Brugge
Dynamo Kyiv vs. Juventus (Paulo Dybala)
RB Leipzig vs. İstanbul Başakşehir F.K.
Stade Rennais vs. FC Krasnodar
Lazio (Joaquín Correa, Gonzalo Escalante) vs. Borussia Dortmund
Chelsea (Willy Caballero) vs. Sevilla (Lucas Ocampos, Marcos Acuña, Franco Vázquez)
PSG (Leandro Paredes, Mauro Icardi, Ángel Di María) vs. Manchester United (Marcos Rojo, Sergio Romero)
FC Barcelona (Lionel Messi) vs. Ferencváros

Wednesday:

Red Bull Salzburg vs. Lokomotiv Moscow
Real Madrid vs. Shakhtar Donetsk
Ajax (Lisandro Martínez, Nicolás Tagliafico) vs. Liverpool
Manchester City (Sergio Agüero) vs. FC Porto (Agustín Marchesín)
FC Midtjylland vs. Atalanta (José Luis Palomino, Alejandro Gómez, Cristian Romero)
Olympiacos (Maximiliano Lovera) vs. Olympique de Marseille (Leonardo Balerdi, Darío Benedetto)
Bayern Munich vs. Atletico Madrid (Ángel Correa)
Inter Milan (Lautaro Martínez) vs. Borussia Monchengladbach

38 Comments

  1. Puks(pukar lamichhane) it’s me Roshan dai..I hope you are safe my brother in ezypt.. take care bro..
    As we both are die hard Argentina fans both Messi and riquelme are great players.. fantastic players..it’s due to dumb ass coach Diego who left out riquelme for no reason.. garbage 🗑️ selection of players.. leaving out world class players like riquelme,aimar, zanetti,cambiasso,lucho Gonzalez and taking Jonas gutearez Arial grace Mario bolatti ..I don’t know really what the hell Diego was thinking.. may be still at cocaine trip??

    • Hi dai….just saw ur message…..hop u r great…….yes u are absolutely right……..now days we don’t have such kind of players we used to produce……but i hope players like Lo Celso , Palacios, Ascasibar , lautaro , de paul matures and take there game to another level to win world cup with Messi

    • Actually his best role is at midfield but as I said before he should be on the leftside of a 4 man midfield in a proper 4-4-2 and not a makeshift 4-4-2 that Scaloni used against Ecuador.

      • there are no secret : Connexion !

        —————–Lautaro
        —-Ocampos—-Messi—–Di Maria
        ———–Paredes—Lo Celso
        –Acuna—Quarta—Pezzella—Montiel
        —————-Martinez

        Ocampos et Acuna can work their chemistry with Sevilla all the year and Quarta with Pezzella in Fiorentina ! Chemistry is so importante

        • Well a proper 4-4-2 is the one we saw in the most recent friendly against brazil:

          ———————-Lautaro——–Lio————————

          —-Celso——-De Paul————-Paredes———-ocampos

          Celso was misplaced by Scaloni (as usual) but he worked really hard and defended well while on the other side Ocampos played behind Messi and dragged the brazilian players away from him giving Lio the space necessary to cause Brazil’s backline alot of problems.
          In that game Argentina outplayed Brazil out of the park.

          Against Ecuador the line up on paper was as follows:

          ——————–Lautaro————–Messi—————–

          ———Acuna——–Paul————Paredes——-Ocampos—-

          Looks almost exactly the same (swap Acuna for Celso) but in actuality Ocampos played infront of Messi and the team often looked like this:

          ——————-Lautaro———–Ocampos—————–

          ————————–Messi———————————-

          ——-Acuna————-Paul—————Paredes————

          Ocampos’s connection with messi was excellent and he made several dangerous runs because of this including the run that got the penalty……however this left the midfield with 3 players who haven’t played together in over a year and one of those players (Acuna) isn’t at his best in a central role.
          Now I would imagine the plan was to have Ocampos drop back in case of an Ecaudorian counter where the shape would go from this:

          ——————-Lautaro———–Ocampos—————–
          —————————–Messi——————————
          ——-Acuna—————-Paul—————Paredes———

          to this:
          ——————–Lautaro————–Messi—————–
          ———Acuna——–Paul————Paredes——-Ocampos—-

          and it’s a neat idea but the problem is that Ocampos was more focused on making himself an outlet to which Lio can pass than a wide midfielder i.e. Lucas was way more focused on attack than defense and thus the team that hasn’t played together in a year look even more disjointed than originally thought.
          Acuna is at his best in a wide role, especially in the midfield because he’s dynamic and has a knack for crosses, but if you put him in a more central role, his dynamism tends to run him straight into the opposing team’s midfield and his crosses become less frequent.

