Cafu: “I’m going for Messi and then for Argentina”


Cafu has spoken about wanting Lionel Messi to win the World Cup with Argentina.

The Brazilian legend has lifted the trophy with Brazil and now wants Lionel Messi to lift it. Speaking in an interview with Ole Clarin, here is what he had to say:

“I’m going for Messi and then for Argentina. Why wouldn’t I want Messi to be champion?

“If Brazil isn’t there, I’m going for Messi. He is having a great World Cup. After losing the first match, Argentina and him were harshly criticized and they had them out of the World Cup. Then, suddenly, he took control and responsibility. It’s as if he said “give it to me” and he was obliged to make his national team better. And he achieved that.”

When asked where else Argentina are strong:

“Your defense. It is very, very solid. They defend compactly and it will be very difficult for the French to score a goal.”


  1. With France having a bunch of extremely talented footballers like MBappe, Giroud, Griezman, Dembele, Rabiot, Kunde and who have played very good football so far in the World Cup, it would be a test of Scaloni as a tactical coach above all. We have our share of talent too. But our most talented player and, perhaps, the most talented player ever is not getting younger. He is having a great world cup. But Poland showed that he can be bottled up. We have young talents who have shown great intent like Enzo, MacAllister and Alvarez. But they have not played as much together as MBappe, Giroud, Griezman, Dembele. Though we have seen some brilliant moments of them coming together, we cannot deny that we have not seen their coordination having reached its smoothest form. As they play more matches together, they can take us to newer heights. On paper, we have a more solid defence. While we have seen their solidity against Mexico, Poland and Croatia, we cannot deny that we have seen their frailness against Saudi, Australia and Netherlands. We know what can happen if suddenly Otamendi or Paredes can get hot headed. We also suffered from the fact that our main number 9 went out of form, one of our most creative players Lo Celso remained out of the tournament and we had our moments of in-tournament injuries like Di Maria & De Paul. Despite all these shortcomings we are in the final because of the grit, the teammanship and bit of a luck. But finals are always different beasts altogether. Copa Final was an example where some players like Emi Martinez, Montiel, De Paul and Di Maria stood taller above the Brazil players. It did not seem like a tactical win of Scaloni. This final we face a team which is almost as talented as Brazil and which has a player named MBappe. We know what MBappe did to us in 2018. So Scaloni’s decision with the starting XI and the flexibility of changing plans during the game would be key to our success. National Coaches always have a bigger challenge at hand compared to the club coaches, who get the time and number of matches to build cohesive teams. National coaches need to be much sharper in building the cohesion because they get much lesser time. Let’s see how sharp Scaloni is. This is his career’s biggest match and he is facing the toughest opponent so far.

  2. When to comes to France, Montiel vs. Molina is a tough choice IMO.
    Molina tends to track Mbappe whereas Montiel goes into a tackle/interception to stop the run before it happens.
    Tracking Mbappe doesn’t end well all the time either. But it can put some mental pressure on him.
    Against Morocco they took the Montiel approach and both goals were because the crucial pass interception failed and Fra had plenty of negative space behind the failed tackle to flood the box with attackers and make something dangerous happen.

  3. This is our 6th WC Final, Till now 5 WC Finals we played won 2 of it, So 2 out of 5, So it should become 3 out of 6 is int it? Getting Mad. The day is getting longer. Cant wait to watch the kick off.

    I want the WC to be every 2 year or at least 3 year, hope FIFA makes it happen(I know too much of anything even if it is sweeter is also not good) But still these moments were all of us coming together, this pressure and tense moments and this heart beat skipping moments is all worth it. None of the other tournaments can provide this, World cup is special as much i like the Copa America, Still the WC is were the world is watching. This is like a family gathering. 4 year is too much, Our life’s are drastically changing every 4 years.

      • 3 don’t sounds bad, Its long also and not too short either. Tired of this Club football. The National football should have been prioritized. Anyway that’s not gonna happen ever. UEFA don’t allow even a slight glitch in their schedule. UEFA is the actual rulers. FIFA is working for them.

