Gonzalo HIGUAIN on Argentina return: “I’m happy about it”

Gonzalo Higuain Argentina return Juventus

Gonzalo HIGUAIN commented on his Argentina return and the World Cup.

Hot off the heels of a big 2-1 win in the Champions League with Juventus against Tottenham, HIGUAIN commented on his return to the Argentina National Team. Having only been included in Jorge SAMPAOLI’s initial Argentina squad against Brazil and Singapore, Gonzalo was later left out of the remaining World Cup Qualifying and friendly matches.

Back in the team for the matches against Spain and Italy, HIGUAIN spoke with Marca about his return and the World Cup. Here’s what he said:

Gonzalo HIGUAIN on his Argentina return

“Happy about it. Two important matches, one of them against Spain, which will be a good opportunity to show the potential of Argentina facing the World Cup. I enjoy the national team and there are still important challenges.

How far can Argentina go in the World Cup?

“With humility, but we aspire to win everything, but first the two friendlies of this month and then to think about the World Cup. It’s time to be Calm.


  1. 10XEEM

    I have a gut feeling that sampaoli gonna take these local 5+centurion to the world cup,if that happens i am certain we have a strong side on paper and on field.
    midfield would be

  2. kavindrs

    Banega has highest passing rate in Champion league,Biglia is being compared to Pirlo at Milan,Maschwrano is coach’s coach,Liverpool is interested on Lanzini,Acuna is good,Lamela is talented,Gago is always praised by Sampoli,Maxi Meza is athletic.Sometime they play bad but that’s natural.We need to just organise them,whole should be larger than it’s parts that should be our aim.

  3. dollon biswas

    This is not fair,We have No time to experiment ..We need our best player Right Now against Italy and Spain.
    .if I was there then my team can be———



    Something like—-




    Attack is the best policy of Defence..

    My sub…Rojo,,lamela,Aliaro,,Lanzini,,taglifico..Bustos..

    1. dollon biswas

      Angel Correa,,locelso,,Agüero,Romero..Rulli insted of Lanzini/Perroti ..
      That is my 23 ..

  4. Richard

    Tickets for Argentina vs Italy finally went on sale: https://tickets.mancity.com/events.aspx

  5. anuparno

    Now seems bustos is also injured hope the injury is not so serious

  6. anuparno

    mammana out injured another one out for wc so sad he was a good option in back we have too much injuries in defence. right now biggest concern is defence specially right back and centre back position specially if otamendi gets injured we are in trouble

  7. kavindrs

    What is the status of Gago is he fully recovered.He is another contender for no.5 position He will be good sub for NT.We have so many talented midfielders.I do not know how Sampoli gonna to use them.But he will find a solution.

    1. anuparno

      no gago plz he is made of glass

      1. Argentina2018

        He used to be made of glass, now he’s made of ash.

        1. Dfox1942

          Gago lol is a NO GO.

    2. anuparno

      “We have so many talented midfielders” oh really?? Last time I checked they are on par with midfield of a stoke or a crystal palace or espanyol standard lol.don’t be serious they are not that bad but still quite mediocre for a team aspiring to win the cup

  8. Argentina2018

    I will say something here, and I’m sure you all will attack me. That’s fine with me and I accept it for saying the truth.

    Sampaoli is not stupid, and he knows how Dybala is a joker for any club or NT. The truth is that Messi doesn’t want Dybala in the team as he thinks the latter would preclude his free movement and block spaces for him. The problem is that Messi doesn’t welcome the idea of having Dybala with him in the NT.

    The question remains: What if Messi got injured during the world cup, who else will take or substitute for his role? Sampaoli should ask himself twice before omitting Dybala completely.

    1. Sabellista

      You’re jumping to concludions way too early. Dybala was not called up due to his condition at the time. Don’t forget that Dybala was one of the players Sampaoli spoke to about WC preparations on his recent European player consultation tour.

  9. guled

    Lazy aguero is out for 2 weeks.
    Will sampaoli call dybala or icardi or he will continue to please the local media by calling local based striker.

    1. Argentina2018

      He won’t call Dybala or Icardi just in case they steal the show and finds himself obliged to take them to Russia. He will leave his spot vacant or take an unknown local striker just for this match and disposed for the world cup. Aguero and Higuaín forever anthem will resonate all over again until they retire or die.

