Lionel Messi and Argentina have been the main topic of trolls in recent times. The FIFA World Cup 2022 has produced some major upsets already. While some fans are loving what they see, others are certainly not. Well, it is all part and parcel of the game and we love our sport.
What happened in the game between Argentina and Saudi Arabia in the World Cup 2022 was nothing short of a miracle. It is a long-standing reminder of the universal fact that this beautiful game is the ultimate equalizer. And last afternoon gave us a stark reminder of that fact. Saudi Arabia shocked the footballing world by beating the much-fancied Argentina, taking the 3 valuable points, and in the process ending the 36-game unbeaten run of the South American giants.
Goals from Al Sheheri and Salem Al Dawsari cancelled Lionel Messi’s early penalty, giving them this famous win. While Saudi Arabia were outstanding and clinical on the day, there were certain areas on part of the Argentines which led to their loss.
We look at the three reasons why Argentina lost this game-
1. Starting Otamendi over Martinez
Over the course of this long unbeaten run, manager Lionel Scaloni has chosen familiarity over quality with the intention of not fixing something that is broken. While Otamendi has been a very reliable defender during this period, against Saudi Arabia he looked like he was an accident waiting to happen.
Against a quick, direct and physical Saudi side, the centre-back was just not able to impose himself the way he normally does. This begs the question that whether Lisandro Martinez was the man for this game. The diminutive centre-back would have been the perfect option against this side. His tough-tacking tenacity and line breaking passes being a big advantage when the Argentines were on the attack.
2. Forward players fail to shine
With a forward line of Lautaro Martinez, Angel Di Maria, and Lionel Messi, one would expect them to score at will. And apart from one maddening spell where they put the ball in the net thrice which were disallowed, The Argentines barely produced anything else of note.
The likes of Di Maria and Messi barely managed to produce anything of note, wilting in the face of a resolute Saudi backline which did not give them an inch. They lacked any impetus and sometimes bordered on being clueless, which was evident of the fact that they were giving the ball to Messi on every occasion, a move that failed to work this time around.
3. Poor timing of runs
There was a sequence of events where the Argentines had the ball in the back of the net. Not just once, but thrice. But each time the goal was disallowed due to offside. While the Saudis holding a very high back line was a manouvre that was fraught with risk, but surely this Argentina attack is too talented and too intelligent enough to time their runs better.
But that did not happen. They tried different ways to counter the high line. The use of decoy runners or swarming 6 players at a time, failed too. Maybe things would have been different had the Argentines had the basic game sense to time their runs properly.
FIFA World Cup 2022: The Messi Troll That Went Viral
After all was said and done, Argentina suffered a massive defeat. To add insult an injury, one fan and a famous YouTuber just went a little overboard. He goes by the Twitter handle AJ Shabeel. He is a look-a-like of a Saudi player (Yasser Alshahrani, the centre back who got injured).
Below is the Tweet sent out by him that went viral!!
Well, at the end of the day, the Internet is a crazy place. Fans have a right to do and talk as they place (as long as they are in their limits). The FIFA World Cup 2022 will surely have plenty of upsets to talk about. Let’s wait and watch!!