Possible changes for Argentina vs. Mexico at World Cup

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Argentina national team coach Lionel Scaloni is set to make changes for the team with reports of some of the names which could start.

Lionel Scaloni is expected to make at least two changes for Argentina with three of them being substitutions which we saw against Saudi Arabia. Cristian Cuti Romero was substituted out for Argentina vs. Saudi Arabia and replaced with Lisandro Martínez. According to Diario Olé, Lisandro could start in place of Romero vs. Mexico on Saturday.

The two fullbacks for Argentina were Nicolás Tagliafico and Nahuel Molina. Scaloni could change one of them or both of them with Gonzalo Montiel or Marcos Acuña starting.

Papu Gómez started in midfield with Rodrigo De Paul and Leandro Paredes. For the game against Mexico, one of Enzo Fernández or Alexis Mac Allister will start in place of Papu in midfield. If those four changes would be made, the starting eleven would be the following:

Emiliano Dibu Martínez; Acuña, Lisandro Martínez, Otamendi, Montiel; Enzo or Mac Allister, Paredes, De Paul; Di María, Lautaro, Messi

304 Comments

  1. Match against Saudi is one of blackday for Scaloni.Before fielding his playerst he can do one simple thing tight your defenc BCz we don’t have locelso . whoever is our first opponent just protect Ur team first and then start attacking startegy wilbe looks better in first gameEvenifwe scored early team looks complete shaky in all areas..

  2. An offside should be simple. Player is in front of all 10 outfield players of the opposition team when the pass is made = no goal. Player is not in front of all 10 outfield players of the opposition team when the pass is made = goal. I can’t comprehend how we humans have been to the moon, have supercomputers in our pockets, and have invented technology that has literally left our solar system but in a sporting competition played on grass that we have thrown BILLIONS UPON BILLIONS of dollars into we can’t fairly calculate a fucking offside. It’s not rocket science. Any fan can look at the picture of the field and see that he wasn’t offside because of a player on the bottom. And these “expert” billionaires that had years to develop technology, rules, regulations, and have basically killed thousands of people to host this event can’t comprehend it. We shouldn’t be knocked out because of this because we should be capable of winning the next two games, but if it happens I will be infuriated. Nothing disgusts me more than greed, liars, and injustice. This isn’t a friendly match between Suriname and Fiji. This is the biggest sporting competition on the planet and they can’t administer such a simple rule. I can’t believe that VAR has taken years to develop and it’s still so severely flawed. More was spent on this World Cup than the entire worth of SpaceX. Still getting that same feeling I get after so many matches in CONMEBOL. Feels just about as corrupt.

  3. Really surprised why most Argentine fans need individual brilliance in place of a team player? I mean some are making opinion of dybala or garnacho playing in the role of lo celso.😂😂. You need another 2010? Here some mundo members only prefer club performance of a forward as ultimate. A fit dybala after this much years had not given any major contribution to the team. But coz due to his great club stats like Messi dybala has many fans unlike lo celso. I mean lo celso over dybala anyday even for playing on that right wing position or central, forget about LCM role. I mean dybala won’t going to make any difference. He is short, slow and won’t impact against those big Saudis. Lo celso loss is bigger than any one thinks. I still remember many in here posted line up without lo celso. Many got frustrated with his lack of stats in the club shirts coz they expected more from him. And still they criticize him like he is not de bruyne. I mean lo celso in Argentine jersey will clearly dominate those club shit de bruyne.

    • You didn’t understand what people are referring to. The majority of opinions indicated that when Messi is tired, send Dybala as a sub on 60th min. Same goes for other players not producing such as Papu who could be subbed by a young talent which we don’t have, but Garnacho would fit that profile.It means if you have depth in your bench use it, no any team relies heavily on its starters and able to win the world cup, not to mention if their Avg age is higher than 29.

    • It’s funny how there’s people that watched this game one day ago with working eyes and then go on to make comments insisting that “Lo Celso wouldn’t have made a difference” and then also say “This is why Scaloni should have called up Garnacho instead of an mls fraud”. Really? You think Lo Celso, who provides midfield balance, defending, hustle, creativity, connection with Messi (so he doesn’t have to come back to pick up the ball) wouldn’t have made a difference but a debutant Garnacho up there on the wing would? Someone mentioned it was like we played a 6 – 0 – 4, which it did feel like at times. Is Garnacho being one of those front 4 going to help, or our core midfielder that has many of the qualities this game demanded? Still though, I think Dybala would have helped yesterday.

    • if you want to win a World cup you should be winning matches to a level that robbed goals won’t make a difference. Not by 1 goal, but 2-3.

      At least in the group stages. Germany was thrashing every single team they came across. France we’re getting hat tricks left and right. Italy was demolishing everyone. Brazil… well… no need to explain.

  4. It’s so funny reading some of these comments from these armchair coaches. “Argentina won’t pass group”, “Argentina won’t pass QF”, “Argentina can’t beat France”, “It’s the Argentine diet”. ENOUGH! Asados and parrilladas are part of the culture, it’s also a large part of Brazil and Uruguays culture. You also do not need only players from “top” European teams to win tournaments. You need good players with team cohesion, a strategy, and luck. Let’s also give the Garnacho thing a rest too, the guy isn’t ready for a major tournament. I swear this message board goes from really hot highs to really, and I mean really low lows. It’s never in between. We lose one game, a game in which overall we didn’t play bad, and it’s back to the drawing board..let’s prepare for 2026.

    • I agree Garnacho is not ready for the world cup where he has been the talk of almost every English media stream praising his tenacity and promising skills, but Almada is ready for the world cup instead….fire Almada in the dying minutes and he will produce for you the winning goal.

      • This is mentioned because many people, including you aren’t Argentinian. You don’t understand customs and cultures from the country. When people mention diet as an issue, they don’t realize how common this is across South America. To your comment, you’re comparing a toxic substance to beef (a nutritious animal), I don’t see the correlation. Also quite stupid.

  5. I want to caution everyone about degrading or disregarding players in leagues not named top 5 europe. I’m reading ad nauseum complaints and writing off Almada because he’s currently in MLS. You guys are mostly armchair analysts, you’re not nostradamus and instilling a requirement that NT can only include players from the big 5 Europe is really short sighted. You don’t know the potential level a player if he’s still in MLS or Primera in Argentina for example. Enzo is good example to check your requirements. Do you think joining Liga Portugal for 4 months is responsible for his level? Hell no. The talent was there, the only difference is that became more noticed to European biased supporters. Now against SA, he was one of the bright points and i def look forward to seeing him more. Heck, i may take him over Paredes whos been in Europe for 8 years (similar argument applies to Alvarez, joined City Jan / Feb 22). The meteoric rise of Enzo should be lesson to you.

