In practice behind closed doors this Thursday at the Doha University complex, the coach of the Argentine National Team, lionel scaloniwill define the variants that he will make in the team that will face Mexico on Saturday from 4:00 p.m. in a decisive match for the qualification to the round of 16 of group C of the World Cup in Qatar. As the coaching staff reported, at least three changes in the defense and one or two in the midfield are being evaluated.
The two wingers who played against Saudi Arabia will initially be removed. they will leave Nahuel Molina Y Nicolas Tagliafico and they will enter Gonzalo Montiel Y Marcos Acunawhile Lisandro Martinez would enter as the second central marker to run to Nicholas Otamendi as first instead of Christian Romero. In the middle, Enzo Fernandez could go for Leandro Paredes either Alejandro “Papu” Gomez with the proviso that if finally Paredes is replaced, Alexis MacAllister He would enter through the steering wheel of Sevilla of Spain.
In this way, the probable team against the Mexicans would go with Emiliano “Dibu” Martinez; Montiel, Otamendi, Lisandro Martinez, Acuña; De Paul, Paredes or Enzo Fernández, Mac Allister or Fernández or “Papu” Gómez; Di Maria, Messi and Lautaro Martinez.
In the 15 minutes open to the press this Wednesday, Scaloni was alone on one side with a ball at his feet and walked several meters from one side to the other with a grim and thoughtful gesture while his collaborators Pablo Aimar, Walter Samuel and Roberto Ayala accompanied to the physical trainer Luis Martín, who led the first movements. For the first time since he arrived in Qatar, the selected player trained in the morning under strong sun and a temperature close to 30 degrees. The president of the AFA, Claudio “Chiqui” Tapia, collaborated with the players by putting protective cream on their bodies to mitigate the effects of the sun.
Those players who had no activity before the players took part in the work. saudis and those who played few minutes. The rest, led by Lionel Messi, trained in the afternoon in Qatar -at noon in Argentina- doing regenerative work in a practice that was extremely light and recovery. From the proximity of Messi He remarked that he has no problems with his right ankle and that only ended with logical fatigue for the 90 minutes of play, but without any specific ailment that puts his participation against the Mexicans in doubt.
After Tuesday’s defeat, Messi took the lead in the locker room at the Lusail Stadium. there was a long group chat of almost an hour of the players with each other with the purpose of concentrating statements behind a single voice, back to back, with the captain’s speech as a guide and a clear and unmistakable message: to work and to turn the page trusting that nothing is lost. There were also informal talks between the players after dinner at the camp.
In this sense, the Dibu Martínez pointed out that “Messi always gives encouragement, that “he is a leader and he is going to push it forward”. In addition, the man from Mar del Plata stressed: “Defeat hurts a lot but if we want to become world champions we have to continue. We have two finals ahead of us and it is better to lose now than later.”
Scaloni, for his part, also emphasized for these hours the emotional aspect of the group so that the concern and long faces due to the unexpected defeat against Saudi Arabia are put aside and the match with Mexico is focused with the best possible energy. In this sense, This Wednesday, after lunch, the players were able to reunite with their families after almost two weeks.
The squad will train again this Thursday behind closed doors and on Friday from 9:30 in Argentina, Scaloni will give a press conference and then lead the last open training session before the game with Mexico on Saturday at 4:00 p.m. at the Lusail stadium.