Friday, April 16, 2010

Diego says he's got 20 of the 23 squad members

As we get closer and closer to our World Cup debut against Nigeria on June 12, Diego MARADONA continues to hint at some names and formations.

On Friday, he spoke again with Radio Metro 95.1 FM and confirmed a few names whilst he made a couple of not-so-surprising announcements ahead of the deadline (May 10) for him to submit a list of 30 players that will later (June 1) be reduced to the final 23-name World Cup squad.

"I will play with four central defenders at the back because those are the guys who gave me enough insurance. We haven't conceded goals (1-0 at Uruguay and 1-0 at Germany) and they didn't even created us scoring chances. I have tried with wing-backs like ZANETTI and PAPA, but I ended up using four central defenders. I'm going to take some alternatives in both defensive wings. ANGELERI or Clemente RODRIGUEZ...I'll see" said MARADONA.

He then confirmed he will use a 4-4-2 system and the lineup he hinted will take the field against Nigeria will be the same that played against Germany. That means Jonas GUTIERREZ, Javier MASCHERANO, Juan Sebastián VERON and Angel DI MARIA will be the midfielders.

"Jonas has always played great for me. I have spoken very clearly to him: even if he was to be relegated again with Newcastle United, he was going to come to the World Cup with me", said MARADONA about GUTIERREZ.

Regarding Angel DI MARIA, Diego said: "I don't know why they gave him a 4-match suspension for that red against Bolivia. We lost him almost for half of the qualifiers".

According to reports published by Olé, Diego already has the 30 names in his head and 20 of the 23 he will take to South Africa.

Starting with the goalkeepers: Sergio ROMERO will be his first choice (he will also be the first to start working at the AFA headquarters in Ezeiza as the Dutch League will be over before all the others where Argentine players are competing. ROMERO will be free from his duties with AZ Alkmaar after the next weekend). Mariano ANDUJAR (Catania) will be his sub and the third keeper will be Diego POZO (Colón de Santa Fé). The name of Adrián GABBARINI (Independiente) was mentioned as this young goalkeeper became the new sensation in the Clausura Tournament in Argentina, but it seems Diego will decided in favour of POZO.

The defenders that have a ticket more than confirmed are: Nicolás OTAMENDI, Martín DEMICHELIS, Walter SAMUEL, Gabriel HEINZE (all of them should be the starters to face Nigeria and continue to be so if things go well). Together with them, Nicolás BURDISSO and Clemente RODRIGUEZ should be in the list. Diego suggested he will wait to see if Marcos ANGELERI (right back, Estudiantes de La Plata) recovers his form after a serious injury that kept him out for a long time and it seems that only if he fails to make it, Javier ZANETTI would be given a chance.

Luciano Fabián MONZON (Boca Juniors) also have chances, though they are a little slim.

Gabriel MILITO, suggested through the press by Lionel MESSI and recently recovered from injury to play a key part in a few FC Barcelona matches, didn't convince Diego with his performance at the Super Clásico against Real Madrid and should miss out too.

It appears MARADONA thinks it would be unfair to the other players who fought during the Qualifiers while MILITO was injured. Which begs the question: "Then what the hell is Walter SAMUEL doing there and why on Earth will you wait for ANGELERI? Right?". That reasoning is more than weak and very hard to understand.

When it comes to the midfielders, the mentioned GUTIERREZ-MASCHERANO-VERON-DI MARIA and the rest has a big question mark all over it.

GAGO was not ruled out (here's another question from me: Gabriel MILITO had a very solid game against Real Madrid while GAGO was all over the place making foul after foul after foul and providing Real Madrid with nothing and yet MILITO appears to be out of the picture while GAGO could still find a place in the list?).

Mario BOLATTI is starting to play less and less for Fiorentina and he is hurting his chances to make it to the World Cup.

Javier PASTORE, on the other hand, has improved a lot for Palermo and look set to be considered ahead of Pablo AIMAR as a potential play-maker if the team needs it.

Esteban CAMBIASSO will surely have to watch the World Cup on television and we will all be left missing out on one of the best left-side all-round midfielders we've got. But Diego doesn't like Cuchu, even though MOURINHO will play him every single minute of every single game.

José SOSA? MARADONA said the Estudiantes de La Plata midfielder still have chances and if you ask me, he is a very good option to have on board. He can play on the right or the left hand side of our midfield. Can help in defensive tasks and can join in the attack very efficiently and is deadly on set-pieces. Plus...he plays everyday with Juan Sebastián VERON and he's got the experience of having played in Europe (Bayern Munich). It seems to be like SOSA is ahead of Maxi RODRIGUEZ. But...would there be room for any of them?

Up front?

Three guys already confirmed: Lionel MESSI, Gonzalo HIGUAIN and Carlos TEVEZ. Another one with one foot in despite not having a season to write home about: Sergio AGÜERO. Then..there are a few names fighting for 2 more spots.

Even though MARADONA mentioned Diego MILITO's name as one of those he wants to come to the people's mind when remembering South Africa 2010 in the future, the inclusion of Inter's top-scorer this season is not written in stone.

Martín PALERMO was '80% confirmed in my World Cup squad' after the joke friendly against Jamaica and now it seems those numbers could be decreasing. Though I wouldn't bet against him making the squad as long as Diego is our manager.