    • Agreed. Now generally I don’t like the idea of promoting mls players to the national team because it could encourage more talents to go there and we know that we need as many players as possible adjusted to the elite level of football in order to go deep in the World Cup (obviously the main motivation is financial either way but the national team is a difference maker for some players). Now there’s always teams like Japan, Canada, etc that can surprise larger sides with a team mostly comprised of players from non-top 5 leagues but they don’t usually go deep. Still though, it’s very ignorant to use this logic to immediately discredit an individual player. If we have like 8 players from the mls and primera and russia in our squad, then I can see why it’s worrying. But like you said, some players are just so talented that it doesn’t matter what ranking their league is. Alvarez and Enzo have played most of their games in their careers in primera and now they are rightfully in the world cup and even possible starters. Enzo is one of the few players I’ve seen that literally doesn’t need to adapt. When we played our qualifying opener against Ecuador in 2020 (which feels incredibly recent) Enzo had only 4 games of professional football under his belt. Now he looks better than Paredes and is in the WC squad. It’s ridiculous that people are using the “mls fraud” thing to make Almada a scapegoat for a game he didn’t even play in. Whether Almada is in the fourth division of Argentina or mls or the premier league is irrelevant because he had no fault in the Saudi game whatsoever. You lose a game and the only thoughts capable of going through your head are that Almada plays in the mls? I wonder why people who can’t muster anything about the actual game, players on the pitch, tactics, or opposition even bother to comment.

        • Exactly Sorin. Add to that since we know we won’t play him then why waste a spot that could go to a defender or winger….also Garnacho inclusion might tempt the coach to send him on pitch in the last 15 min when the team is chasing a win and that could produce a moment of magic from a young healthy and talented player.

          • I agree. Btw, I’m one of the stubborn fools who still believes in Lamela. So I would have brought him before looking at MLS.
            I am also hoping that this young MLS players proves me wrong. Would be awesome if I was wrong.

          • i’m your shadow today. lol. I’ve been calling lamela for years. pissed he’s been overlooked. He was such a obviously similar profile to GLC too. He defines DO OR DIE attitude, never stops running and hassling opponents. We can use his tenacious aggressiveness and creativity.

          • I wouldn’t reject someone simply because of their league.

            I have never seen Almada play live full match. But based on highlights, he has good skills.
            But I don’t think he has pace comparable to Garnacho.
            But I would like to see him get some minutes.

          • That’s a good point dr.
            Nerves can get you no matter what level of s player you are.
            My issue about leagues are this:
            I have heard multiple times from players leaving Argentina to go play in England, and they complain about the speed and intensity. As if the argie league wasn’t fast and intense enough.
            Example: my favorite player tevez. I remember when he left Boca to west Ham united. His first few weeks he complained in his interview saying that he needs to train harder now because of the fitness of his teammates in west Ham. His teammates were trash in west Ham just as an fyi.

          • El Diego fan – I agree . I think garrancho has the pace over almada and very well could be a better player. Scaloni might have chosen the wrong call, but I’m not the coach and don’t know the reasons.

            I’m just not in favor of disliking a player bc of the league they play in. MLS have a few starters in WC (Ecuador, USA, Wales, Mexico, Canada) so I think there is some talent in US. Yes these are not too 10 but still good enough teams to qualify for WC.

  6. ”We want to become world champion and are afraid of Mexico? Or Poland? If we can’t beat them well we are not worthy of being champions…. PERIOD!!”

    My guy when you lose to Saudi Arabia all of a sudden Mexico and Poland becomes Spain and England..😂😂

    Argentina top the group though this is my belief.

  7. A lot of people commenting about including Garnacho. I think these have been the same “Mundo” coaches calling for Pastore back in the day. Please leave the player selection to the coaching staff and scouts. Garnacho is a good talent, way too raw for a World Cup with not enough first team playing time. Starting a few games for United does not mean you deserve a roster spot in a World Cup, especially for a team like Argentina.

  8. The WC is to determine best team, Argentina is not performing they lost against the weakest team in the group. Argentina will not make it to the next phase. we need to be realistic Mexico will be a challenge. even though we make to the next round. are there any of you think this Argentina team can beat France?

    • Although I would love to see Argentina winning this cup, but the reality this team can not beat France because we don’t have the quality of players in every position. Yes, Argentina might win the next remaining games and top the group, but I’m not sure they can advance beyond the QF. When you call Alamda to give your bench depth, you know what’s coming next. Knock out stages are determined by the richness of your bench because starters start to fall due to fatigue, injuries, suspension, and lack of creativity.

  9. Now we want Brazil and Portugal to lose or tie at best.

    People talking nonsense about Messi LMAO……….i find it hilarious that some in here TURN on Messi the millisecond something bad happens……..what he was himself playing For PSG like 10 days ago and GREAT for ARG during and After COPA……enough with the BS PLZ

  10. @Choripan

    “Almada had an entire season performing well at the senior level. 29 games, 2,373 minutes, 6 goals, 7 assists. He also played a game with the senior NT team in Sept and did pretty well by all accounts. So, Scaloni et al closely observed him throughout the season and NT game and made their decision.”

    With all this said Garnacho is still way ahead of Almada in terms of ability and quality on the pitch, I mean light years ahead, it’s not even close. You could make the same case for any 21 year old Argentinian playing in the local Primera but this doesn’t mean they deserve to go to the World Cup. Come on, Honduras was a poor team in terms of quality, their next door neighbor Costa Rica got destroyed by Spain just now at the World Cup. Almada did nothing special against Honduras that warrant him a call up for this year World Cup…You could say the same thing about Meza in the run to the 2018 World Cup, he had a 15 minutes of fame against Spain and was having a standout season in the Primera which was enough for Sampoali to include him in the World Cup team..Conclusion, Meza wasn’t a World Cup level player. If we’re going to talk about minutes, why not select Sebastián Driussi who right now is like the second coming of Batigol in the MLS. Sebastián Driussi was a huge let down in Europe (Russia) and right now the MLS makes him look like Batigol.

    Garnacho was always involved in Man United U21 teams which he won the championship. So he has been getting minutes for a long time. He was rightfully promoted to the senior team and since then has shown his quality. Yes, I wish he would get off Social media and focus on his football but whatever he said should not have been a reason to disqualify him from this year’s World Cup.