      • Right, TY! People don’t realize, it is, and exactly, that four year span that makes the World Cup uniquely special. Take that away and you take away most of its magic. In any case both Conmebol and UEFA, plus majority of fans are dead set against killing the World Cup mystic. Vamos Argentina 🇦🇷!!! A lot of these ignorant football fans who only know about European teams winning the Cup need to learn a lesson.

  4. So according to Edul the final formation is between:
    Di Maria—DePaul—Enzo——MacAllister

    ———-De Paul——MacAllister

    1. With Di Maria it will be 4-4-2 not 4-3-3 that means Scaloni will ask Di Maria to do more defensive duty than usual

    2. 4-4-2 with Paredes is crossed out. Which makes sense because 4-4-2 with Paredes is only done to counter Croatia 4-3-3 with their world class midfielders only. France midfield need no counter, their wingers need counter.

    3. There is also a chance it is Montiel instead of Molina as Scaloni has been practicing. I say if 3-5-2 it is Molina. If 4-4-2 it is 50-50 between Molina and Montiel as they will combine with Di Maria.

    Verdict: I say both formation are the best formation we can possibly field. I vote for Di Maria one and hope for a 1-0 lead or so and switch to the 3-5-2. Not the other way around. If we lead 1-0, it makes no sense to switch to Di Maria formation.

    • 5-3-2 is best to counter France. When Dembele and Mbappe face 1v1 with wingbacks there are 2 possibility : they dribble past them, in this case Romero and Lisandro can clear. And they can move to center, in this case De Paul and Maca can counter them. Midfield 3 is enough to counter Griezmann and whatever threat Tchoumani posses.

      However, we will be thin in attack. We scored goals against dutch but our life was not easy. Players were too far apart and we could not play short pass and interchanges. This is why i do not like it. It is too Messi magic dependent.

      4-4-2 with Di Maria gets my vote. They have 3 players who can change the game. We need at least 2.

      Let’s not under prepare for them but Let’s not fear them too much.

    • Interesting. The 442 with Fideo reminds me of the Brazil final a bit, which could be the best compromise between keeping a defensive shape while also starting the player who has to start in finals. In that case I could imagine a fairly routine switch of a forward/midfielder for Licha (Di María in this case) if we are leading in the second half.
      I like your wingers explanation too Mafioso, that also adds merit to switching to that 3 at the back shape at a point of the game in which (hopefully) one of those difference makers will have made the difference, stop their onslaught of late game desperate wingers

    • If Di Maria is in the starting XI, we perhaps do not need the attacking power of Molina. Montiel can be leveraged to do a gritty Copa Final. If Di Maria is not in the starting XI, then Molina is a must to have. We have been talking about Griezman, MBappe, Giroud, Dembele. But there are two other players who are doing extremely well – Rabiot and Kunde. Rabiot is quite good in a 3-5-2 formation in Juventus. But Enzo and Otamendi did fairly well against Rabiot’s attacking role when Benfica faced Juventus.

    • Hi ElPrincipe

      What about the last formation against Croatia 4-4-2 with 4 Midfielders and No Di Maria? Would that be too defensive?

      Which was our best performance in the World Cup so far

      As I don’t think 3-5-2 will be effective against France , but who am I to disagree with Scaloni and his coaching staff

      Just curious what you think would be the best Formation vs France

      Thank you

      • I like 4-4-2 with Di Maria the best. The reason is we are going to get the first goal. That is our aim. If we get the first goal and the we switch to 3-5-2 with Licha instead of Di Maria, it makes sense.

        But if we play 3-5-2 and we get the first goal, and then switch to 4-4-2 by replacing Licha with Di Maria, it does not make sense. But i won’t be upset if 3-5-2 as I believe France won’t score against our 3-5-2.

  5. I was so nervous vs Mexico, little bit relaxed vs Poland
    I was tensed vs Australia cuz they had nothing to lose plus it would have been biggest embarrassment ever
    If we were to lose against them
    I was so confident vs the Netherlands.
    I was so worried vs Croatia it was 50-50 in my side and it turned out easiest game a long with Poland we had on this tournament I believed if Argentina beat Croatia they will win world cup that will be the case coming on Sunday God willing.