There are rumours of MARADONA following Lisandro LOPEZ lately. Lets remember Licha was 'deleted' from Diego's team just before the double-header against Brazil and Paraguay because, reportedly, MARADONA didn't like the expression (out of frustration) on Licha's face after being constantly ignored when Diego picked the starting XI and the subs. I hope this rumours are true and that's why I wish Lisandro can have a couple of cracking performances against Bayern in the Champions League semifinals. His ticket to the World Cup could depend on that.

Ezequiel LAVEZZI still have some chances as he is one of the options MARADONA sees to have someone attacking from the flanks. In that regard, it doesn't seem probable that both Diego MILITO and Martín PALERMO can make the list because Pipita HIGUAIN is also there as a main striker and taking three would be too much.

To recap this information and clarify it a little bit...let's see what we've got.

CONFIRMED:

1. Sergio ROMERO
2. Nicolás OTAMENDI
3. Martín DEMICHELIS
4. Walter SAMUEL
5. Gabriel HEINZE
6. Jonas GUTIERREZ
7. Javier MASCHERANO
8. Juan Sebastián VERON
9. Angel DI MARIA
10. Lionel MESSI
11. Gonzalo HIGUAIN
-------the names above are not only confirmed but they look set to be our starting XI---------
12. Mariano ANDUJAR
13. Diego POZO
14. Nicolás BURDISSO
15. Clemente RODRIGUEZ
16. Carlos TEVEZ
17. Sergio AGÜERO
------even though MARADONA said he's got 20, I can only count till 17 pencilled players-----
18. Marcos ANGELERI
19. Javier PASTORE
20. Fernando GAGO
------would those three be the ones I'm missing to make it 20?-------------------------------
21. Martín PALERMO/Diego MILITO
22. Ezequiel LAVEZZI
23. Mario BOLATTI
-------one from PALERMO/MILITO and the other two could complete the WC squad--------
24. Diego MILITO/Martín PALERMO
25. Luciano MONZON
26. Javier ZANETTI
27. José SOSA
28. Maxi RODRIGUEZ
29. Lisandro LOPEZ
---------though I have my doubts about Lisandro LOPEZ, he could be included in the list of 30 if Diego decides to forgive and forget what happened----------------
30. Gabriel MILITO
---------I think we shouldn't rule him out. He could be in the list of 30 and he could have a chance to impress Diego in the upcoming La Liga and Champions League decisive matches-----

It's too late now and I got fired up with this subject so I've been writing for a long time. Here's hoping I didn't miss obvious names above. If so, I'm sure you'll pick them up and let me know so we can work together on these lists.

Let me get my thoughts together and when I have some time, I'll give you what would be my 30 names and my probable 23-man squad. In the meantime, you can start that exercise yourselves.

44 comments:

Anonymous said...

Your leaving out a big name, BANEGA! we need him in our squad hes the best center midfilder we have, would be a HUGE dissapointment if he doesnt get caled up

Anonymous said...

I agree with your 17:
1. Sergio ROMERO
2. Nicolás OTAMENDI
3. Martín DEMICHELIS
4. Walter SAMUEL
5. Gabriel HEINZE
6. Jonas GUTIERREZ
7. Javier MASCHERANO
8. Juan Sebastián VERON
9. Angel DI MARIA
10. Lionel MESSI
11. Gonzalo HIGUAIN
-------the names above are not only confirmed but they look set to be our starting XI---------
12. Mariano ANDUJAR
13. Diego POZO
14. Nicolás BURDISSO
15. Clemente RODRIGUEZ
16. Carlos TEVEZ
17. Sergio AGÜERO

However the 18-20 are:
18. Javier PASTORE
19. ?
20. ?

I don't think Angeleri and Gago are 2 of them. If Angeleri is selected, we already have 7 defenders, that means we need no more defender.
Gago has recently been starting for Madrid, but I think it's still between him and Bolatti for the Mascherano n Veron back up.

So according to the players forms and Maradona's preferred choices, my 19-30 (19-23 have the most chances) are:
19. Diego Milito
20. Martin Palermo
21. Marcos Angeleri
22. Fernando Gago
23. Mario Bolatti (must be a midfielder since we have only 6)
24. Pablo Aimar
25. Fabian Monzon
26. Rolando Schiavi
27. Ezequiel Lavezzi
28. Jesus Datolo
29. Maxi Rodriguez
30. Ever Banega

This make sense! 7 DF, 7 MF, 6 forwards, and 3 goalie. The 24-30 consist of: 2 DF, 4 MF, and 1 forward.

The likes of Maxi Lopez, Lisandro Lopez, Coloccini, Gaby Milito, or Zanetti could make a surprise inclusion.

Principee

kastanas1 said...

banega aimar should be in. how unlucky can zanetti be? best all around player argentinian for 10 years now and is always left out from the squad.unbelievable.

batigol9 said...

i think Diego Milito will make it but the Idea of Veron instead of Cambiasso in the starting line up is simply CRAZY.Veron couldn't deliver in his prime in 2002 and left the NT for 3-4 years.How with the hell is he gonna improve his perforamnce after 8 years???.He is way way past his prime.

Anonymous said...

i advice u guys not 2 rule out riquelme just yet,(i know u might think is impossiable)

i was in barcelona last month i had an argentine friend he told me that,there is a rumer when diego was in barcelona quardiola,strongly recomended 2 diego to bring back roman to la seleccion.

and the folowing week diego was at the classico in la bobmanera.(for the first time since they fallen out)he praised roman after the match.

may be there is a possiability. u never know wid diego.

Anonymous said...