    Look I have nothing against the MLS, all I’m saying is, the guys who just got destroyed by Spain 7-0, majority of them play professionally in the MLS. Same for a lot of the players on the Honduras and Jamaica national team..Playing in the MLS is of course good for these players financially but when it comes to quality we’re now seeing it on display from the likes of the USMNT, Costa Rica, Mexico etc. at this year’s World Cup. Canada is the only CONCACAF team that looks good at least in the first half against Belgium..

    Ten Hag is rooting for the Netherlands he sees the bracket like you and me so of course he would rather Argentina not select Garnacho given Argentina could likely meet Holland in the quarterfinals. So if Garnacho is not ready for the World Cup why is he starting for Manchester United? Ten Hag is contradicting himself. As I said, Ten Hag is rooting for Holland so no need to take World Cup advice from him, the same for Portugal’s Bruno Fernandes.

    16 and 17 year old Bayern, Real, Man City, Chelsea, Liverpool, Man United, Arsenal, Barcelona etc. kids would easily be starting and being stars in the MLS but of course their talent would be wasted in the league. Again no one can justify Almada selection over Garnacho, and look I have nothing against the player, first saw him at the recent Olympic..If Almada doesn’t get out of the MLS he is likely heading to the Middle East like Pity Martinez, this is likely one of the reason Scaloni selected Almada to try and get him a deal in Europe for one of Argentina most “promising” young player..Again similar resume to Meza..

    • So let me get this straight…. Scaloni “probably” selected Almada to showcase him to potential European suitors? You guys will say anything. The fact of the matter is, you can be in the MLS and still be quality. Also, there are no guarantees either Almada or Garnacho would even get any meaningful playing time so why fuss about it? Is Garnacho the savior of Argentina? Would this even be a topic of conversation if we easily beat Saudi Arabia? Most likely not.

      Unless you’re a Messi or Ronaldo (or young phenom), 1 player alone will not be the sole reason a team wins. People are pointing to Spain as the perfect example why we should have selected “other young talent” but the reality is, Spain’s youngsters have been playing top flight football on a regular basis. I wholeheartedly guarantee that if Garnacho was selected AND played a bad game, all (if not most) would still question his selection. People hated Nico during our Cop run and now all the sudden, he’s viewed as one of our most “influential players”. We have no consistency when judging players at all.

    • Although I agree Scaloni should have selected Garnacho but not at the expense of Almada. I would take both of them. Almada proven to be good whenever playing for Argentina. The one that should have been not selected is one of the Lo Celso’s replacements. Scaloni has 4 of them for one position: Papu, Enzo, MacAllister, and Palacios. What for one position covered by 4 players? Garnacho should have been selected over one of them.

    • I’ve been calling for Garnacho’s inclusion for sometime now. The kid looks frightening, blistering pace and directness. In term of Scaloneta, he certainly fills an obvious gap in our squad and still today, if we had the option, i’d ask Messi to send his Jet to go pick him up ASAP.

      My point down below, was to simply explain Almadas inclusion over Garnacho from the perspective of the NT management. Also, i want to believe that if Garnacho played the entire season and performed as he did in the past 4 games, I have little doubt Scaloni wouldn’t have called him. I agree with Olive in that he probably missed La Scaloneta WC because he missed parts of United preseason and league start due to an “attitude adjustment period”. It’s just bad timing really, missed it by few months.

      Now for Ten Hag, i don’t agree at all that he wasn’t acting in good faith when he made those statements. Garnacho is Ten Hags asset and he is doing well by nurturing him in a pragmatic fashion, especially after the attitude issue. Similar to Pavon, he tanked and disappeared after the Sampaoli train wreck ruined him. WC is a lot to deal with and I see kids light up and then disappear all time. I’m not saying it will happen to Garnacho but i trust Ten Hag know what’s he doing and saying.

  11. For the people asking for Garnacho or Dybala to replace GLC in the starting lineup, do you guys even watch futbol? Scoring is def not an issue for the team as the 2/3 disallowed goals should have stood honestly. The thing that made GLC great and valuable is balance, which means he’s just as effective attacking/passing as he is defending. Bringing on Dybala (to start) who may be great at attacking… or even Garnacho (if he was selected)….would unbalance the team immediately. How would either of those guys help us solidify our midfield play which is clearly lacking? Those 2 guys are not even known for pressing or tracking back. I swear Argentina has the most ridiculous fans. Just be realistic with your comments. Clearly losing GLC was a bigger loss than we all initially thought. Hard to blame Scaloni when one of his most reliable midfielders got injured at the last minute. If there was an appropriate replacement, who deserved a call up, I am sure that player would have been considered.

    I have no problem with with Dybala, who I think he’s great but he has not done much when playing for Argentina. Garnacho, though talented, is still unknown at this point. I have seen him play and all he does is attack (rarely presses or tack back), which is what the team lacks now…. I have faith now lets wait until SATURDAY

    • Don’t forget that we could not equalize against Saudi in 40+ minutes.
      Our attack is lacking something. It’s the speed, energy and creative unpredictability.

      Papu Gomez is nearly Messi’s age. Can he really fill that role?
      I think both Dybala and Garnacho will do a better job. And since Garnacho isn’t here, our only choice is to go with Dybala. Gomez can come in as a substitute if needed.

      • Yes, I agree that we could not score in 40+ but it is common for a team to finish the game in the first half. If we goals had stood, not scoring in the last 40+ would be a mute point.

        My point is….The fact that we lost GLC so close to the WC, Scaloni has not even had a chance to even test a replacement. Playing Papu was a gamble but also safe as he has played that role before during our uneaten streak. The fact that Papu didnt impact the game also highlighted his ineffectiveness in that role. Dybala may be better a better option than Papu in that role but playing someone like Dybala, who naturally likes to drift towards the center, would further expose the left side of the formation. If Dybala can press and track back ala Alverez… Then it might solve this issue…. I am curious to see what Scaloni does on Saturday… I have a feeling Enzo will start for Papu (GLC’s role) to provide unity in the midfield.

  12. i admit that i don t know anything about Canada football but from what i see today exist a very good team there. congrats to Canadian friends here. till today if somebody telling me Canada and sports the first thing could come to my brain is ice hockey. as i see it is more than that. hats off.

  13. As much as I would like Garnacho in the team, I think there is no point talking about players like him anymore at this moment.
    Because we can’t replace players in the 26 man squad any more.
    I am sure the selection could have been better, though. Especially Garnacho’s speed is exactly what we needed.

    If it was upto me, I will make 2 to 4 changes(as I said):
    1> Dybala for Papu.
    2> Lisandro for C.Romero
    and may be,
    3> Enzo for Paredes.
    4> Acuna for Tagliafico.

    C.Romero seems unfit. Papu is getting old. Acuna is a bit better than Tagli.

