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Deflated Argentina Must Rebuild Without Lionel Messi for World Cup Qualifiers

Published: June 28, 2016

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After the painful interlude of the Copa America Centenario, the long slog to the Russia World Cup resumes for Argentina. But the team that takes up the qualifying mantle may look rather different to the line-up that fell just short in New Jersey days ago.  There is little time for the Albiceleste to lick their wounds following Sunday’s penalty shoot-out defeat to Chile. Nor do Gerardo Martino’s... 

I Quit: Lionel Messi’s Retirement Turns Argentina Copa Dream into Nightmare

Published: June 27, 2016

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Lionel Messi pushed himself to the limits of his physical and mental endurance to deliver the Copa America for Argentina. But, ultimately, even his incomparable skills were not enough in the MetLife Arena, New Jersey, as Chile claimed the title on penalties. After such optimism, the nation finished the competition in a crisis that may take years to mend.  While the captain’s bombshell decision... 

Lionel Messi’s Penalty Disaster Sums Up an Argentina That Wilted Under Pressure

Published: June 27, 2016

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Argentina’s Copa America hopes went flying out of MetLife Stadium at roughly the same height and velocity as Lionel Messi‘s skied penalty. The Albiceleste have once more choked in a major final, and the Barcelona legend must wonder if he will ever take the title he craves so badly in international colours.  As Francisco Silva tucked home the winning kick to seal the centenary... 

Argentina’s 3rd Time Lucky? Nothing but Victory Will Do in the Copa America

Published: June 25, 2016

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For the third time in as many years, Argentina will be lining up on Sunday for a major international final. But this time only a victory will suffice for the Albiceleste: Failure to lift the Copa America Centenario against Chile could only be interpreted as a catastrophe.  To paraphrase the great Oscar Wilde, to lose one final may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose both looks like... 

The Lionel Messi Show: On-Fire Argentina Down USMNT to Make Copa America Final

Published: June 22, 2016

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Just when you think Lionel Messi cannot possibly get any better, he goes straight out and proves otherwise. The Argentina star put in yet another display of the highest quality to down the United States 4-0 and send the Albiceleste strolling into the Copa America Centenario final.  The hundredth edition of the world’s longest-running international competition lends itself to a history lesson... 

Houston, We Have a Problem: Magical Leo Messi Sends Warning to the USMNT

Published: June 19, 2016

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With four wins out of four, Argentina are in imperious form going into the decisive stages of the Copa America Centenario. And the United States men’s national team should pay close attention, as the Albiceleste and their talisman, Lionel Messi, keep getting better. Venezuela were the latest victims for Gerardo Martino’s men. The Vinotinto put up a spirited fight and even bested their illustrious... 

Brazil and Uruguay Have Fallen Away: Now Copa America Is Argentina’s to Lose

Published: June 17, 2016

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Even in their wildest dreams, Argentina could not have imagined their path to the Copa America would be cleared so obligingly by their rivals. Three of the South American continent’s top outfits have fallen by the wayside after the first round, and anything but victory in 2016 would be a massive underachievement.  It began with Uruguay. The 2011 winners were tipped to turn a few heads in... 

Matias Kranevitter Passes Argentina Audition to Prove He Is Mascherano’s Heir

Published: June 15, 2016

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More fearsome opponents than Bolivia will undoubtedly come in Matias Kranevitter‘s budding career, but in an imperious performance on Tuesday the 23-year-old showed just why he is considered as the natural successor to Javier Mascherano in the Argentina engine room.  It is rare at international level—with all its variables and potential for unpredictability—to see a team dominate... 

Lionel Messi, Ever Banega and the Rosario Fighters That Fuel Argentina

Published: June 13, 2016

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Argentina have the luxury of knowing that whatever the result in their final Copa America 2016 group game, they are guaranteed passage to the quarter-finals, and most likely in first place. And their road to the last eight in the United States, once again, has been fired by the contributions of one city in particular.  Rosario, in the province of Santa Fe some 180 miles from Buenos Aires, is a... 

Ramiro Funes Mori: From Kamikaze to Cornerstone of the Argentina Defence

Published: June 12, 2016

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Argentina have not exactly been firing on all cylinders so far in the Copa America, but there have been few scares in what has traditionally been the team’s Achilles’ heel. The defence has stood up to all the tournament has thrown at it so far, and Ramiro Funes Mori has been a big factor in its stability.  The Everton defender has enjoyed a meteoric rise through the football ranks... 

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