If you predictions are true Seba I am not that upset with the players going.

Good news- PASTORE,ANGELERI(Depending on Pupi). PALERMO not a lock(just yet),Licha is not out of the running(again based on rumors)

Bad News- No Banega,Cambiasso,Milito (a question mark)and his brother Gaby likely a no go.Gago still has a chance which makes me sick(because even though he was a Boca playerI despise Gago at RM and the way he plays, he plays like he has been crying for years and can cause us a red card ala Ortega) But any word on Banega?

To be honest I could live with this. Back line looks good. Samuel and Micho had a good partnership, and for those who say it's too defensive, it will get us wins. This beautiful football is a thing of the past and does not win you much, ask our team in 06, ask Brasil of 06,98,82, ask the Dutch of 74(or the Dutch in general). Old school football that won us a title in 78,86 and reached the final in 90. I think Veron will do really well, and a game or two Pastore can come in and play well, I just hope he is up for it. He seems to get a bit nervous for the bigger games.

Jack!

johnny said...

The bad news is that this confirms the defense first mentality that we have seen since the squeaker over Uruguay. How are we going to better utilize Messi with this strategy ? The answer-we are not. With all the attacking talent Argentina possesses the strategy is four center backs and a counter attack offense that has shown absolutely no indications of being effective.

I do like the idea of Jose Sosa. He has been impressive with Estudiantes, and in my mind a better option than Maxi or Lucho.

messidona19 said...

I just cannot believe that The Milito brothers might not make the world cup squad. Not mentioning the name of Banega also dissapoints me. So Diego's happy with the squad that BARELY won Germany and Uruguay by one lucky goal? He thinks we're gonna get lucky for 7 straight matches and win them all 1-0? Well he's wrong... Poor Messi will have a tougher task coming in this world cup as the team is not built around him, but is in fact built around defensive play.
I don't know why can't Maradona get it in his thick head that Otamendi is not national team material! If Jonas is played as a right back, This will free up a position in the midfield which can provide creativity and a good partnership with Messi on the right. That's where Banega or Aimar should be.
Overall, I excpected this team to be chosen but I was really dissapointed that despite Gaby's World Class performances since his return, he still doesn't get considered!
3 names I wanted to see in the World cup (Diego and Gaby Milito, and Banega). Plus No Zanetti and No Cambiasso is also sad.

Anonymous said...

anonymous is right, beautiful football will fail at the wc. put all romantic feelings away, just fight, defend, destroy and wait for mistakes of the opponent. the line up against was good and i don't think Argentina is able to play much better at the moment.

Vitalij

GK said...

Like everyone else I am very upset that we will not be seeing Cambiasso, Zanetti, G. Milito, Banega etc. at the World Cup. The list of 20 players are not the best we have to choose from in Argentina but at the same time it is a bit of a relief. Do you guys remember the line ups we had to deal with for qualifiers? I will take this squad and hope for the best.

Biggest surprise for me was seeing Pozo on the list. I know he will be the 3rd keeper and won't see any field time but I still see it as a surprise. I can't remember which match he started in (I think it was the Catalunya friendly?) but I do remember him being very weak and lost.

Another disappointment was no mention of Garay. If Diego is going to use 4 centre backs then I would rather see Garay on the list rather than Otamendi. Ultimatley, I would prefer Jonas used as a RB but I don't think that is going to happen.

Finally, I agree that it seems like Diego is throwing 'beautiful football' out the door. Is it because that beautiful football has failed us in the past and he prefers more defending and the counter attack or is it simply because he doesn't want Messi to play better than he did? Either way I really don't care anymore, I just want to win the matches we play.

Mohd said...

only a stupid coach reveals his starting 11 before the WC!!

but only a retarted coach plays with four center backs and with such slow and non-creative midfield!

LM10ARG said...

It's official, we will see a disgraceful defensive-minded counter-attacking Argentina in wc. Bravo diego bravo, u have destroyed our beautiful football. After seeing this kind of squad, I will not be sad at all if Argentina gets humiliated in this wc. That's the only way we can have a chance of getting rid of diego and at least win the copa america in 2011.

LM10ARG said...

Argentina will play anti-football in wc, completely isolating Messi...And anti-football DOESN'T deserve to succeed.

King Aguero said...

I think this will be the final list

Romero
Andujar
Pozo

Otamendi
Demi
Samuel
Heinze
Burdisso
Clemente
Angeleri

Mascherano
Veron
Banega
Jonas
Sosa
Di Maria
Pastore

Messi
Tevez
Aguero
Higuain
Millito
Lavezzi

pablo.d said...

please no veron nooooooooooo
i dont understand when their are so many better players like ben,past,camb,aimar to partnet mach in the middle.
we wont win the wc with veron ,his time is very over.

Anonymous said...