  14. When you advertise that much new technologies such as VAR by selling to the world that it came to correct any flaws, you have to justify it on the field. After the scandalous omission of the use of VAR in the infamous 2019 copa america semifinal in favor to Brazil, FIFA and co should have been even more cautious to prevent any similar incidents in order not to put VAR’s reliability in jeopardy.
    But when you disallow from the same team not one or two but three goals due to offside in a world cup game, you have to be 100% sure that there is not any mistake or else there is corruption!
    I am also sure that this kind of “mistakes” would never happen against Brazil, but Argentina should take it as a reason, an additional reason, to give their all from now on.

    Another thing, after our shocking loss, there were some way too irritating comments in here from specific people who clearly didn’t respect other fans in here. Comments bushing and offending the team and Scaloni is way to harsh and disrespectful but i can take them only if such comments are generated due to despair and depression. But what i can’t take is such comments and immediately after “lols” which clearly indicates at least to me that such people didn’t really suffer because of the loss and didn’t really mind to make fun or at least being in the mood to do so.
    There are fans who support the team and others who love the team. There is a big difference here. First the fans who love the team suffer badly in such circumstances in contrast to the others and secondly they have something that others don’t even bother to realise and this is backing and standing by the team at hard times.
    Personally, i am trying to scroll such disrespectful idiots and i am not talking about Anuparno here. Anuparno’s comments were way too negative but i realised that his comments came from his pessimism and anxiety, he really wants the best for our team and he really suffers. I am talking about others in here who are being called trolls, i call them idiots to say the least because they don’t respect other fan’s feelings who are suffering. I would like not to mention such idiots because if they reply to me this forum will turn up to a swearing fest and i am on the verge of not coming back anyway!
    No wonder why respectful members in the past left and never came back again.
    Finally, about our beloved team, that loss was like a bad joke, i mean just before the begining of the world cup we had an unbeaten team for three years, which kicked Brazil’s ass twice and totally outplayed Italy, a team which convinced almost if not everyone that is really hard to beat and all of a sudden, we saw a different team in the first game of the world cup, a team which didn’t run, press and hustle like Scaloni’s real Argentina and we paid that big time! I don’t know if i will have the joy to witness my beloved team winning a world cup again in my lifetime but i surely know two things: First and mainly i will keep on loving my beloved team with all of my heart and keep on standing by them no matter what
    and secondly that as things stand right now, we have two choices: The real Argentina we all know comes up and fight for their lives because we have all it takes to win the remaining two matches to advance to the second round and the rest 4 to go all the way or
    The real Argentina wont show up and we crash out because in this case we don’t deserve to advance. Simple as that.
    Sorry for the long post.
    GOD BLESS YOU ALL!

  15. Hey guys I don’t care about the result or anything in Spain. But did you watch that Midfield??? Gavi Pedri Sergio wow OMG what a game they played. Thise three were all over the pitch… And when, for once, Sergio got further up the pitch either Gavi but mostly Pedri covered the back. I know all three of them play at the same club, but the understanding under each other was outstanding. I want something like that for Argentina!!!!
    Well we had it with Lo Celso but now we need to adapt. We need three Midfielders like RDP Paredes or Guido and either Mac or Enzo maybe even RDP Enzo Palacios we need 3 CM that’s important for our game.

    And yet again we need Dybala he is the most inform Argentine in attack…

  16. Kid
    I do not agree with you usually but EVERY word you say below is true. Papu is a waste, so is Paredes, MacAllister, and a few others. Truly this project should have been about the next two world cups. Soule, Garnacho, Enzo, Lautaro, Licha,Cuti, Molina, Nico Paz, Palacios and a few others should have been the core of this team and worked in over the last 18 months. Instead, the World Cup became a swan song for Messi. On Almada, I think he is a decent player, but the message needs to be sent that you cannot go to such a poor league and think you will be a top tier player. Somewhere we have to be honest that we think our players are better than they are but they are not. There is a reason both Correa’s are on the bench and our players go to mls. We are no longer producing stars. We are producing good but not great players. Even Lautaro at 23 or 24 was nowhere near as good as Bati Higuain, Crespo at that age. For 18 years it’s been all about hero worshipping in Argentina for Messi. A player who is a God in footballing skills but doesn’t even have the leadership skills to manage a fast food restaurant. I love Messi, but there was a reason that for the majority of his career he didn’t captain Barcelona or PSG. He is loved on the team, respected but he is not feared. Pasarella was feared, Maradona was feared, Masche was feared. All were loved but they were the drivers. In yesterdays game, Messi was a celebrity appearance. No legs, and he gave assurance after the game but he should have been holding Lautaro and DiMaria accountable for the dozen times they were in offside position because of a lack of concentration. Now, these players have made yesterday, today and the next three days a living miserable hell for me and millions of fans that support them because of their entitled casual attitude and living off an 18 month old Copa victory. So damn sad.

  17. Former England player Danny Murphy in a talk show said:

    “How many of those Argentina players get into the England team? Two, maybe three!”

    “You’d fit Lionel Messi in, and then maybe Romero if he is at it.”

    No matter the final result of this tournament, we need to pay attention to our youth academy and rebuild our talent pool.

    England, Spain, France and Germany are way ahead of us. They keep producing youngsters in every position while we haven’t seen a world class full back in 10 years.

  18. Honestly, I wouldn’t really want Argentina to win big against Mexico or Poland. A 2-1 or 1-0 would be fine to me. The reason is except in 1978, anytime we won big (more than 3-4 goals margin), we always had a bad tournament.
    In 1994 we won 4-0 against Greece but then losing in the second round.
    In 1998 we won 5-0 against Jamaica but lost against Netherlands
    In 2006 we won 6-0 against Serbia but lost against Germany
    In 2010 we won 4-1 against South Korea but lost against Germany

    In 3 finals we achieved: 1986, 1990, 2014, where we won 1 of them as the World Champs in 1986, we never won anything bigger than 2 goals margin. But then we went to the final in those 3 tournaments.

    It seems like we have an issue against complacency if we win big. That’s our issue. Maybe that’s also one of the reasons why we lost the first game. We got complacent that we won the Copa and Finallissima and the 36 unbeaten record.

    So no I don’t really envy England who won 6-2 or Spain 7-0 or France 4-1. I would rather win 1-2 goals margin at most in each game but looks solid in every game. I would take that happily. It is better to fly under the radar than having everyone scared of our team.

