Thursday, July 05, 2007

Argentina 1-0 Paraguay: MASCHERADONA!

COCO has a calculator.

He had to solve a difficult ecuation: "I have to rest my key players and, at the same time, I need to beat Paraguay so I can avoid Mexico and an 800km-trip".

Here's the logic he followed:

- 8 starters
+ 1 Carlitos
+ 1 Aimar
+ 90 minutes of rest for those 8 starters

And to borrow an idea from a famous Adidas ad, in the last few minutes, it ended up being


So COCO past the exam with a perfect score and he'll be proud to show the results of the test to his mother!

All in all, a very solid display from Argentina. A side that never looked pressured by Paraguay. The ball possession is slowly starting to become a great asset for this Albiceleste.

There is always a team-mate to give the ball to. There is always someone to help out when you are chasing a rival and want to win the ball back.

The first half showed a Paraguayan side very happy to play for the draw. Very determined in defense. They were up to counter-attack at every chance they had. But not much else.

AIMAR had the better chance for Argentina in the first half when it went very close to head a ball sent from the right by Lucho GONZALEZ.

Argentina was unlucky not to find a goal early in the second half, with TEVEZ and PALACIO both hitting the woodwork.

For 68 minutes, the game stayed the same. Argentina not having that inspiration they needed to break the Albirroja defense. But in that moment, COCO called two guys that were sitting on the bench and asked them to change the game.

So the did!

Lionel MESSI showed a lot of the tricks from his book. He quickly became a nightmare for Paraguay and was impossible for them to stop him.

MASCHERANO was brought in to give support to the attacking men and he did his job. But he wasn't quite happy with that.

So when Lionel MESSI broke through on the left, past two men, cutted in and sent the ball to the box, MASCHE got close to the box. Saw a defenders clearing the ball and was first to it. He first thought about passing the ball to a team-mate. After all, he was called up to defend, to give the ball to others...but then...the rebel in him took control of the situation.

His right foot's tip pointed towards the corner flag, as the inside of his shoe met a ball that had only one destination: the back of the net.


My mind was fooled! I thought: "What a goal by AIMAR!" But then the cammera showed MASCHE's face as he was as happy as he's never been!

Argentina won Group C and became the only team with perfect record after three games in this Copa America.


Well, Javier simply became MASCHERADONA for one night!