  10. KidultHood

    It sad a top quality player like Lamela can’t even make the Argentina national team. And this is not the worse part. Look at the players they selected ahead of him; the inexperience Lo Celso, Lanzini and Paredes. Average players don’t win world cup.

    1. qwerty

      Lamelas isnt a starter yet….i agree though that we should call him up. Perfect player for Sampa, high presser, tenacious in defense and has excellent playmaking abilities.

      1. KidultHood

        This is not about starting, only Sampaoli decides who starts, so I don’t waste my time picking starting XI here. What I do advocate for is the players I want to see on the current Argentina national team roster. Me saying Lamela should be on the team doesn’t necessarily mean he should walk right into the starting XI. Lamela and Joaquin Correa will give the Argentina national team energy on the wings and through the midfield if they should drift inside the pitch. This is what guys like Sane and Marco Asensio will give Germany and Spain. Mediocrity players like Lanzini and Paredes should not be on the world cup squad. If Lo Celso do make it, I don’t mind though. No one can convince me on Paredes and Lanzini being credible world cup players.

        1. Sabellista

          Lamela is not a CM as Lo Celso or Paredes. And Lanzini scores and creates more often from midfield than Lamela in the EPL. I’m sure Sampaoli is aware of that.

        2. Mik

          Lamela should be considered in my opinion but he just came back after a long gap, But the same rules are not applied to Rojo & Mori, So thats frustrating he was once the next big thing. And another thing Lamela plays in a similar system as like Sampaoli’s. And to be honest Players like Paredes, Lanzini, Lo Celso etc should have been tested way back in so many friendlies, These guys have only played 1 or 2 matches for us how can they sink with the system & other players. In my opinion we wasted so many friendlies during the TATA era. BAUZA & SAMPA both didnt have time to form a team because of the pressure situation where as TATA had so much time. And yet he wasted it.

    2. guled

      Paredes plays different position and is quality player.lanzini is better and tougher player than girly lamela.
      Lo celso isn’t ready now.

  11. vimaldass

    Tagliafico scored his first goal for ajax in their 4-1 win over heerenveen earlier.

  12. Argentina2018

    Its funny how someone here said it was good that Guardiola left Aguero fresh with healthy legs.
    Aguero’s knee injury challenged the top elite of physicians in the world. It’s a chronic syndrome that will stay with him. His knee injury will haunt him for the rest of his career. He will join the squad in Russia I’m sure just because he’s Aguero only to take selfies and chase Russian girls.

    1. jerry dieugeville

      Is lo Celso really better than Lamela🧐
      I always feel like for some reason whatever coach Argentina have they always someway somehow find a way to f&ck shit up….

    2. guled

      Aguero is the worst of the useless trio(hig.maria.kun).

  13. Csabalala


    During yesterday’s training I had a discomfort on my left knee. The club’s doctors told me I’ll be back with the team in approximately two weeks. Now it’s time for a full recovery!

    So Dybala or Icardi in?

    1. Dfox1942

      Sooooo, a replacement is in order……who will it be Sammy Boy?

      1. guled

        He will call old donkey tevez.

        1. Argentina2018

          Exactly, and it won’t surprise me. Either Tevez or Lavezzi.

    2. KidultHood

      Are you buying into this? The latest Aguero training ground injury is dubious at best. It’s no coincidence this current injury pertaining to Kun Aguero will take him two weeks to recover in the same time period of the Argentina national team friendly dates. If Manchester City were to play Real Madrid next week I can assure you the doctors would update Aguero as fit for the game. Manchester City have a busy schedule coming up; closing in on the EPL title, FA Cup and UCL. Do you really think Pep and Man City want to lose Aguero due to injury over the international break for such a crucial period for the club? The training ground injury is like the oldest trick in the game of football. Not buying the latest Aguero injury, it’s not like Manchester City needed Aguero to play against relegated threaten Stoke City anyways.

      1. imtiaz

        They are out of the FA cup, EPL is as good as won and Gabriel Jesus is back from injury. There has always been rumour that Guardiola prefers Jesus. Given the frosty relationship between Aguero and Guardiola, don’t really understand why would Aguero fake an injury ahead of an important NT friendly. Accusing players of something fictional isn’t really a good practice. Aguero did participate in our last couple of friendlies in the middle of the season, didn’t he?