  19. High defense line high defense line!! There is a lot of discussion about it among everyone. A tactic like this isn’t ideal for winning matches! Since the Saudi coach saw and studied our team, he used it against us. Unlike Dembele or Mbape, our team does not have players like these. So it was that clueless non-profit (FREE) coach Scaloni supposed to comprehend the situation and make some tactical changes (instead he was covering his jaw and mouth with his hand stupid way and waiting that Messi will do something. Scaloni and only Scaloni fucked us up with his player selection, tactics, and cluelessness.

  20. The perfect result for us: Saudis Poland 0:1, the second best 1:2 a low scoring narrow Poland win, in this case with even a draw against Mexico (more higher more better, 3:3>>>2:2>>>1:1>>>0:0 ARG could qualify against Poland. Even a 1:0 win would be enough vs Poland to overtake them with goal difference. And thats will guarantee at least the second place for us.

  21. What a difference it makes. Had the second goal not disallowed, we would have been more confident and probably even got an easy 4-0 or 5-0 victory. Probably Papu would have been one of the best players instead of the scapegoat he is today. Probably we would continue seeing the players dancing in the locker room and having asado party again.

    But the loss was a very good wake up call. I read today Scaloni allowed the players to meet their wives/gf after the lunch. It is good for them to refresh their mind (and body lol). Hope they completely focus on the game now.

  22. I think Argentina will consolidate as it is clear that Lautaro’s goal was onside Argentina is going to use this as a rallying point like they did the match in 2019 Copa Semi against Brazil. I think radically changing the game plan/ line up is the wrong move. Players that are not up to the task need to be taken out and the squad needs to rally behind the fact we were robbed again. If Argentina wins both games we are clear and probably first in the group considering the Poland Mexico tie. So this is a setback but Scaloni/AFA needs to raise the issue as well so further arbitration mistakes aren’t made.

    • I hope this is the case! I remember how angry and how well everyone played in that 3rd place match because it was such obvious robbery. This offside thing was crazy. I hope they are upset about it and show that on the pitch.

      I also don’t think they need to change much from what they were doing. If Lautaro’s goal had gone in, everything would have gone well. I think similar players, playing against Mexico will do well and win the game. I think we should have kept playing the same way as we did with all the offside goals. If we had gotten another 4 goals that were close to offside, there is a good chance that one of them wouldn’t have been offside. Instead, it felt like we decided to go up the wings instead, which isn’t our strong suit.

  23. Every single World Cup Argentina implodes. Why can’t this team be normal at the World Cup? 36 unbeaten games and just like that the team lost its unbeaten run to Saudi Arabia of all national teams in a World Cup opening group stage game, you could’ve understand if this was a knockout game but as always it just Argentina staying true to form when it comes to the World Cup..And what is wrong with this DePaul guy, he is always in the face of the opponents and the referee, he needs to calm down, football is a contact sport, you’re going to get hit, this doesn’t mean you have to aggressively get into someone face because you got bodied onto the floor, just get up and move on with the game. And also, Messi doesn’t need a bodyguard or babysitter on the pitch, everytime Messi gets foul DePaul is in people’s faces, something that has nothing to do with him, Messi is a grown man he can handle himself on the pitch, this Depaul guy needs to chill with his hot head behavior.

    Months ago I said that Argentina needed Garnacho at the World Cup even before his goal against Real Sociedad, his heroic two goal assists against Aston Villa during a Cup game and his last minute winning goal against Fulham in the EPL. Argentinian football is too primitive, it needs to evolve, guys like Paredes try to replicate old school Argentinean style of play in midfield which doesn’t work in the modern game. Paredes is slow and lacks physicality, his style would probably work if this was 2000, and even then this guy wouldn’t make the Argentina national team. Even before his injury Paredes was in horrible form for Juventus and was then relegated to the bench, so after all this, Scaloni was expecting Paredes to just show up and dominate teams at the World Cup after being out of form and recovering from an injury he had? This just show Scaloni’s lack of insight when it comes to what is going on around him.

    None of the Argentina national team fullbacks are fast and skillful so this put a lot of pressure on Di Maria to constantly create moves on the wings. Papu Gomez started ahead of McCalister because the team needed that creative threat on the left side but as decent as Papu is at his age, the Saudi players were too physical and quick which gave them the edge over Papu. Papu Gomez is like two World Cups too late, he didn’t have the legs and speed to execute the plan that was asked of him during the game against Saudi Arabia. We saw these same problems against Jamaica, the leftside and rightside players were struggling to contain the speed and athleticism of the Jamaican attackers especially Leon Bailey (Aston Villa) and Antonio (West ham). After the early goal against Jamaica the team struggled until Messi had two individual moments that made the scoreline more dominating than it actually was. So after all this Scaloni never learned anything going into the 2022 World Cup, all he had on his mind was the Copa America results which have no relation to the actual World Cup. Even against Honduras, despite being poor overall, everytime they got in a dangerous position Argentina looked shaky, can’t forget Molina getting nutmeg inside his own 18 box by the Honduras attacking forward.

    So it was obvious Argentina needed a solution on the left side and out of nowhere God gifted them this young promising 18 year old who has all the traits to play in that position but was overlooked by the coach due to his ignorance and naivety. The whole age and experience argument did not make any sense given Garnacho is more talented than any player on the Saudi Arabia national team roster.. Also, look at Garnacho teammates at Man United, he is practicing with top quality players every single day..Imagine getting to test your skills against the Brazilian midfielder Casemiro, Bruno Fernandes (Portugal), Verane (France) Dalot (Portugal), Martinez (his compatriot) etc.

    Looking at how Argentina is struggling for pace at this World Cup, and players who can dribble past defenders inside their own 18 yard box, I would have taken even Juventus Soule to the World Cup considering all this., I mean, he couldn’t have done any worse than Papu Gomez. Garnacho and Soule would have been great additions to this current roster bringing much needed youth and excitement to the team. Mancini had to learn the hard lesson of missing out on the World Cup before going for younger inexperienced players instead of the veterans that were a part of the Euro winning team. The selection of Amada is easily one of the worst decisions in football, worse than Meza 2018 inclusion…What happened to Almada against Saudi Arabia? Wasn’t this guy supposed to be Scaloni ace in the hole?

    Another thing is Argentina is really poor at marketing their football brand…What will they do after Messi hangs up his boots? Almada should never have been selected ahead of Garnacho for this year’s World Cup, this was a BIG face palm..EPL/Manchester United vs MLS/Atlanta United, this was an easy decision which Scaloni and Messi fumbled because of, ‘’you know we’re a family not a football team, we can’t have a CR7 fanboy disrupting the harmony within our family (I mean football team).’’ Just stop it guys, this is a job, your family is at home, select players who can get the job done and not players trying to be best buddies with Messi, hint, hint Paredes. Like whenever one of these guys does an interview it’s always about them praising Messi, like if I speak good about Messi I’ll get selected. Scaloni also set a bad precedent by selecting Almada, what he is saying to the local clubs is that it doesn’t matter if you sell your players to the MLS these said players will have as equal a chance of making the national team roster as those players in your homeland and the ones playing abroad in Europe..The AFA should set a standard in which none of their brightest and best talents move to the MLS under any circumstances.