    • The only time I was a bit nervous was the Mexican game especially when knowing the starting line up was very awkward. Then it is was that the first 45 minutes we played the worst futbol in Scaloni era. When Messi scored that goal, it was such a huge relief especially after we made some changes and looked better in the second half.

      Vs Poland I was calm
      Vs Australia I knew we would win
      Vs Netherlands I was confident
      Vs Croatia I was very confident

      Vs France I am confident especially I have been observing France. They have a big weakness: their left side defense and we have our right side as our strength. France NEVER met a team in the world cup that have strong right side unlike us. England is average in their right. A lot of England attack/goals came from the left/corners. Aussie, Denmark, Tunisia, Poland, and Marocco also average from their right. Think about it..

      • It shows that whenever we were confident of a win, we either lost or struggled badly. For example, Saudi Arabia and Nederlands matches. I think, the team also gets the same complacency as we fans. We are confident of a win against France because of our good results against Croatia. However, we should remember that whenever we were confident we either lost or struggled badly. I do hope it won’t be the case this time.

  6. How most of you are planning to watch the final. Tommarrow will be an iconic day in our life i feel. I would have rather preferred to watch the match during the later timing which is 11pm. Now its 7pm means its earlier. The night matches gives a different vibe.Even if my sleep goes still, If it was 11pm I could have watched it silently in my laptop without disturbing others who are sleeping. This 7pm timing ruined everything. My WC final watching wont be a pleasant experience. No one watches football in my room apart from me 😭😭😭

    Added to all this there will be unwanted performances from some nonsense people who cant even hold a football. We have to see all this non sense. Already we are tensed let the final begin rather than haveing an WC closing ceremony before the Final. Let them have a ceremony after the final. They know then no one will watch it 😂😂😂

    • Where I am, I am going to church right after the game ends (unless it goes into overtime). A few people at church know how excited I am about the game. I wonder how many will be trying to see my reaction. Man, I am really hoping for a win!
      I have real belief, I know we can win. I also know that it can possibly be a very tight game!

  7. “Your defense. It is very, very solid. They defend compactly and it will be very difficult for the French to score a goal.”

    I’m sure the ESPN headquarter is flooded with their salty tears.

  8. With this unprecedented level of support from all over the world and a nearly perfect tournament from 35 yrs old Messi, I just can’t imagine how heartbreaking it will be if we lose on Sunday. God, please let Argentina and Messi win this time.

    • I agree with the unity…. But….and a big but…
      Most south American countries don’t support Argentina football. Only Uruguay does. Trust me, I’ve lived almost everywhere there. Columbia supports us also sometimes too.
      I like Columbia and Peru myself… But go to Lima during a cup and ask them Brazil or Argentina. It will be rare for you to find someone who chooses arg over Brazil.
      They have an idea that Argentines are stuck up and think they are better than other latin Americans. Now this is generally speaking, I’m not talking about your uncle’s friend or that one in every fifty. But trust me, we usually only get support from Uruguay.
      Here’s another example: I was watching an Argentina vs Germany match at a bar in Mexico city a decade back. There were a lot of Peruvians there. All of them were booing me with my Argentina jersey on from the moment I entered the cantina till the end of match when we lost. 😂
      But I also wish Peru qualified.

      • I’ve heard about this from my Mexican friends too. They say Latin Americans generally dislike Argentina. When I asked why, they said “It’s the way they speak” then they just laughed among themselves. So I suspect it’s a cultural thing. Uruguay and Argentina are similar culturally I suppose. So they understand each other better. Like Singapore (where I’m from) and Malaysia. Almost identical food, culture and languages/dialects. Some of our jokes, cannot be translated at all for outsiders. But a Malaysian will always understand a Singaporean joke. And vice versa.

      • That’s interesting, I’ve always heard that Peruvians prefer Argentina and support us sometimes — though the internet (where I’ve heard that) is different from real life.

        Also it’s funny that the group of Mexicans think there is something weird about our accent considering theirs is also vastly different from other parts of Latin America and Spain. Like you say though, Argentina and Uruguay are the most similar, though I have to specify “Buenos Aires accent” because interestingly, the Buenos Aires accent is closer to the Uruguay accent than it is to the Cordoba one or some other provinces in Argentina.