        1. KidultHood

          What does this have to do with Gabriel the poacher? After the international break, Manchester City will have to play UCL quarterfinal, (anyone of Real, Bayern, Juve, Barcelona/Chelsea is a possible opponent) Everton, Manchester United and Tottenham in the EPL. Aguero is City top goal scorer for this season and the club all time goal scorer, nobody cares what Pep thinks about Aguero. Gabriel will never reach Aguero level at Manchester City. Sergio Aguero is for Manchester City what Thierry Henry and Bergkamp was for Arsenal. Manchester City will find it hard to replace a striker of Aguero quality at the club. Pep didn’t like Toni Kroos at Bayern and sold him to Real Madrid, and we all know what happen since then. Pep never like Ronaldinho, Zlatan, Schweinsteiger etc. Not because Pep is not fond of a player means they’re not good.

          1. imtiaz

            @kid, Gabriel is the only other striker in the City squad. He benched Aguero at the start of the season. Now he has nothing to do with Aguero’s situation? City are four wins away from winning EPL. They will do it with or w/o Aguero.
            Pep is the manager of City. He picks the squad. And it doesn’t matter what Pep thinks about Aguero?!
            Right after accusing Aguero of faking an injury, now you’re defending him?? Come on man! you must be a grown up man by now. Use some sensible logic.

      2. de rossi

        stop those conspiracy theories. didn’t pogba get injured in training before the liverpool game? are u saying man u never wanted him to play for france? injuries can even happen in a training setup.training involve running & a player can pull his muscle or something. besides kun wouldn’t agree to such a move given the competition for strikers in the team.

  14. imtiaz

    Higuain, the cold blooded killer, just missed a penalty. He will hold his nerve and win us the WC.

    1. de rossi

      Higuain is overrated. its high time argentina looked for another striker. higuain misses too many easy chances & has too much pride for the talent he possesses. he doesnt chase after the ball like suarez or kane when he loses it. you hv to b a messi, neymar, cr7 or hazard to get such treatment. dybala would make the best 9 for sampaoli. besides he played in that position for palermo. argentina needs some 1 who can press the opponents defenders for 90 min. dybala can play with messi provided they dont play next to each other. i hv no doubt a great coach like pep would fit in the both of them in the same team with no problem. kun is the other option for argentina provided sampaoli ask’s him to press or b benched.

      1. KidultHood

        Kane? Where was he in the second leg against Juventus? Higuaín single handily carry Juventus pass Tottenham with three goals and an assist over both ties. Suarez need 50 chances to score one goal for Barcelona. The teams are so easily to beat in Spain Suarez misses are never costly. It’s easier to score in Spain than in Italy. What have Hazard done outside of England? Hazard is the player who flops every season in the UCL. Where was Hazard against Barcelona? was he even playing? Better yet, where was Hazard the seasons before in the UCL? It’s laughable you even put Hazard in the same sentence as Messi which shows you don’t have a clue what you’re talking about. Imtiaz by the way is definitely a TROLL or a Russian Bot.

        1. imtiaz

          Are you the guy who promised to eat shit if we managed to win the WC14 final? I am sorry I’ve forgotten his name. But you sound a lot like him.

          1. king joe


          2. KidultHood

            So, what now, you’re trying to sound tough over the web Russian Bot? Haha. Stick to cricket or whatever sport they play on your side of the world.

          3. Istiaque

            Hey kiddo, I thought you lived in tge USA.

            So shouldn’t you stick to American football then?

          4. imtiaz

            @kid, So it’s you then…let me laugh first HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAA

          5. imtiaz

            After all your dubious useless logic, “Stick to cricket ” is your last resort? LMAO. Don’t start name calling pls. Because if I start calling you eat-shit-kid, you will lose your head in no time :v

      2. imtiaz

        @de rossi,I have no problem with the qualities of Higuain as a striker. I must admit he is one of the top strikers in terms of quality. But the guy is a choker. He has never scored in any final in his life. He is the reason we are without a Copa/WC title in the last 4years. I most definitely don’t want him.

  15. Dfox1942

    Dybala scores on a sexy free kick while Higuian stopped on a PK!!

    1. Dfox1942

      Dybala with a 2ND GOAL, I hope Sam is watching.