    Messi is his own worst enemy and he has nobody but himself to blame. I guess Messi didn’t learn anything from the 2014 and 2018 World Cup when it comes to aging players and injured players respectively.

    This is my verdict, Argentina top the group, play Tunisia in the second round then go out in the quarterfinals because by then many of the players’ injuries will have started to relapse including Di Maria. Well I could be wrong but from what I’m witnessing Argentina wasn’t prepared for this World Cup. Emi Martinez is now drinking a full glass of Copium after saying Argentina’s group was easy after the initial draw. I said earlier, Argentina would have a close victory against Saudi (didn’t expect a loss), easily defeat Mexico and a close win against Poland. Now with the loss it changes the equation, Mexico already has a point while Argentina is on zero point, now Tata’s approach will be different because it’s Argentina who needs to put points on the board. A draw result is still not bad for Mexico, it gives them two points with Saudi Arabia to play..Now if Say Argentina tied with Mexico, it makes their game against Poland even more difficult, and let’s say Poland defeats Saudi Arabia, this means Argentina will have to take the game to Poland leaving their back line exposed. This is what I think, both Mexico and Poland are going to defeat Saudi Arabia, so Argentina definitely needs to win against Mexico..Argentina’s first half performance against Saudi Arabia for me likely foreshadow wins for both Mexico and Poland, both teams won’t have any problem beating the Saudi’s especially with one of their best player being seriously injured by his own goalkeeper..

    • @kidulthood I have to say I agree with you. Every time a player speaks well of Messi, he is on the team. If someone says something that could be misquoted, he is canceled cultured from the national team.

      I said it before, I don’t think Garnacho would be selected after saying Ronaldo is the best.
      Tevez failed the test question in 2014 saying, we don’t need to be friends. Then when Tata wanted him, he needed to have a team meeting and Tevez said Messi is the best after previously saying his favorite teammate was Rooney. They wouldn’t even let him take a penalty against Colombia, but fate made him shoot the winning penalty!

      What about when Lamela agreed with Icardi that the team is much friendlier after the 2018 WC?

      Dybala left out after saying he can’t play with Messi. Messi admitted he called him to clarify statements and said he’s still young and needs to learn how to speak to the media. For what? Dybala didn’t say anything negative.

      Pastore left off the team on various occasions. Only Tata had the balls to bring back Tevez, Pastore, and try Lamela. He left the team stating everything is a mess!

      I have to agree with you because players like Cuti, Emi wouldn’t have played if they didn’t impress the man. Emi saved Messi’s legacy against Colombia. Messi saw that Cuti was a different breed.

      “Messi, What do you think about Almada and Enzo?” “They are great and have character. Scaloni: Messi likes Almada, keep him on radar.

      The scenario reminds me of Lebron James/Kevin Durant in NBA: They are there own greatest enemy because they always like to play with players they like and their coaches a GM surround them with players that will cater to them. This doesn’t mean they don’t win championships. Their talent is sometimes enough, but it is not the 100% best way to ensure victory.

      I want Messi to win the title and I believe they still can if they put in their greatest effort as a team. But after the retirement of Messi, Argentina needs to revamp. No more looking for the next Maradona, Messi, etc. It’s time to build a team of your best stars and if there is another Messi that comes along, he will be the icing on the cake or the cherry on top. The player that makes the difference, not the player who is the formula, equation, and answer.

      • @Wisdom and Kid – Every time a player speaks well of Messi, he is on the team. If someone says something that could be misquoted, he is canceled cultured from the national team.

        My friends, this seems like tabloid punditry. Let me breakdown how i see the Garnacho’s omission.

        Almada had an entire season performing well at the senior level. 29 games, 2,373 minutes, 6 goals, 7 assists. He also played a game with the senior NT team in Sept and did pretty well by all accounts. So, Scaloni et al closely observed him throughout the season and NT game and made their decision.

        Garnacho on the other hand, doesn’t have the similar experience at senior level. 5-10 games, 380 minutes, 2 goals, 2 assists. But i think what held him back the most was Ten Hag benching him at the beginning due to his “sporting attitude” – leaving practice early, walking off the pitch shoes untied, He missed crucial playtime needed the most prior to the WC. And if youre familiar with Ten Hag, that’s the last thing a demanding coach wants or expects from a youngling. Ten Hag also even recently publicly stated:

        “It is a big step to go to a World Cup where all the best players go together,” said Ten Hag. That is a big step and I don’t know if that is the right step for him. I think he has to keep clean, stay calm and work hard and develop, and improve game to game. It’s difficult to say, I don’t know the abilities of all the Argentina players. I know a lot of players from Argentina, but for 26, what is available for them.”.

        This is Garnacho’s manager telling the world and Scaloni what he thinks.

        So, it seems very rationale to think about Garnacho omission in this way, and avoid tabloid stuff that hyper focuses on a “twitter like”

        Personally, i would have rolled the dice and taken Garnacho. That kid seems like he’s on track to be world class. Furthermore, we badly need his blistering pace and directness on the left.

    • @kid, excellent, well written piece. Missed your contributions for quite some time.

      After the WC we will rebuild the team as the thirty something players will retire from the NT. Hopefully with a 3rd star on the shirt but after watching England, France and Spain I have to admit it is unlikely.

    • Kid I still believe that Messi still got the juice. He’s not done yet. Actually this 2022 is the best Messi we have ever seen wearing Argentina t-shirt, even better than the year of 2012 or 2013 peak Messi coached by Sabella. Maybe he doesn’t have the speed or that crazy dribbling anymore, but his other aspects such as understanding of the game, tactical awareness, attacking awareness, and team works improve a lot.

      Messi vs Saudi is easily one of his worst performances in his career, but that’s not him. Watch him again in the next matches. He’s still got it for sure.

      I agree though that if a legend past his best, usually that turns into negative impacts for the whole team especially if he keeps playing heavy minutes. In all team sports is like that. For example I remember when Franco Baresi of Milan or Maldini or Xavi of Barca past their best. All those legends became toxic for their clubs. I remember Milan Baresi losing like 5-0 or something when he was about to retire in a serie A game. But again Messi is NOT that declined yet. CR7 yes he’s declined, that’s why he became a toxic for MU. But Messi not yet. I think Messi still has 1-2 more years before being a toxic.

