Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Back To The Drawing Board

Here's the write up on tonight's scoreless draw between Argentina and Chile. What you don't get from the wire reports is the general impression that Argentina stunk it up. Not only did they not play very well, Alfio Basile's home-based side was whistled off the pitch at the end of the game. Not a great start to Argentina's experiment of training with local players to form the base for the Copa America side this summer.

The consensus from Argentina is that the team played poorly because it didn't field an imaginative enough No. 10. Juan Veron was set for the role before getting injured recently, leaving the task to Daniel Montenegro. The Independiente captain just didn't seem up to the task, full of running, but not much else.

According to reports, Montenegro joined teammates Fernando Belluschi, Jose Sosa, Pavone, and Rodrigo Palacio as those described as not being able to raise their game tonight. Cristian Ledesma, a key figure in San Lorenzo's title chase this season, actually took a step backwards. The only players to make any kind of positive impression were River Plate goalie Juan Pablo Carrizo and Boca Juniors defender Hugo Ibarra.

Most of the summaries conclude that while the display was worrying, at least there's time to fix the problems. I imagine that the fixing starts with convincing Juan Roman Riquelme to return to international soccer, as well as the inclusion of some overseas players. I can think of one right off the bat.

Chile hold Argentina to goalless draw [Reuters]
Argentina played badly, couldn't get it done against Chile, and was whistled off (in Spanish) [TyC Sports]
Not plugged in (in Spanish) [Ole]
A poor debut (in Spanish) [La Nacion]
Lionel Messi Scores a Maradona Goal [The Offside]


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