Only one of Lionel Messi and Ángel Di María would start for Argentina vs. Ecuador


Only one of Lionel Messi and Ángel Di María would be starting for the Argentina national team vs. Ecuador.

Lionel Messi did not play for Argentina vs. Peru and could start the quarter final match for Argentina vs. Ecuador on the bench. According to Gastón Edul, only one of Messi and Di María will play against Ecuador.

Per the report, if the match were to take place tomorrow, Messi would be the substitute and he would be substituted in the second half.


  1. A lot of this is a game of chess mixed with unknowns for scaloni.
    He will not give the lineup away now. And also he isn’t sure of Messi.
    The givens and absolutes are depaul, Romero, Tagla, Molina at this point.
    For me I would go with the tried and true. Same lineup as always to start on terms of midfield and defense. The question becomes how do you setup the offense without Messi. Is it Nico Alvarez Fideo. Or do you go back to the midfield and thicken it more offensively with Macca?

  2. The officiating has been horrendous throughout Copa. I have never seen inept referees. Yellow cards are nonexistent for rough, ankle-breaking challenges, and VAR takes way too long when everyone in the living room and the crowd sees the replays and can quickly determine whether the play is offside or not.

    The way it’s going I expect fights in Brazil/Colombia match and straight red cards during knockout rounds. It will get worse.

    • He’s playing Licha because Licha is class! The guy is a superb CB, excellent reading of the game, great with the ball at his feet and has a very controlled temperament despite his “butcher” moniker.
      As for the height thing, well yes he is short for a CB but he happens to be very good in the air and stats prove it. Also remember that Cannavaro, Baresi, Ayala, Passarella and even Mascherano (spent most of his time in Barca as a CB) were all 5.8-5.9 range.
      Height is an advantage in the air that’s for sure, but it’s the anticipation and positioning that truly determines whether someone is effective in the air or not.

    • In South America, the football is generally more technical than just spamming long balls in the air for poachers to wait and convert. And while Ota is fantastic in the air, not just with intercepts but also an excellent exponent of headers in the opponent box, he has been error prone against high pressing and technical teams. Licha is much more press resistant, excellent anticipator, great reader of the game, and an overall great ball playing CB who could operate both as an LCB and Left back depending on what is needed. Also, his understanding with Cuti on the pitch is very underrated.

    • @All Lisandro is one of the five best defender PL as per PEP. So no doubt over his ability. If hight is the main factor then we should play G.Pezzala! So that is not the case here. Yes it is right that if Lisandro has more hight he would be the most desirable defender for all coaches. He proved in MU that he can deal with anybody though he is shorter than other players.

      • LICHA and CUTI, though it will TaKe very big sum of money for another club’s to buy them as if so they Could and should end up the most expensive defenders in football’s history as, that good they truly are compared to the list as it stands :

        Rank Player Date From To Transfer Fee
        1. Harry Maguire Aug. 5, 2019 Leicester City Man United €87m (£78.3m / $95.7m)
        2. Josko Gvardiol Aug. 5, 2023 RB Leipzig Man City €90m (£77m / $99.2m)
        3. Matthijs de Ligt July 18, 2019 Ajax Juventus €85.5m (£76.9m / $94.1m)
        4. Virgil van Dijk Jan. 1, 2018 Southampton Liverpool €84.6m (£76.2m / $93.1m)
        5. Wesley Fofana Aug. 31, 2022 Leicester City Liverpool €82.5m (£74.3m / $90.8m)
        6. Lucas Hernandez July 1, 2019 Atletico Madrid Bayern Munich €80m (£72m / $88m)
        7. Ruben Dias Sep. 29, 2020 Benfica Man City €71.6m (£64.4m / $78.8m)
        8. Matthijs de Ligt July 19, 2022 Juventus Bayern Munich €67m (£60.3m / $73.7m)
        9. Achraf Hakimi July 6, 2021 Inter Milan PSG €66.5m (£59.9m / $73.2m)
        10. Marc Cucurella Aug. 5, 2022 Brighton Chelsea €65.3 (£58.8m / $71.8m)
        11. Aymeric Laporte Jan. 30, 2018 Athletic Club Man City €65m (£58.5m / $71.5m)
        Joao Cancelo Aug. 7, 2019 Juventus Man City €65m (£58.5m / $71.5m)
        13. Ben White July 30, 2021 Brighton Arsenal €58.5m (£52.7m / $64.4m)
        14. Benjamin Mendy July 24, 2017 Monaco Man City €57.5m (£51.8m / $63.3m)
        15. Lisandro Martinez July 27, 2022 Ajax Man United €57.4m (£51.6m /

        So it is quite relativismia easy to say, that CUTI and LICHA should be on top this list and easily so !

        As maybe Gvardiol is the only one who would join them in top 3 CB’s in the world currently ! Or perhaps Ruben Dias, but for other names on this list respectively, well they are all behind LICHA