Nicolás OTAMENDI OUT BARDISSO IN

I HAVE NO COMPLAINT WITH 4 CBS AT THE BACK BUT BARDISSO IS A PROVEN FB/CB HYBRIP AND HE PLAYED RIGHT BACK AT WC 2006 UNDER PECKERMAN

Nicolás OTAMENDI IS A MINDLESS LUMP

bardisso is a inteligent player and european level

my solid 4-4-2

bardissio-dem-milito-henze
janus---mas---veron--dimaria
----------messi-------------
----------------hig/tevez----------

i have no issue with veron he is still a world class passer and in his older years a more solid lump more likely to tackle and fight

i think pastore and benaga should be understudy's

veron doesn't need to do the running he has the worlds best anchor man as his partner officially the best passer and tackler in the premiership stats

mascorano is a great player a veron by his side linking play will work but he needs cover gago and benaga would be perfect pastore can also fill janus wide position

Nicolás OTAMENDI i have no idea why


bardisso and janus and zanetti and zabaleta are all better

solid counter attacking football with some periods of ball possession

dimaria higuain and messi on the counter attack pace/skill/ability
they need time to blend and a good group stage

maradona frst ever manager to win cup with out conseeding a single goal


please let this be so and hig and messi scoring there way to gold and silve4r boots BRING IT ON

Anonymous said...

veron beat xavi in the player ratings at the club world cup veron was second only to messi


messi gold, veron silver, xavi gold

and didn't bardisso play right back in 2006 and has played in multiple defense positions at both inter milan and roma both top level italian sides

if its henze wide left as a cb,fb hybrip then why not bardisso the other side defectively a right sided henze,i think gago is going to be verons cover

Anonymous said...

I dont know where to start. The thing that bugs me the most is maradonas eagerness to reveal our starting line up. That said i disagree with some of you regarding the back four. I dont think four cb is such a bad idea. But i also would prefere Burdisso or Zanetti instead of otamendi. But Maradona got a point they did play exceptionally well against the germans.

Maradona also said that "It’s not nice to leave someone out who has helped us to get where we are," That brings to mind to specifik players, Palermo and Bolatti for the goals against Peru and Uruguay.

I agree with the seb about the players that we could expect in the world cup.

I believe the 30 players in mind will be:

Romero - TO GO
Andujar - TO GO
Pozo

Demi - TO GO
Samuel - TO GO
Heinze - TO GO
Burdisso - TO GO
Otamendi - TO GO
Zanetti -
Angeleri
Clemente
Milito
Schiavi -

Aimar
Di Maria - TO GO
Veron - TO GO
Pastore -
Macherano - TO GO
Bolatti
Guttierez - TO GO
Sosa - TO GO
Gago -
Maxi

Teves - TO GO
Higuain - TO GO
Milito -
Messi - TO GO
Lavessi -
Palermo
Aguero - TO GO

i would hope that he takes these players

Romero
Andujar
Pozo

Demi
Samuel
Milito
Zanetti
Heinze
Burdisso
Shiav

i

Macherano
Di maria
Veron
Pastore
Banega
Cambiasso
Maxi
Gutierezz

Teves
Messi
Higuain
Milito
Lavessi

pablo.d said...

we have struggled for so long (w.c quailfres and friendlies)and the engine roon is veron, why do people suddenly think he is the key for us when we have struggled with veron in the team.
when he is starting he A:runs out of puff and b:fails to provide the killer passes to link up the front men.
please inform me of the games he won it for us and their were 18 w.c qual and some friendlies.
sadly he is past it for us and with so much other talent available veron is not needed to start.

LM10ARG said...

It is also very clear that diego doesn't want Messi to surpass him. At least as long as it is in his hands. So he is cleverly making sure by isolating Messi and making him unhappy and frustrated at the NT. Clearly, the only shot Argentina has of winning a major trophy in 2011 copa america. However, before that, it has to be made sure that diego gets fired after potential wc disaster which is 95% likely to happen.

Raj said...

Maradona has proved yet again how immature and unfocused he is. If he is thinking that the result against Germany and Uruguay is going to be the basis of his team selection and tactical formation, it just shows his lack of intelligence that is much needed for footballing coach these days. Many of you have been talking about how beautiful football never gets trophies. That might be partially true but if you look at the last 5 winners of world cup, effective football mixed with a bit of excellent right/left backs and solid midfielders have proved to be the difference. I have been following Argentina football for last 25 years and the reason why we always fail is not because of other teams, it is just because of the internal issues that have been killing Argentine football from the association, to coaches to the player groups.

To be honest the worst goal keeper that has played for Argentina for me is Pozo. We won the damn match against Germany because of a goal keeping error. That match was an example of how we shouldn't play football. Maradona for sure will bring about the downfall of Messi's international career. Just look at the options we have for holding the ball:

Otamendi: He might have some potential but he is not even class as a centre back leave alone a right back

Heinze: Well past his prime. But to be honest every time he has the ball my heart rate just shoots up

Guttirez: Just cant hold the ball or play smart passes. Just runs around with no great skill. Maradona will basically need him to cover Otamendi. Basically he and Otamendi combined will be equal to one player

DiMichellis: He had a great game against Uruguay but watching him play for Bayern regularly looks very very insecure. After his injury in the Germany game he seems to be lost.

Veron: The biggest disappointment for me since he started playing for Argentina. Really had high hopes on him when he was playing for Lazio. Never ever delivered even at his peak. Am sure he will be the laughing stock of this world cup

DiMaria: I would have him as a sub and will never start with him. He has great potential except his vision for the game needs to be tuned. Time and again he goes on this great runs, but it all ends with either a bad cross or really poor finish. He still doesnt have the maturity to play the passing game

For me the rest of the choices are the best we have in their respective positions:Messi, Mascherano, Romero, Higuain and Samuel

I can clearly see Messi being stranded in the middle of the field with no one passing. The so called knowledgeable argentine press will tear him apart telling he doesnt have passion and the retarded Maradona will get the severance package at the end of world cup. Maradona will come out and tell that the team did not have the passion to win.