    2. Argentina2018

      Just Dybala’s presence will freak defenders out, that’s why any sane coach with a decent brain would take him to Russia, not to mention his speed and one on one skills. I don’t buy the theory of Higuaín is experienced and needed in the team, fuck this nonsense…..History repeats itself.

  16. Mik

    As of Now its either Mascherano / Biglia who will start as our No 5, I Would prefer Mascherano, His Long passes r great. And He is a Leader a true destroyer and reliable than Biglia, .

    The other 2 Midfield spot (If Sampa goes for 3-3-3-1) is the most fascinating spot, who will it be.

    And if it is 3-4-3 then Who will be the other 1 Midfielder (I some how feels its most probably ENZO who is gonna make the cut)

    ENZO will make it i think even if he is not selected now. BANEGA was a fixed man in the Middle only because of his consistency he is now got back in the pecking order. After these 2 the usual suspects, Lo Celso, Paredes, Lanzini.

    Lamela, Pastore, Augusto are out unless they have to be phenomenal in the upcoming 2 months which i don’t think going to happen.

    And then the Other Local Prodigies, Gago(Dont call him for gods sake, a Beautiful player but he will get injured 99% Sure), Maxi Meza(Dont know how gud he is), Nacho, Belluschi??? I dont think so.

    Our Midfiled is complicated. Forward is almost fixed so as the Goal Keepers & Defence.

  17. kavindrs

    I think from domestic league Maxi Meza,Pablo Perez,Bustos and Pavon should be called.Pablo is more physical and faster than Enzo and Maxi also looks fast in midfield.Otherwise we have Mascherano,Biglia,Banega type of midfielder who are comparatively slow.Sampoli should choose right in midfield.experience+speed

    1. sandy

      True! Pablo Perez should be there because he is physical as well as technical. We dont have any other midfielder who combines both. But I think Lautaro Martinez would also be in! That makes it 5. So it is difficult to say who makes the final cut!

    2. Gonzalo.

      They are already called up. Meza too.

      1. JSaroya

        Gonzalo, can u please give us a more in depth analysis of Meza and how useful can he be to us.

        1. Gonzalo.


          My english is not enough good to describe precisely a player. He is rather tall and has all the abilities to play on highest level. Very fast with great dribbling, and powerfull shoot.

          You should watch some Independiente game to estimate by yourself.

          1. JSaroya

            Lol, ok thanks.

        2. mamoun elpipita

          @ JSaroya

          He’s versatile, physical and defensively disciplined. He plays mostly as an enganche but he played a few matches as a DM and he did remarkably well so I don’t think Sampa would lose anything by calling him up.

          1. JSaroya

            Thanks mate


    Hope bustos tagliafico lo celso lanzini meza perrotti pavon paredes would get decent amount of playing time in two upcoming matches…
    If sampaoli is going to start macherano biglia banega midfield it would be pathetic…
    My 11 vs italy is
    Bustos otamendi funes mori tagliafico
    Paredes lo celso
    Messi lanzini

    1. KidultHood

      This team wouldn’t make it out the group stage at the world cup, and I doubt Messi would even want to be on the football pitch with some of these players. This is like taking a group of players from La Masia and put them in the Barcelona first team then expect Barcelona to go on to win the La Liga title and the UCL. Italy C team would easily win the game if this was to be the lineup. lol

      We already seen multiple new faces on the pitch at once vs Singapore and it took Argentina 25 minutes to open the scoring. And it was Fazio of all people who scored the opening goal. A Brazilian or German D team would have scored 3-4 goals in the first 15 minutes against Singapore. Guys stop kidding yourself. It took Argentina 24 years to get to a world cup final and you guys want to believe average unproven players with no championship experience at either international or club football is going to somehow take the world cup by storm in Russia.

      1. anuparno

        He is saying about friendlies not about the WC friendlies is for experimentation and sampaoli will see which players actually good I believe locelso biglia should not play in midfield mascherano as dm far better and enzo Perez paredes banega should be there so is acuna and salvio not sure about bustos and lanzini this friendlies will prove how good lanzini really is.but u r advocating experience only not form then 2002 Argentina 2002 France 2010 Italy 2014 Spain all struggled with lots of experience its all about form u need some experience but there should be a balance between youth and experience we have experience in messi aguero mascherano otamendi but we need fresh blood in midfield we need 1-2 fresh blood in defence also

      2. Richard

        Exactly Kid, but players with tons of experience and zero or very little match fitness (Romero, Rojo, Funes Mori) are not going to cut it either.