        SorinCrespo, do you have any anecdotes about Chileans? I’m sure they are the worst haha

        • @olive I don’t have any stories about Chileans ironically. The few I’ve known in my time have been really cool people.
          I’ve been around alot of Peruvians where I lived in east coast America in my time. Awesome people and culture. But every single Peruvian I’ve known supports Brazil over Argentina.
          I’ve stayed in Mexico city multiple times and thats a whole planet on its own. It’s more fun to support mexico there. 😂 But awesome city.
          I’ve actually lived in multiple countries in north Africa like Morocco, Egypt and Libya. And Libya has big Argentina fan parties. Like ultras with flame throwers and fireworks…No joke. I was in shock too.

          • Is it because Argentines are of more europeans than latin , if you consider the demography ? I think most of the Argentines are European decent by few generations which is not the case for rest of the Latina. So, I guess as you are saying the other latins may still consider the Argentine whites as Europeans , may be..

          • Dang how many countries have you lived in? Sounds like you relocate to a new continent every 6 months haha
            @Ericsson I think it is possible demography plays a part, as it does between many Latin American countries. But the rivalries stem from many other things too. Argentina have a bitter rivalry with Chile because they helped England during the Malvinas war. Argentina have a big football rivalry with Brazil. Argentina and Uruguay have a back and forth between whether Mate, Asado, and Dulce de Leche is theirs. Other South American countries have rivalries too, also for reasons that may be political, historical, demographic, or football related. In football terms Ecuador – Chile was the showdown of the year, I think Ecuador didn’t let them live down their non-qualification even more so than us.

      • i dunno. I know the stereotype exists but I know quite a bit of colombians, peruvians, venezuelans, el salvadorians, and even *some mexicans that are all supporting argentina now.

        • @olive You can live in different places too, just don’t get married.

          @choripan yes now they are. Now in this cup with Messi they support Argentina. But wasn’t that way in past.
          All of my elsalvador and Honduras and central America friends usually support Argentina in past anyways. But wasn’t the case in my history of copa Americas

    • I know some Brazilians who want Messi to win, some Mexicans too, but I know what SorinCrespo is talking about, the rest of Latin America has a love/hate relationships with Argentina…

    • Kid will do well to stay away from Barcelona. Its not a club for young players who aren’t Spanish.

      He should move to France or Portugal to get closer to a big club if he’s good.

    • Barca have priority signing over Boca recruits from the Barca academy in Argentina.

      I think ot is a myth to say non-native Spanish will have a tough time in Barca. If anything Barca is closely.tied to the catalan culture than native Spanish culture and therefore don’t look at foreigners differently.

      As a Barca fan myself getting a promising Argentine youngster in Barca is long overdue

  9. Many of the Argentine and non-Argentine supporters who are in Qatar took bank loans to travel to Qatar and support the team. Some have sold their land properties, and some were saving for years just to be present at the WC. Argentina has the craziest and most loyal fans around the world. The fans REALLY deserve this WC. I know there is no guarentee we will win, but Messi and the players should do everything for us on Sunday. C’moooon Argentina 💪

    • Last 2 days I am seeing full of Argentine jersey everywhere in Qatar. France jersey.. almost none. I didn’t see even one France jersey outside. I was in Lusail too where thousands of football fans visitors gathering..there also..I didn’t see any France jersey..!
      This is crazy…I can’t imagine a lose..!

  10. I think guido and maria must for final…if 120 minutes playing time level than our success will be came easily…..

    ////////////// Emi Martinez///////////////
    Romero __Otamendi __Martinez

    ______Messi ___Alvarez ________

    France will parking bus and counter against us.. So we need compact defense..

    • Players like Guido and Pezzela won’t get any minute. They are not technically ready for WC. This is the final match, so we can’t send any below average player to the field. Plain and Simple.

    • If you want more solid at defense…

      //////////// Emi Martinez//////////
      Romero _Otamendi_Martinez
      Monila _paul___Enzo__acuna

      ______Messi ___Alvarez ___

      France’s attacks are world class..
      They have Mbappe,, Dembala,, guiro and Gizzman can be Karim benzema..