Messi can never do a Maradona because the standard of the teams these days is way better than the 80's, defenders are strong and athletic and every coach out there other than the Argentine and French teams have the best feel and sense for the game.

Going to be a sad world cup. But the good part is there is absolutely no expectations from the damn retard who really made me love the game.

pablo.d said...

raj
a good post and i do agree with 90%of what you say,

Anonymous said...

Fir the person that is saying Diego does not want Messi to pass him I just have to say you are beyond delusional if you really believe Diego is trying to sabotage Messi just because in your eyes he does not want to pass him, you just are a loon if you want to believe that. Nobody and I repeat nobody wants to win a WC more then Diego, you get that straight.When Messi came onto the pitch for the first time in 2006 vs Serbia and Montenegro nobody cheered louder then Diego. He is Messi's biggest supporter, and you REALLY REALLY need to stop being on Messi's jock because this is a team effort not a single act. Nobody will touch Diego and his talent, nobody, even if Messi win's a WC he is NOWHERE and I say NOWHERE near Diego. You are not a Argentino nor a fan of Argenino Juniors,Boca,Napoli to have seen what Diego did in his day. Your statement saying "it is very clear" clear for whom? you and your Barcelona antics, which the only reason you root for them is Messi. What you do not understand is that has been with Barca for a long time and has been a part of that system, see's his teammates day in and day out. He still magic with the team time to time, even with the limited time he has spent knowing them. Look at him vs France, ripped them apart and scored a great goal. Remember something and remember it good, don't ever talk shit about Diego and his love for the team and country, he loves all the players that he calls and wants Messi and the team to do their best, us Argentinos are like that(you're not a argentino and you do not get the grasps of it).

Anonymous said...

Im gonna list my 30 and then my 23, ill put the players that diego said were for sure and then ill fill in the rest with my opinoins.

Ones with * are for sure going


My 30:
1)*Romero
2)*Andujar
3)*Pozo


4)*Demichellis
5)*Samuel
6)*Otamendi
7)*Heinze
8)Burdisso/G.Milito
9)Zanetti
10)Ansaldi/Clemente

11)*Mascherano
12)*Veron
13)*Di Maria
14)*Gutierrez
15)Banega
16)Pastore
17)Lucho/Sosa

18)*Messi
19)*Higuain
20)*Tevez
21)*Aguero
22)Milito
23)Lisandro

Diego's predicted starting lineup

-------------Romero----------------
-Otamendi-Samuel-Demi-Heinze-------
--------Mascherano--Veron----------
--Gutierrez-----------Di Maria-----
--------Messi----Higuain-----------

My preffered lineup

-------------Romero----------------
--Zanetti--G.Milito--Samuel-Ansaldi
--------Mascherano--Banega---------
-----Messi---------------Di Maria--
------Tevez-------Higuain----------

Anonymous said...

Sorry for the triple post, it was not going thru.

Anonymous said...

Raj-

Argentina could of easily won the game vs the Germans 3-0, Di Maria hit the posts and there was another play that could put another goal, I can not think of it right now and we out played them. You are saying it is going to be a sad WC, what WC hasn't been sad since after 86? We have had heart-break after heart-break. 02 was the year we went in as favorites with a system that could not fail, what happens? Yeah exactly. 98 people still play the would of should could of with Redondo not playing. 06, Pekeerman made crucial mistakes, 94 Diego was banned, the list goes and and on. We need to win which we will.

What some of you forget is that we always peak at the group stage(since 94, exclude 02) then always falter.

94-Trash Greece 4-0(everybody is singing and dancing back home and calling us champs)

Beat Nigeria-2-1
Lose to Bulgaria 2-0, but make it out of the group in 3rd place(back then FIFA had rules)

Diego gets banned for the game vs Romania and we lose.

98, started slow beating Japan 1-0.
2nd Game, Destroy Jamaica 5-0
3rd game-Beat the third place team 1-0

Round of 16-Struggle vs the English and we were up a man for over 80 min and could do much and we win on PK's.

QF- Lose to the Dutch, which still bugs me till this day. Batigol's strike almost sent us to the semis. Again we were up a man for 30+min till Ortega lost his cool got ejected and we lose to a wonder goal by the Dutch.

06-

Struggle vs Ivory Coast but we win 2-1

Destroy Serbia&Montenegro- 6-0(People dancing and singing once again say we are champs)

Holland-0-0, we rest our players and get a draw.

Mexico- A game we should of easily win, we play our worse football of the tourney here. Mexico goes up, gives us a own goal(it was given to Crespo, but Berogtti headed it in). Mexico always looks dangerous but Sorin feeds Maxi a wonderful pass and we shoots it off the volley, game set match.

Germany- Better team, scored first, Pato gets hurt we have to give up a sub. Klose should of been sent off, but scores the goal. We lose in PK's.

Raj you also stated something about the last 5 champions.

06-Italy's path to the WC title. I will exclude their first round games.

Australia,Ukraine,Germany,France.

While we got Mexico,Germany in the Round of 16 and QF's.

02- Brasil-Belgium,England,Turkey,Germany.
Granted England did beat us, but they played the Turks in the Semi's, THE TURKS! Not to forget this WC was more then strange. France,Argentina,Portugal all left early. Spain,Italy lost in strange way's to the Koreans.

98-France-

Paraguay,Italy,Croatia,Brasil got them the title. Italy was a team that was aging at the time, and almost won but they lost on PK's. Croatia, a team which we beat had a (as they say in the US) a Cinderella run. They beat Brasil in the final which is still up to debate on if the players were paid off, and lets not forget, that Ronaldo was not a 100% for that game.