        1. Richard

          On the other hand, Copa 91 and 93 were won with many young and inexperienced players in the team like Batistuta, Simeone, Redondo, Leo Rodriguez, Franco etc.

          1. KidultHood

            Richard that might be true, but the young players today are not as good as the ones from 91 and 93. Compare those names to what we have today. You can’t even compare the names today with players from 2002-2008. While you still have talented young players in Argentina, majority of them are lacking the class and quality to make a difference in a game on the biggest stage of world football.

          2. KidultHood

            Richard: This is my thing, Argentina already have something going for them, and that is making it through the rounds of tournament all the way to the finals. If that aspect of the project is working then why completely shred it up and start all over? People want the coach to dismiss the entire experience roster for inexperience younger players for the sake of having new faces. I don’t see a midfield with Lanzini, Lo Celso and Paredes carrying Argentina to a world cup final let alone winning it. This midfield lineup wouldn’t even win the Olympic Gold medal. Bloggers here have the right to throw out their favorite players, but at the end of the day, I’m a realist.

      3. mamoun elpipita

        No why don’t YOU stop kidding your self when you think that players like Biglia, Banega and Higuain are even gonna get Argentina past the first round let alone the final.
        6 out of the Sabella’s 11 had no WC experience and they helped get Argentina to the final. I would take Paredes over Banega and Icardi/Dybala over Higuain any day of the week and twice on sunday, as for biglia, well simply put he’s not good enough to be in the NT.
        Lanzini is a superb player but it’s his fitness that I’m worried about just like with Kun and Maria.
        You say Argentina’s youngsters aren’t good enough to go to Russia and maybe you’re right but we won’t know for sure unless we give them A TRY IN A MEANINGLESS FRIENDLY. When a younger player is in form for their club for several seasons like Paredes and Lanzini they automatically earn a TRIAL in a FRIENDLY, I don’t think that too unreasonable to ask.

        1. Argentina2018

          Wery well said Mamoun. I’m not sure what coaches are thinking by repeating same attacking roster: Messi-Aguero-Higuaín-Di Maria. Its not working by playing all old folks without adding a spark of the young attackers.

          Di Maria is playing shit with PSG, can’t make a decent pass or retain the ball for a second, Aguero’s Knee injury happens after 30 min on pitch, and Higuaín can’t pass his cognitive blunders with the National Team even if he wins Champions League with Juventus single handedly.

          Banega drinks the night before his crucial match, last game I watched for him, he was walking on the pitch with watery eyes from alcohol. He’s done as a player.

          I’ve been watching the speed of Icardi and Dybala which is spectacular so not including them in the squad will cost us another world cup. Last time we reached the final because of our solid defensive line up alone, this time around, I don’t see us reaching the knock out stage.

          Dybala after coming from injury and with just 40% of his actual form was able to rescue Juventus in the CL.

          Icardi and Dybala must go to Russia and join Messi or we are in trouble big time. All teams are aiming to bring their sharp fit youth to the WC except Argentina accepted to be complacent with same old farts. Another Aguero-Higuain-Di Maria Circus (Round 3)

      4. CHANDRAN MK
      5. CHANDRAN MK

        Biggest joke!…this is exactly looks like how we are aproaching friendlies..then better you select 15 players for the worldcup…!!!!!
        Meanwhile do you think this is my starting eleven vs iceland??? Sooo sad ….

      6. CHANDRAN MK

        I couldnt even understand the theory of picking players for the friendlies and benching all of them.sampaoli has already said that he has 80% squad fixed which surely include romero guzman otamendi fazio mercado biglia mache salvio acuna banega messi dimaria aguero.just play them only vs italy and spain..ok???
        So we can start with
        Mercado macherano otamendi
        Salvio biglia banega acuna
        Messi dimaria
        Hope you are happy now!!!

        1. amit

          I think it has to be 4-3-3.