  2. Just watched havertz today and I must say these German players are technically superior to others only when put in a well drilled system. Without a proper system supported by other technical players, they fail mostly. If you look at madrid, kroos played better games and sustained as a world’s best midfielder because of Madrid’s perfect system with perfect players but if you had put him in teams like Atalanta, Roma or like Chelsea, he definitely would look bang average and I bet you won’t be surprised at all.

    These Chelsea team has qualities in their depth but they’re being managed by a sissy, who only picks on others for small or no reason.

  3. Never saw such an improvement in Acuna’s passing until now. I think, since joining Sevilla, he has improved a lot in his technicality.

    Lucas Ocampos was average today. Apart from his runs and few crosses he struggled a lot in 1v1 situations.

    J. Correa with an assist and finally, Dybala’s first minutes this season.

    • Ocampos played well in 1st half he was the biggest trouble for Chelsea, the only way Chelsea players were able to stop him by withdrawing Fouls . But after 60 minutes he was a completely different player, he looked exhausted loosing the ball quite easily and always misplacing the passes.

  4. Who else hates our first kit and thinks that the blue is too light , seriously . Where are our bright blue colours like in 2010 World Cup jersey

  5. Sevilla is playing nowhere near last season. They are struggling in the midfield after Banega left. Imo Banega left too early he could still have played at highest level for 2-3 more years.

    • Banega is still one the best in top leagues, hes simply too good for the Saudi league at the moment. Perhaps money, future, family are his priority now. At that age, he could injury himself and kiss the big contracts goodbye so maybe he’s cashing in while he can. Regardless, he is one of several players that makes my blood boil a bit when it comes to Scalonis picks.

      i’ve said it countless times but Paredes and Banega should have been competing this entire time. I do not like how Paredes has a guaranteed spot. There’s a healthy balance between role competition and improvement and with Paredes, i see neither. Ascacibar, Battaglia, Foyth :), Lisandro, whomever, are all distant fantasies, nowhere in sight. Guido is plan B.
      Don’t get me wrong, Paredes doing very well statistically and fits the system. I do like him, i but Im curious how other types like Ascacibar would do in that position and to the team.

  6. Cannot we try Lisandro Martinez in Right back position??……he is flexible in many position as we see ……and he is small agile and really good with the ball more than foyth i feel……he can be our jordi alba for national team……what u guys think?

  7. Barca will win but i see Messi leaving end of this season. Barca are treating Messi badly, they purchased two players who cost astronomical price that place in same position as Messi, Gerizemann and Coutinho. Now every one blaming Messi for their poor performances but no body pointing fingers at club or board who bought them. They also sold lot of players messi like suarez, vidal, arthur and then buy worse players. Messi leaving after 2014 would have been the best decision. However i hope barca go down the drain once messi leave. Barca are nasty political club who treat their legends badly and hide behind catalan propoganda. Eg Alves, Neymar, Messi, Eto, Villa, R9, Maradona(yes they did ) etc.

  8. We used to have a much bigger representation. This has gone down I believe. Also, two more stats will be interesting

    1. How many are actually NT candidates for next 2-4 years? Like who cares for Caballero
    2. How many are just making up numbers? If there is no injury or suspension, how many are automatic starters for their teams?

    Quick count, for 1 above, I see about 12-13 players.
    Quick count, for 2 above, I see about 15-17 players. A generous count.

    I am firm believer that our players need to play in top tournaments, fight against top opponents, face the toughest challenges. All these help the NT in various attributes.

    Anyhow, will sit in front of TV and root for our players to have top performances. Cheers!!!

  9. If cristian romero plays well in the group stage especially against liverpool.. Theres 50% chance that he could head to liverpool as vandijk and matip are injured and joe gomez is shaky in defence….. They are looking at ben white currently but he is quite expensive….. Lets wait and see what happens…

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