You maybe asking what is my point in this... I will answer it for you... Not only do you need the proper team, you also need a ton of luck on your side. The team you play,if you win or lose on PK's, does the ball bounce your way... You do not just win based on talent,formations or etc... A strong portion of it is also based on luck..

Do you know what our root maybe if we want a title this time around. I will simulate that we win the group, and simulate where everybody else will land.


Argentina wins their group... Plays runner up from Group A...

Simulate Mexico-- We get the Mexicans again..

QF match up(will play the winner of group D vs runner up vs group C).. Germany vs USA(lets say)..

Germany again in the QF--- Sounds familiar?

We progress from there into the semis which sets us up vs the Spain.

Win that, we get Brasil.

So will THIS path be easy? Nope, but it depends on how everything goes. I am just picking front-runners and etc...

We can not just base everything on formations and players..Even teams with the best teams and best formations lose.

ninan said...

Palermo & Veron in, D.Milito & Banega out! oh dear! oh dear! God save Argentina!!!

Anonymous said...

stop putting the worlds best player on the wing those days are gone including at his club HE PLAYS FREE RIOLL SECOND STRIKER LIKE TEVEZ LIKE AGUERO

HIS SIMPLY THE BEST IN THE WORLD AT IT

WINGER MY BROWN EYE MESSI IS A WINGER

THE VERY REASON MESSIS GOALS AND ASISTS INCREASED MASSIVLY OVER THE PAST TWO SEASONS


IS HIS NEW 360 DEGREES POSITION I.E FREE ROLL IN THE MIDDLE


PUTTING HIM ON A 4 MAN MIDFIELD WING IS TOTALLY POINTLESS

HE CAN GO THERE IN HIS FREE ROLL ANYWAY

COMMON FLAMING SENSE

YOU LACK TACTICAL KNOW HOW SORRY TO OFFEND BUT TRUE

Raj said...

If world cup was all about luck then why is it that the big names always win it.Yes luck is 25%, but 75% of it is based on the quality of players and strategy.

In 2006 Italy had one of the solid defenses with Canavaro and Materazzi and excellent wingers gattuso and grosso. Also Pirlo and Camronesi were playing well with Totti in front of them

In 2002 Brazil had Cafu and Carlos as wingers with Lucio and Roque Junior as centre backs. They had Ronaldinho and Rivaldo in the midfield with Ronaldo as striker

In 1998
FRance had a great team Deschamps,Thuram, Bartez,Zidane,Petit

There is tactics and team selection that contribute atleast 75% to a team winning world cup.

In 2006 we had a great team but we just depended on Riquelme for makingt creative plays. When he had an off game like the one he had against Germany we dint have an alternative plan. That is what strategy and tactics is all about.

In 2002 though everybody called us favorites Ayala got injured and then there was the famous Veron episode and the team infighting. Also look at Bielsa he had the two best strikers in Batistuta and Crespo and he dint play them together. But if you really dig deep we depended on Veron and not Aimar who was actually playing way better than Veron.

In 1998 Passeralla was the dictator. For me Redendo was amongst the best midfielders. Players like Simeone, Almeyda and Veron ( Never has he done well for National team) never could provide that extra bit which was being creative or scoring. Simeone and Veron had plenty of chances but they never provided that extra spark that is essential for a team to progress

In 1994 the classic Maradona case

The list just goes on. For me the following are the basic qualities needed in a team to win a world cup:

1. A strong defense that has played together and understands each other
2. Creative midfielders with the ability to score
3. Wingers that can be good in counter attack
4. A smart and intelligent coach
5. One player that stands out and carries the team. But for that we need atleast some level of competency in the first 4 points

If all of the above is there then 25% luck will surely play a factor. When you just have point no 5 at the moment it just will not take you anywhere

Nobody questions Maradona's passion or capability as a player. But beyond that there is nothing in him. I am a die hard Maradona fan, as a player he was beyond compare. Messi is at 75% of his level, he might get there. But in his era Maradona will always be the best. There is no point in comparing players across time periods as there is a vast change in the game itself right from rules, to technology, to players exposure to the players ability.
Messi will surely be the best in his era.

I will always be a die hard Argentina supporter even if Palermo, Pozo, Veron, Otamendi plays. But as you grow older the reality bites and expectations come down. The hope that was there in the previous world cups is not there now. We have the best player in the world, but look at the quality around him. If you watch the qualification matches closely look at how many times was the ball played back to Messi when he went on a run, how many assists were created by the midfield, how many goals were scored by the midfielders. How many defenders were used, how many combination were used and finally how many formations were used.

Are these not good enough reasons for a team to under perform. The irony is we have some of the best players in the world but again who decides the team, the coach. Am sure a team like

Romero
Zabaleta-Samuel-Milito-Angeleri
Mascherano -Banega
Aimar(Pastore)
Messi-Higuain-Tevez

Can surely compare to the best in the world. If we have such a team then I can think of the 25% luck factor. But neither we have a team nor a good strategist at helm.

Hope miracle happens!!

johnny said...

I hear you Raj !!

LM10ARG said...