    2. pallab

      F.mori not even in bench for Everton

    3. Gromoso

      I like you very much…Do you call yourself Argentina fan?
      How do yo expect a team with young new players with no playing time together to perform well. If Funes Mori goes to the world cup that means Sampaoli dont have any respect for the whole nation. That guy is not even on the bench…. you fans are crazy

      1. canadien royal

        Everyone and every fan has the right to say what they want, they have no lesson to receive from someone like you

  19. Richard

    The selection of Funes Mori is an insult to other CB’s. The guy has not even been on the bench for Everton this year (including today).

    1. vimaldass

      Exactly just noticed earlier. Sampaoli should give others a chance instead.

    2. qwerty

      Funes Mori was an absolute MONSTER during copa. Perfect ball playing CB that can win arial duals. so smooth on the ball and quick. perfect for Sampaoli. I just hope he regains form since hes been out for a long time. Id still give the guy a chance.

    3. EnganChe

      Rojo also hasn’t featured for Man U for a while, today he was not even on the bench. As for Funes Mori, I think Sampaoli is infatuated with the idea of the type of centre-back he can be. At the moment though, I would have taken Pezzella and/or Mammana instead.

    4. Gromoso

      Funes Mori and Marcos Rojo haven’t played for almost a season and half. Now the coach is not calling Dybala because its not the ideal moment. WTF? Go back and find out what’s going on with Garay. Otamendi and Garay would be ideal for argentina….

    5. mamoun elpipita

      Mammana, Pezzella and David Ibrahim (Frankfurt) are all solid options and he takes 2 injured players……oh well I hope Sampa knows what he’s doing.

      1. 10XEEM

        man david ibrahim is a tall defender just as needed by us.moreover playing in germany will be very good addition

  20. 10XEEM

    if maxi meza gets the chance and prove banega will lose his place foe sure because maxi meza can play in various position.

    1. fanOFargentina

      Maxi meza should be in wc squad, it will give more options..he is faster and athletic than banega

      1. Sabellista

        And we need athletic players in the middle to give Messi attacking freedom. One attribute of Iniesta that is overlooked is his athleticism and work rate as most people are mesmerized by his footwork with the ball. Xavi at his best always averaged 10-12 kms per match. That’s a lot of legwork. This is not 2006, Riquelme would struggle in today’s game no matter how elegant he was make no mistake.

    2. amit

      If maxi meza is good, hope he clicks in friendlies & gives the much needed midfield stability. Is he a attacking midfielder or a deep lying playmaker? I still maintain banega & higuain shld be in final23. Maynot be guaranteed starters..but in 7 matches ( god willing) , they will add value in some stages. I don’t think lo celso is ready.

      1. 10XEEM

        he is versatile like many of the diciples of arial holan as we know tagliafico.

        1. amit

          Good . Hope meza clicks & brings the much needed athletism & physicality in midfield. I was seeing Sevilla match yesterday & Vasquez was showing a lot of physicality in attacking midfield . Not sure if he is a consistent or like banega.

  21. vimaldass

    Congratulations to messi and rocuzzo for becoming parents for the third time !!

  22. king joe


  23. KidultHood

    I’m not a Tottenham fan, and I think they’re an overrated club with no credential whatsoever. Tottenham without Pochettino would be just another Watford/West Ham. But with that being said, I felt Tottenham did everything right over both legs which on another day would see them progressing to the next round, what undone Tottenham was the history of the UCL and Juventus experience. The keyword here is experience! (I’ll get back to this in a little bit). All Juventus needed to win the tie was like 20 minutes or less over both legs. Higuaín scored in the 2nd and 9th minute of the first leg and since then from the 10 minute to the 90th minute, it was all Spurs. I was even surprise to the degree at which Spurs dominated Juventus in Italy, I mean a 50/50 possession overall game wouldn’t be as bad for Juventus at home, but it was like 33% – 67% possession in favor of Tottenham which goes to show Juventus midfield is not as great as some here try to explain after the second leg. The Second leg in England was just a continuation of Spurs domination of Juventus (domination in terms overall team performance not individuals) from the first leg. The first half of the 2nd leg was all Spurs; Juventus midfield was anonymous just like they were during the last 80 minutes of the first leg in Italy. During the first half, Higuaín was isolated and was left with no service from his midfielders while Dybala barely get any touches on the ball. Douglas Costa was the only Juventus player threatening Tottenham during the first half.