      I mean it is no fluke if in 2022 Messi scored the most goals in a year for Argentina in HIS CAREER plus 2 trophies plus a 36 games unbeaten. It shows that he’s still got the juice.

      I am sure the same 35 year old Messi if he had played for the peak Barca team today of 2011-2013, the same Messi would have still scored 60 goals plus per season. He is still got it.

  24. Gentlemen, I’m ready to smash my macbook. What’s going on with Toros offside goal? Some no name pundits have identified a criteria error. Instead of Var looking across the entire defensive line, they selected the defender nearest to Toro’s right. But now look at the left fullback, TORO IS CLEARLY ONSIDE. I’m fuming right now, either this is corruption to aid a neighboring country or its just another massive mistake. Although for the latter, i refuse to believe some dumbass in the Var room can be that negligent when it’s so blatantly obvious. Needless to say, if Toro scored, it’s highly likely we would have the match. WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Video for the spanish speakers – youtube.com/watch?v=RCJvi_b7J08

    Website in english – sportbible.com/football/lautaro-martinez-var-argentina-vs-saudi-arabia-offside-20221122

    • It seriously looks like there is a flaw with this VAR software, FIFA need to investigate to either correct the software or abandon it all together, until it can be tested further before it causes more damage in this World Cup. I’m incredibly annoyed that this picture of Lautaro is everywhere now of him being onside. Hey FIFA if you VAR is picking up the wrong defenders that means that means your VAR system isn’t working! Is anyone else checking the decision of the VAR?? That offside call changes the dynamic of the game, if I were AFA I’d ask for that goal and that point. Anyway, my rant is over.

      • The whole idea was wrong to depend on a software. VAR shouldn’t have been used from the first place to circumvent the traditional and more reliable judgments on the pitch set by the referee and linesmen. This is not data programming where you need a software to develop for you the algorithms, this is live sports where human eyes determine the best outcome.

  25. Saturday’s game is easy to read right now. First, Mexico will run all game. They will press, fight, and try everything to frustrate us. If our players do not run and walk the ball up like in the last 4 games we will lose or draw guaranteed. You can take that to the bank. The only way you win this game is by running for 90 plus minutes. This means everybody. That is why guys like Paredes are useless. He is a walking stiff. Horrible work rate and you can count on him to make a couple of hard fouls. If DePaul, Julian,Palacios, Molina, Acuna, Enzo play and run, we can win, if not, we are going home. So sad but true. And Messi needs to actually show up and play instead of his celebrity appearance he made yesterday.

  26. Saudi Arabia held a high line, that was their plan. This is not unique or novel. Where is this high line? The highest forward – Lautaro Martinez in our case. Therefore what is needed is another player who can run from behind Lautaro and get into the empty space. Do we have anyone who has the speed to run from behind? If so, we would have won. There were 2 options
    1. Di Maria: But he was tugged on the right flank
    2. Alvarez: But he didn’t play first half.

    I would have made it a 4-4-2. Get more body in the middle and Lautaro hold the high line and Alvarez run from deep. Take turn and repeat.

    Just so you know, Lo Celso wouldn’t have made any difference. He could have passed a couple more, but Messi or Lautaro would have been offside.

  27. Dybala is the only player who can replace Lo Celso.
    Play Dybala in place of Papu Gomez.
    Yes Dybala is a little less defensive, but in attack he surpasses even Lo Celso.

    I don’t see the reason with this fear of attack.
    Diego Maradona’s attacking team may have lost to Germany in 2010, but they beat 4 teams in succession within 90 minutes before that. Diego’s team got struck with an early goal against Germany which affected the result. Also, Diego’s team ran less and had a weaker midfield and communication.

    And please remember that neither Mexico nor Poland are Germany 2010.

    We need to win the next match, and we can’t do that by just being defensively solid.

  28. More I think of it, I am worried about the mentality. When a team wins they have a hunger for winning. But it seems like ours have gone the other way. Still celebrating the Copa win. If they can come out of the mindset, they might make a difference on Saturday.

    This team is not going to go too far. The mental pressure of getting knocked out every game is going to break them. Someone said earlier, I don’t see any mentally tough player. Messi being the weakest is a big problem. Every time the team is in any kind of pressure, he starts walking with his heads down. I only saw Di Maria trying to do something.

    Scaloni must have the balls to drop or take Messi out. Play Dybala or others who will fight. We miss Mascherano type leadership in the field. Like Frank Labauf said yesterday, Zidane was the best player in the team but it was Deschamps, La Blaunc and Desssaily who were the leaders. We don’t have any such.

  29. Guys, I’ve been following this board since the 2010 World Cup. I know this is predominately not an Argentinian board (I am American, but with Argentinian parents), what I can’t understand from this base is.. how do we trounce this team after 2-1 loss, which really, we didn’t play bad in? The team has gone 36 games unbeaten, it’s a World Cup. All is not lost, we are still Argentina. I decided to come back to the board just to try and lift spirits. Rest assured we’ll turn it around on Saturday

    • You are correct to some extent, I believe in the players, but I don’t trust the coach any further. He didn’t come prepared for this world cup evident in his player selection, starting 11, and game plan. He’s Sampoali’s student: experimenting during the world cup his formation and player position. Sorry, this strategy won’t win you games. Period.

      • Although I do agree, testing a new strategy was not the best idea, however had the VAR worked in our favor 2-0 would have probably lead to a different result and feeling. I think we shouldn’t change the winning strategy we’ve been using since the Copa win

  30. We need to play to our strength and following the system that gave us results in the past.

    We should keep the 4-3-3 formation. I still wonder why Scaloni changed it to 4-2-3-1 and it took so much time to realize that it wasn’t working.

    A good player can look bad in a day but bringing in a substitute doesn’t guarantee that we will play better. Let the machine work as it has been working and change few rusty parts with new ones.

    Regarding possible changes, I think we shouldn’t make more than 2-3 changes:

    1. Romero->Lisandro (only because of fitness issue)
    2. Tagliafico->Acuna (Acuna is better and the first choice)
    3. Paredes->Enzo/Parades/Guaido (tricky one)
    4. Papu->Enzo/Palacios (Still finding for Celso’s sub). Here, I put some blame to Scaloni for keep experimenting on McAllister and not giving enough time to other options. McAllister is a sub for Parades.

    We never doubted winning against Poland or Mexico. Why we doubt now?

