Saturday, February 4, 2023

Messi lifts weights against Australia like Maradona 30 years ago

DOHA ( Associated Press) — In 1993, Diego Maradona led Argentina to victory against Australia in the most important game the two teams have ever played in their history. After 29 years, fate wanted Lionel Messi to take charge of the World Cup.

Argentina, two-time world champions, and much-less-scroll Australia will clash in Doha’s Ahmed Bin Ali Stadium on Saturday in the Round of 16, in a table that theoretically appears favorable enough for the Albiceleste to reach December’s final . 18.

In a short history of seven doubles, the most important was done at the end of 1993 in the playoff for the 1994 World Cup. Argentina did not pass the South American qualifying round after Colombia handed them an embarrassing 5–0 defeat. Maradona, who had left the team after his first doping test, decided to help the team on their trip to Oceania.

With the star’s momentum, Argentina won the first leg and tied the rematch in Buenos Aires, keeping a World Cup ticket.

Nearly three decades later and in an even more impressive scenario, captain Messi will seek to become the talisman of a team that began the competition with an unexpected shock win against Saudi Arabia, but has rebounded after victories over Mexico and Poland. Emerged and came to the fore. a candidate.

The “Soccers”, for their part, managed to win twice in the same tournament for the first time in history and repeated Germany’s 2006 feat when they were among the best of 16.

Argentina will try not to stumble over the same stone again. Just as victory against the Saudis was taken for granted, it now has more obligations than its next opponent.

Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni warned, “Anyone who thinks Australia will be an easy game is wrong.” “They are all tough matches. Arab beat us and nobody expected it. Football today is game by game. Even playing well you can lose.”

The coach called for discretion after Argentina’s best ever game at the World Cup, with a Messi who knew how to recover from missed penalties and flanked by youngsters Alexis McAllister and Enzo Fernandez in midfield and Julian Alvarez up front. Brought freshness.

Scaloni did not repeat the team in the tournament and it is unclear whether he can do so due to the muscular overload suffered by winger Ángel Di María. There is no player with similar characteristics in the team, so if he does not play, the plan can be changed.

An alternative would be the return to the team of striker Lautaro Martínez, who was a substitute against Poland, and Álvarez taking over Di Maria’s position.

In Australia, they do not think it is impossible to beat Messi’s Argentina to reach an unprecedented quarter-final.

“It’s going to be a tough game. Obviously, playing against probably the best footballer ever in this game”, defender Milos Degenek admitted. “(But) they’re eleven versus eleven. Eleven isn’t Messi. There’s one”.

Forward Matthew Leckie said, “There’s no pressure for us.” “We just need to enjoy the moment, enjoy this opportunity. And like I said, nobody expected us to win. So let’s surprise the world.”

The survivor of this key would face the winner of the Netherlands-United States match.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
Nation World News is the fastest emerging news website covering all the latest news, world’s top stories, science news entertainment sports cricket’s latest discoveries, new technology gadgets, politics news, and more.
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