Argentina’s bid to bounce again from a shock defeat to Saudi Arabia of their World Cup opener comes towards Mexico on Saturday night.
Solely 4 groups within the 90-year historical past of the lads’s World Cup have ever reached the ultimate after shedding their opening match of the event. Diego Maradona famously impressed Argentina to the showpiece in 1990 after Cameroon delivered an upset in the identical realm because the reverse towards Saudi Arabia.
West Germany (1982) and Italy (1994) have additionally recovered from an early setback to look within the ultimate however solely Spain (2010) have lifted the trophy after shedding their opening recreation.
This is the XI Lionel Scaloni could deploy to return to successful methods this weekend.
GK: Emi Martinez – Scaloni rattled by way of eight completely different goalkeepers in lower than 50 matches on the helm earlier than deciding on Martinez.
RB: Nahuel Molina – The Atletico Madrid fullback used to put on a Barcelona reproduction package throughout his childhood kickabouts in Cordoba earlier than becoming a member of the membership’s academy in Buenos Aires. Presumably he has saved his earlier allegiances to himself since arriving in Madrid.
CB: Cristian Romero – Saleh Al-Shehri’s purpose was the primary Romero had conceded whereas on the pitch for Argentina in nearly 15 hours of soccer. He solely needed to wait one other 5 minutes earlier than Salem Al-Dawsari reminded him of the feeling.
CB: Nicolas Otamendi – Mexico’s supervisor Gerardo Martino re-called Otamendi whereas he was in command of the Albiceleste after lacking out on the 2014 World Cup beneath Alejandro Sabella.
LB: Marcos Acuna – After enduring six unsuccessful trials rising up, Acuna is now a part of his second World Cup squad.
CM: Rodrigo De Paul – Enzo Fernandez could also be knocking on the door however De Paul’s place is virtually bulletproof after showing in a team-high 45 matches since Scaloni’s appointment.
CM: Leandro Paredes – One in all many Argentinian gamers that can zoom throughout the pitch as Lionel Messi’s bodyguard ought to he come beneath any overeager bodily consideration, Paredes is definitely focussed on the crew’s quantity ten. “If we win the World Cup,” he mentioned pre-tournament, “I’d be happier for him than I might be for myself.”
AM: Lionel Messi – A tricksy penalty towards Saudi Arabia took Messi’s worldwide purpose tally to 12 for the calendar yr, matching his profession excessive in 2012.
RW: Angel Di Maria – Final summer season, Di Maria left Paris Saint-Germain to affix Juventus with out the Parisians gathering a switch payment. Even his first ever membership transfer, from Rosario Central to El Torito, got here with the promise of 35 footballs.
ST: Lautaro Martinez – “El Toro” comes from a household of footballers which incorporates his father, grandfather and grandmother.
LW: Julian Alvarez – Unsurprisingly, Alvarez considers it a “privilege” to play alongside Messi, a participant the Manchester Metropolis ahead as soon as requested for a photograph when the younger Alvarez was only a fan of the Argentine nationwide crew, slightly than a member.
Harry Symeou hosts Scott Saunders, Grizz Khan and Jack Gallagher to look again on France ’98 as a part of the ‘Our World Cup’ sequence. We make a journey down reminiscence lane – be part of us!
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