  31. The two goals we conceded were unacceptable! We CAN’T afford to concede those kind of goals in any matches whatsoever or else Lewandowksi will punish us in the last match!! We have to keep it extremely extremely tight in the back!! Any unfit player will have to be benched whether it’s Cuti or Dimaria or Paredes. I understand we were robbed by the buggy software FIFA has introduced without any testing apparently but the goals conceded were not the fault of the software. Cuti had already lost posession few times and misplaced passes in the first half and it was quite obvious he is not match fit and Scaloni failed to see that in the traning!! Why disaster has to strike for our coaches to react why??? He also failed to sub out Lautaro and play Alvarez as no-9 and bring in Dybala again!! If you are not going to use Dybala to get an equalizer then when are you going to use him WHEN?? I don’t blame anyone for our loss yesterday other than Scaloni. He was outwitted and outclassed and his contagious arrogance and oveconfidence spread to his players. Hopefully , everyone has learned their lesson and it will be a wake up call for us and also a blessing in disguise. If Saudi manages to beat any one of the other two and not lose any match and Denmark manages to beat France again then we will be on the other bracket!! France, Spain, Holland and Brazil on the other side!!

  32. If you look at our midfield, who is most creative? Palacios, DePaul and really nobody else. Enzo Guido Paredes MacAllister all really defensive midfielders. Papu is a midget forward who is way past his prime. So we play long pass because no midfield creativity. We don’t even play the guy we have like Palacios. That’s why everything is a long pass. And really DePaul isn’t even that great, very good but not great. All we do is create 5 foot 5 inch forwards and say they are the next messi, aka luka Romero, exequiel zeballos, and on and on.

  33. We don’t have players except messi, di Maria and dybala who excel in one to one. Not selecting Giovanni siomone is big mistake as he’s player who can score in crucial time like after 80 minutes when we need goals, if Giovanni siomone was their he would have scored two header which messi and Alvarez failed to scored and if we have garnacho then he would’ve run riot in left wing position with his pace and trickery.

  34. Spain, England, France as of now are on another level even if they are doing it against Minnows. Spain genuienly are a team to beat.

    Spain midfield is an art. Look at those young players, they are so young like 18, 19 years wow. They are the starters. They will lead the team for years.

    Argentinean managers rarely do that unless u are so special like Maradona or Messi. Our managers generally dont start any young players especially that young.

    • Or May be(if Guido is fit):
      ………………..Lautaro………………..
      ….Dybala……Messi…..Di-Maria..
      ………De-Paul…..Guido………..
      Acuna..Lisandro..Otamendi..Molina
      …………..……Emiliano………………..

      Papu Gomes, Paredes, C.Romero etc can be substitutes

      Reply

    • Or May be(if Paredes improves):
      ………………..Lautaro………………..
      ….Dybala……Messi…..Di-Maria..
      ………De-Paul…..Paredes………..
      Acuna..Lisandro..Otamendi..Molina
      …………..……Emiliano………………..

      Papu Gomes, Enzo, C.Romero etc can be substitutes

      Reply

    • Or May be(give C.Romero another chance):
      ………………..Lautaro………………..
      ….Dybala……Messi…..Di-Maria..
      ………De-Paul…..Enzo………..
      Acuna..Otamendi..C.Romero..Molina
      …………..……Emiliano………………..

      Papu Gomes, Paredes, Lisandro etc can be substitutes

      Reply

    • Our midfield will be over-run. Its either Dimaria or Dybala not both, unless we are trailing and desparetely need a goal like yesterday but Scaloni didn’t even bother to use Dybala!!! if you want to use only 2 mids then it has to be 5 in the back like PSG. 2010 against Germany , Diego did something like this and we know the rest. It’s a match we can’t afford to lose, may be not win…(which is also inconceivable) but absolutely not afford to lose , that means no conceding goals.

      • The situation in 2010 was different.
        And don’t forget that Diego’s team actually won 4 matches in a row within 90 minutes before they lost. Even Sabella’s team had to go to extra time before they could win 4 in a row.

        We need to win the next match. And Mexico is no Germany.
        We need to take a tiny bit of risk which was lacking through out the Saudi game.

        And Di-Maria does track back sometimes.
        Also even Messi actually started out as attacking mid and not striker before Guardiola made him a striker. He too can help in the midfield.

  35. Imagine we used to have Riquelme and Aimar at same time. Aimar even was not able to start too because of Riquelme.

    Fast forward now, none of our midfielders are creative enough to share burden from Messi. It was Lo Celso little bit. Other than that who is Creative in our reserves? Almada, Macallister who looks a similar player like Paredes.

    Or football may have changed now. We dont make Enganches any more isnt it. Every young Argentina football players nowadays wanna be Messi.Cant blame them too.

    • It’s not only that. It is the style of play. The way Messi has to drop deep to pick up the ball from the midfield, it’s unnecessary. I always hated it since 2016 when we actually had Pastore, etc. It’s like the players lose their personality to cater to Messi. Brazil used to do this with Neymar. Now, look at their complete team. Look at all the major national teams. Messi needs to be the cherry on top of the cake, not the egg, milk, and frosting. He is not a midfielder because he won’t track back at his age, so he needs to let the midfielders do their jobs early on and then move to up when needed. After Enzo came in, he kept coming up to ask for the ball. I feel Enzo (like Riquelme), Parades (or MacAllister), and Depaul can run the midfield show. Messi needs to preserve his energy.

  36. This world cup has reeked of money changing hands and back door deals from the minute it was announced and it now it seems to be playing out on the field. This WC is a disgrace, It seems like FIFA will do anything to give the advantage to lower teams. Why have VAR when it takes legitimate goals away? VAR is a license to cheat.

  37. I am not really a MacAllister fan, but I can see how if he had been playing again at Saudi Arabia our midfield might have been more balanced.
    I hope he plays against Mexico just so we can see if his support would help the other 2 midfielders play better.
    I kept wondering why De Paul and Paredes didn’t play well, but someone mentioned that Saudi Arabia always had about 5 guys in the midfield and it makes sense. With Papu attacking instead of doing a bit more defense/support, the other two midfielders were overwhelmed.
    If we all see it, we know that Scaloni sees it. I’m sure he will make some good adjustments.

  38. I always preferred a more traditional defensive midfielder or cinco de marca over deep lying midfielder. Paredes is a great passer but I am not sure his pros outweigh his cons, If Guido is fit and fully recovered from his cold I think he should start. He also played in Mexico for many years and might be an additional asset in that regard.

    However, De Paul should show up this time. Our midfield must show up. If we see Messi dropping deep again we are doomed.

  39. Paredes and DePaul had attitude issue. I would expect Otamendi to be the leader to yell at them.

    Paredes is definitely capable of making quick and one touch pass. Not sure why he always liked to slow down the tempo no matter the situation.