    The beginning of the second half started just as how the first half ended for Juventus, it was continuous Tottenham Spurs domination up until Massimiliano Allegri decided to take out Matuidi for Asamoah and Stephan Lichtsteiner who replaces Medhi Benatia. Alex Sandro was then moved into Juventus front three and gave his usual LB position to Asamoah who added pace on the left side flank. So instead of continuing with the worst formation in the History of football (a three-man backline), Allegri decided to go with a four-man backline with both Asamoah and Lichtsteiner occupying opposite wings, you could see the immediate effect on how Allegri substitution and adjustment change the game on a whim for Juventus. With the wide men of Asamoah and Lichtsteiner on the pitch it gave guys like Pjanic and Khedira (who were mostly struggling during the game) a little more time on the ball because the Tottenham midfielders and defenders were all trying to adjust to Juventus tactical change of a 4-3-3 formation with Alex Sandro playing as one of the three-man frontline alongside Higuaín and Dybala. Higuaín prove again he is no poacher but a complete forward. Higuaín assist pass to Dybala for the second goal was what the Juventus midfield was missing over both legs. This for me is why Higuaín is most helpful for Argentina, not only in the penalty box, but he can drop deep and create assist moves on goal, i.e. Higuaín assist for Messi second goal against Brazil in which he went on to score a hat trick, and there are plenty of other game especially in qualifiers and friendly games where Messi and Higuaín link up play led to goals for Argentina. No striker currently from Argentina can do what Higuaín does with the ball, like holding up play and creating from deep at the same time. Higuaín use to do this a lot at Napoli hence the reason he had so many assist. So what change the game for Juventus was the wide men (Asamoah and Lichtsteiner).

    Now as for everyone here always talking about how Argentina need youth, who changed the game for Juventus against Tottenham? It was two of their most experience players in Asamoah and Lichtsteiner. So no, Allegri didn’t call upon two of his most youthful inexperience players and ask them to go do something they are not accustom to. This doesn’t mean an older/experience player is always suited for this kind of situation. My point is, while football is being played in the present, it still comes with a lot of historical weight, and experience players carries a lot of historical weight on their shoulders. I had the same feeling watching the Real vs PSG game as I did watching Spurs vs Juventus, I just never feel PSG was going to topple Real Madrid because I was viewing the game in live time and in historical terms. Manchester City will face this same reality if they should play any of Barcelona, Bayern, Real Madrid and Juventus over two legs. The only decent team Manchester City play thus far in the UCL was Napoli and they’ve not convince me as a team that can win against any of the remaining top four teams left in the competition.

    People need to quit the ‘’Argentina need this player from that country argument’’ in order to win the world cup. This would be like me saying ‘’if PSG had Iniesta’’ they would win the UCL, football doesn’t work like that. You know how many national teams want to be in Argentina position? Plenty! People here make it seems like teams are just licking their chops in the expectation of facing Argentina. Yes, let’s all pretend the likes of Spain, Germany, France, Brazil etc. are not concern at the prospect of facing Argentina at the world cup. Moreover, lets pretend Argentina is the only national team with issues facing them. Right now, the Argentina national team is in great shape and the players are all healthy, that is the main thing for me and nothing else. Argentina back in 2014 had several unfit players coming off injuries including Messi himself. This time around, I don’t have to worry about Di Maria running himself into the ground for Real Madrid in order to please Florentino Pérez who didn’t give a two cent about Argentina. Playing in France right now before the world cup is good thing for Di Maria Argentina. One thing I can say about Pep Manchester City is that he kept Aguero fresh and injury free and this is a good thing for Argentina going into the world cup. Messi does is usual walk on the pitch when playing for Barcelona which is his way of getting rest.