      Now our playing eleven doesn’t have real Centre Midfielder So we need original Defensive Midfield no need only for box to box Midfielder…

  11. Not news anymore but a great idea in my opinion:

    “For motivation, the Argentine football federation AFA invited several players who were not part of the selection squad to attend the national team camp until the final on Sunday. The players who are part of this process are : Kun Agüero, Joaquín Correa, Nico González and Gio Lo Celso.

    Especially for Agüero, he will share a room with Leo Messi, as they have done for many years in the national team.”

    • In the live interview with messi, papu, etc, Messi said something to Aguero like, “you mean our room?”. At the time Kun was staying elsewhere now Scaloni invites them all for morale and Kun back with Messi. Great move on Scalonis behalf, will def calm the nerves and boost morale.

  12. I do not understand why i keep finding our training clips online is it being “leaked” or “released” because I remember before the quarter final Scaloni was angry about the leakage on Paul injuiry. what is this? Is it still happening?

    • Almost every former great players from Argentina and Brazil are good friends with each other. The rivalry is between fans and the current crop of players, which is natural.

  13. So guys. As 40 year old 1.9m height and 100 kg men i am so affraid of this match. I am so proud of our boys, i pray for win on sunday but scare like hell….. probably from all those heavy defeats in the past, started from italy 90. I am here maybe to find strenght, maybe to be a part of all of you,…. i dont know. The difference from brasil 2014 is that i am now somehow fullfill with joy and so proud because of messi and co. No matter win or lose i will be satisifed. Long live argentina. Vamos selecion. Vamos !!!

  14. 3-5-2 will be the best formation against France, Arg mainly have to stop them during counters so Lisandro is needed. Moreover 4 midfielders are required to take control of Tchouaméni and Rabiot.

  15. According to gastón edul, Scaloni has tried 3-5-2 at 1st training and in 2nd brought di Maria in place of Licha…
    1. Emi
    Cuti Otamendi Licha
    Molina De paul Enzo Macalister Acuna
    Messi. Alvarez

    I think this looks better 👍 he can bring di Maria on the 2nd half for more pace

    • We should have the man of finals Di Maria. If needed in place of MacAllister. Di Maria still can chase the opponent defence hard. So he and Alvarez can press the French defence. De Paul can take care of Griezmann.

  16. These praises and comments were the result of our pure grit, mental strength and fight which we showed till now. It’s not finished yet. After we entered the final many haters commenting the phrase “don’t underestimate”or “don’t jinx it” under the videos of experts saying against Argentina. And this is the proof that even the haters admire the hidden strength and fighting spirit of this team. Finish it with the win and hold that coveted trophy Argentina. And then keep going with all these praises. I don’t mind. I want to see the respect from the Brazilians against playing with the world champions in the next qualifiers and I want to hear it from all the European commentators from the league,the admiration to all Argentine players being the world champion.

  17. So OK
    France score 13 goals in the World Cup. 11 goals came from their left side/left sided players
    Argentina score 12 goals in the World Cup. 5 goals came from the right side.

    France heavily relied on their left side to score.

    France weakness is their left side. So their strongest side is also their weakness.
    Argentine are NOT weak on the right side. They are strong offensively and strong defensively.

    That’s the difference between the two. Whoever wins the battle of that right side, will win the game.

  18. I have a strong feeling that Messi will score a free kick goal, now that Sinisa Mihajlovic has passed away today (one of the greatest free kick takers ever) even more. A commemoration from Messi.

    • As per Addidas All messi jersy sold ahead of WC final. they failed to supply as per demand. Messi jersy sold out from all the major cities in the world. Goat Effect

  19. Even the defense legend is saying that our defense is very strong. But here mundo members does not agree. Looks like mundo members know better than professional footballers.

  20. I never saw any other player getting respect from other nations especially from hardest opponents. No one else but Messi. In addition to his great footballing skills, he earned this respect because of his great personalities.

        • European is united most of the time. Remember anytime Messi won Ballon d’or, he almost always got very few votes from European coaches/captains/medias. Only small European countries and something like Spain voted for him (because of Barca connection only). Messi won the Ballon d’or because mostly of the voting from North American/South American/Asian/Africans countries.

          European have their own pride. They also want another European to win.

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