To Anonymous, who bashed me...with utmost respect to Argentines, because of Argentines like u, diego will get away with everything and Messi will be bashed over and over again. I have been Argentina fan ever since I started watching football while I have been in Barca fan in only last couple of years. Before that, I never even followed club football that closely. So don't u dare call me a just a Barcelonista. People like u should be ashamed of themselves coz u guyz wrote Messi's names like Me$$i after he scored against estudiantes branding him as a .....u know what. Diego was God as a player but he is worse than a piece of $hit as a coach. I am saying it again, worse than a piece of $hit. After he fails at wc, u guyz can go bash Messi again and save diego's a$$. Diego is Argentina's worst enemy at the moment and those who support diego can't be true Argentines or true Argentina fans. That said, I will still hope for the best even though I am 99.99% sure that the wc is gonna be a DISASTER.

Anonymous said...

From day one I wanted Diego out because he was not a coach, and I am not letting Diego get away with nothing as a coach.I will not just pinpoint Messi if the team falters, I will blame the team, it is a team effort. Messi is not the be all and say all for this team to win a title, see Ronaldinho for Brasil in 06? Had great season with Barca then failed at the World Cup.

Another statement you wrote about "guyz like you' wrote mess's name on the wall", those were estudiantes fans and a bulk of the country does not support estudiantes.

If you believe this is going to be a 99.99% disaster then DON'T WATCH, if you have that mindset then buzz off, don't come here when the team wins the title celebrate.

I can care less how poor the team is, I am going into every game, every tournament with the mind set of that we are going to win it.

And this statement-

"Diego is Argentina's worst enemy at the moment and those who support diego can't be true Argentines"

Again you are a lunatic, you really are. I support the team from the top to the bottom NO MATTER how poor the team has done. Whenever Diego is gone, then I will that was the right choice for him to leave, but you make a statement such as "if you root for diego, you are not a true argentine" wtf is that about? Do you hear yourself? Really, do you? Do you think before you write? I support the shirt and whatever that comes with it!, maybe you should do the same!

Anonymous said...

Raj,

you seem to have an answer for anything. in your opinion if a team is a little bit superior than another in every aspect, then it should always be able to realize this advantage and win. but then football would be mathematics, and nobody would watch it.

the anonymous guy who complained about the hard draw Argentina got many times is right. not so much the group must be easy, but more important you need 2 easy opponents in the ko-round (like Argentina 1986, Brazil 1994 and 2002, France 1998 and Italy 2006). of course, then the luck with the refs and also some luck in the penalty shootout.

there are always at two or even three teams or more teams who are nearly equally strong, and the luckiest one wins.

Vitalij from Germany

Anonymous said...

No reason to argue about the 17-23rd players selected. These guys wont make a difference as they will not get on the field barring injury.
Forwards
We are about 7 deep with Messi, Higuain, and Tevez 3 of the best 6 in the world. No worry here.

Midfield
Mascherano is a good stopper. DiMaria is exceptional. Our problem here is Veron is NOT creative. He is a stopper. Pastore or Aimar need to make the team and get playing time for our forwards to flourish. That way you have 4-5 offensive choices (Pastore/Aimar, Messi, Higuain, DiMaria). The rest can play defense. Pastore or Aimar on the field and we will win the world cup. I prefer Pastore because he is taller and creates matchup problems. Just watch his games in Palermo and he has made Miccoli look like a star.

Defense/Goalies.
I know there are alot of Heinze haters here. I am not a fan but think he will step up. In the last world cup we have not lost due to goals, but due to penalties. Last two games we had no goals scored on us.

Bottom line, without a good creative midfielder we are really playing 9 against 11 because the forwards get no service. I say give Veron one half of one game. If he doesn't step up he can sit his ass on the bench and let Pastore run the midfield.

One last point. Unless you are a young player in Argentina, I don't care how good you play in our local leagues. Our league is constantly looked at by scouts from all over the world. If they were at a world class level the Euro leagues would have scooped them up seeing how broke our local teams are. Comments welcome.

johnny said...

I couldn't agree more about Veron, but we are beating a very dead horse at this point. My biggest fear is that Maradona will take neither Banega, Aimar or Pastore. We will be stuck with Veron and Bolatti, no creative linkage up front, and you know the name of that tune.

mkanyingi said...

You guys scare me.

I don't know why Maradona is so fond of Veron.

Cambiasso, Aimar, Pastore and Banega need to be on the team and so should Zanetti and both Militos.

leo said...

no cambiasso, zanetti, or milito? regular starters for the best team in italian futbol! i would definitely take out Veron, we have so much better midfielders. overall i agree that we need a bit more attack minded midfielders to support our fantastic forwards, messi and higuain. so banega and aimar should definitely be included. i like jonas and dimaria on the wings

LM10ARG said...

Anonymous, I don't know how on earth u can even try to justify maradona. The first key to success is to choose the best possible squad. The squad diego is going to choose is probably not even 50% of our potential. Now let's come to coaching brain, diego's coaching brain is 1% to none. So as I said before, I am saying it again. Those who have faith in diego got no clue about footballing tactics except for blind fans who only praise him for 1986. I also praised him, no any more. Coz he is the barrior between Argentina's success and failure. Yes I know that pekerman, basile or bielsa didn't deliver glory either. But what they did was that they at least tried to choose the best possible squad except for may be one or two blunders. (zanetti as an example). But diego can't even do that. I CAN CONFIDENTLY SAY THAT WITH THE PLAYERS ARGENTINA HAVE, EVEN I CAN LEAD ARGENTINA TO GLORY AS A COACH WITH MINIMUM AMOUNT OF LUCK WHICH U ABSOLUTELY NEED TO WIN A WC. However, even luck won't be enough to save diego a$$. He feels proud about the 1-0 wins against uruguay and germany??? Well too bad coz it can only go on for a couple of games. After that, u r bound to conceed and may be u won't even get the single goal. Even if u do, there is every possibility u r gonna get knocked out in extra time or penalties. The bottom line is, diego is playing with the passion of Argentina fans. This mustn't have happened. This must have been ended after the 6-1, if not then at least after the defeat against brazil or after we secured qualification. Diego's anti-football is not the answer to success. He will be brutally exposed against a good attacking team like spain or netherlands. It is an absolute shame if Argentina has to play anti-football. Only small teams do that when they play big teams. Is Argentina a small team??? I demand answer from diego's fans.