    I have four request of Sampaoli, please bring back Nicolas Gaitan, Augusto Fernandez (I don’t care if they’re playing in China two to three months before the world cup) they’ve already shown what they can do on the pitch for the blue and white. Also, please bring back Lamela, it will be disappointed if Lamela don’t make the world cup in Russia. And last but not least, please select Joaquin Correa for the world cup because he brings skill, pace, height and unpredictability compare with some Argentina players who only has one way of dribbling pass defenders of the opposing team. This is all I ask for; Lamela, Gaitan, Augusto and J. Correa. The new young players should only be Pavon and Martinez along with J. Correa. Well, I guess fan favorite Tagliafico might make it to Russia depending on his performance against Italy. Please no Lanzini or Paredes. Well, unless Sampaoli drops Biglia for Paredes, I could live with that. Biglia is too lethargic and one dimensional player. Biglia doesn’t have the faint, the pause, the 360 turn, the start and stop, so why is he even play as a midfielder? Wose thing, if his back his turn he doesn’t have the reverse skill to turn in coming players on his back/shoulder. All Biglia does is one touch pass to his closes team mate then jog away behind the opponent player or jog back to his defense line. Sorry, Biglia add nothing to Argentina going forward. Biglia duty as a midfielder is to defend and help in attack, not to solely defend and recover lose balls while being anonymous at everything else on the pitch.

    1. Sabellista

      Good analysis of the Tottenham v Juventus game. I also hope to see players like J. Correa and Augusto go to Russia. I agree the that experienced players are more valuable at tournaments but for me, current club form and how effective is a player for a team cannot be ignored.
      I have to say that relying on experience without considering current form is a disaster waiting to happen. What a player did in the past tournaments cannot guarantee his current spot in the squad. That will is big mistake.
      E.g. Higuain cannot be dropped because of his past misses. Not every match is going to be a final in Russia. At the same time neither he can be picked based on his past good scoring record.

      “Some people would like you to coach the team from memory because it appears this makes them feel more secure,” said Jose Pekerman.

      The other day, when Liverpool hammered West Ham, you slammed his performance and gave us all the reasons why Lanzini shouldn’t be in the NT. Few weeks later, When Real Madrid destroyed Sevilla, you were quick to put it on Montella, even when it was evident that Banega was one of the culprits.
      IMO Lanzini and Paredes can keep up and compete physically with likes of Toni Kroos, Casemiro, Modric, Rakitic or physical Nigerians than Banega.
      Banega is praised here for his passing. But if we review the NT matches or big club matches.

      1.Banega does not create chances or make key passes with his passing skills for the NT.
      2. He hardly wins back possession in fact more often he gives away possession cheaply in dangerous areas.
      3. He always disappears in physical and games against combative midfielders.
      4. Unfortunately, I have never seen Banega combining to effect with Messi in the NT shirt. Everytime he is on the pitch Messi is forced to play deeper. If we were to use the last NT game as an analysis point, Banega was largely responsible for the defeat.

      I respect your analysis but I disagree on that all experienced players must take priority over the in form or effective players.

      1. 10XEEM

        That’s why sampaoli wants to wait for GAGO till last minute.j.correa and centurion will be nice addition ,don’t see any reason to include biglia , banega they don’t offer much . i think pablo perez will make it to the list awesome player……… paredes
        ………..enzo perez{gago} …
        …………………….p.perez……=awesome midfield.

    2. qwerty

      Augusto Fernandez is key to our midfield and we have sorely missed him lately. Lamela is also another id include for workrate, the guy never stops badgering opponents and is his playmaking abilities are excellent. I like Gaitan but he hasn’t done well.

    3. EnganChe

      Injuries have not done A.Fernandez and Lamela any favours, if fit they certainly deserve to be part of the team in my opinion. Unfortunately, not enough time for Sampaoli to test them. Moreover, they don’t appear on his radar at all.

  24. amit

    For weekend la liga match against relagation bound Malaga , Messi still expected to start!! Next week is Chelsea & then comes the friendlies. Can’t Messi be given more rest. Really dread to think of our flight if Messi comes to wc with low batteries

  25. Gonzalo.

    Axel Werner make his debut for Atletico Madrid in European League yesterday.

  26. Rhaelyn
    1. Rhaelyn

      Though I still prefer Pavon instead of him in NT…..2022 worldcup maybe

      1. Gonzalo.

        imo in Argentina league there is few better wingers than Pavon (but Pavon plays for Boca). Pussetto one of them. Also in Europe. J.Correa for example.

        1. Rhaelyn

          I like Pavon because he already proved he can link up with other national team players(2 assists)

  27. kavindrs

    Even after injury Higuain shines.He participated in both goals of Juve.Higuain and Dybla going to be important for NT in WC.Coach is choosing right players.Sampoli should also think about Erik Lamela he is good in high pressing.He knows how to organise a game and make killer passes.He is best suited for Sampoli’s game plan.

Leave a Comment