Anonymous said...

I wrote the comment about not fighting about 17-23. Maradona is a poor manager. Everyone knows this, but Grondona put him in place. Grondona is the real problem because he placed Maradona in this role for publicity and promotion. That said, players play and coaches coach. We have poor coaching, but we are not a small team. As I said before, people should be upset about Veron starting. I think we are saying the same thing. We need a creative midfielder to play next to Mascherano. That would be Pastore/Aimar. (see how Aimar opened up the midfield in his first assist to Higuain against Uruguay) When he left the game everything changed.
All this said, about 50% of the world cup is luck. Fernando Torres and Cesc Fabregas are out so I personally dont think Spain is a front runner anymore. Italy will knock them out in the elimination rounds if they meet in the quarterfinals. Defensive football does win, just ask Dunga or Italy and their 4 championships. I hate Maradona just as much as the next guy, because he puts his own show above our country. Even if you listen to his comments about his discussion with Messi after the Germany game he said himself that "my time has passed". Only somebody selfish would make comments like this. He was a great player, but that is the past. I hope by the grace of God someone can talk sense into him and he somehow lets Pastore or Aimar or Banega on the field.

Joe said...

I really think you are being to harsh on Diego. He has been a poor coach but not an awful coach. You are giving him to much stick. Even thou we had an awful qualifications campain it does not really matter as long as we make it to the world cup.

We always come first in the qualefiers and act like its a certain that we will prevail. I like it that we are underdogs that other teams and we underestimate Diego. Because maybe just maybe and i hope to God he surprises us all.

One must take into consideration that Diego has had a couple of great results and a couple of awful ones aswell.

But Diego has "masterminded" great victorys against France, Russia (away, with Hiddink as coach), Germany (away), Uruguay (away). And althoug we lost against Spain we gave them a good fight.

Whatever you say you can not take out the two last games against Germany and Uruguay. They were defensivly very solid and we won. We even had moments of great football, especially against germany.

Diego always said just give me time and the team will flourish. He will have almost 40 days of practice with the team before the first game.

On the Veron aspect, i think if we play a counterattacking game he will be great with his long range passing abillity out to the flanks. It will also set a good balance as veron is also good defensivly.

In conclusion if you are going to be harsh on diego when we loose, then you got to complement him when we win. I say it again maybe just maybe Diego will surprise us all and guide us to glory. At least thats what i hope.

Anonymous said...

Are you people still wait for miracles that Maradona will sacked only month before WC? Are you crazy?? Let's face it. He's gonna coach NT in SA. Unless, Maradona hit by cars di Buenos Aires or someone shoot him with a gun, or sudenly Maradona got a heart attack, or cancer. Like it or not, we need to support Diego coz he's the coach. It's useless to criticise his track record, capabality etc. Nobody gonna listen! If you still Argentina fans, just hope Maradona will do the best and make surprise. If you don't believe in Maradona, why don't you leave this room. Your're not Argentina fans. How hars you criticise Diego, nobody gonna hear you. Maradona don't care. He doesn't know you at all..

Anonymous said...

hi everybody,

nowadays having full backs who can attack and overlap with winger so as to allow wingers to make diagonal run and open up defense and play one-two with CF or to shoot on goal. with zanetti on the right hand side or ansaldi on the left , di maria and leo can cut inside and provoke havoc in opposition defense. i can't understand why don diego seems to not need a formidable weapon that good full backs can represent and in zanetti and ansaldi argentina do have that weapon. the strange things with four CB is that even the most hermetic defensive tactical setting does not use four CB. if mr diego needs to use 4-4-2 then get messi and di maria on the flank use tevez as the 9.5 and use mascherano to protect the back four and banega or the old veron as deep lying playmaker.. why always el buffone wants to do something which is beyond normal rational?. if he wants to have 4-4-2 which can provide defensive security then use a diamond with leo in the hole behind two strikers (tevez and higuain ), and have leo and tevez shifting position, get banega mascherano and veron in midfield or banega/cuchu, mascherano and zanetti/maxi. use gutierez/angeleri as right back.

there are just plenty of options for argentina, if i am to choose amongst the various tactical option, i will go for a 4-3-3 with leo,pipita and di maria upfront and mascherano, banega and veron(el buffone can't do without him) veron or banega to play a la xavi. gutierez/zanetti as rb. we can combine good football and strong defense.

Alex Camacho said...

The 5 not even included in the top 28 that are most disappointing to me (in order of disappointment):

1. Esteban Cambiasso (take out Bolatti or Gago)
2. Garay (take out Otamendi)
3. Gabi Milito (take out Heinze)
4. Pablo Aimar (I'd take out Veron)
5. Lucho Gonzalez (take out Sosa)

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