Argentina and Qatar to meet in crunch battle for a last eight berth

Jushna Shahin

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Preview of Argentina vs Qatar match

On the eve of his 32nd birthday on 24th of June, will Lionel Andre Messi, be only a name that Argentinian history will forget ?

Tonight in Porto Alegre, Argentina will face the Asian Champions, Qatar, in their third and final group stage match, in jests and jeers adorned by the world.

It is the Albiceleste’s transit over another group stage elimination on an international match. And that would result in more humiliations as only four teams would exit out of 12 in the tournament. And the double World Cup Champions would go to oblivion.

Argentina lost to Chile in last two tournament finals. Photo: Twitter

But, another resurrection, like the one against Nigeria in last year’s FIFA World Cup, will turn around the fortunes of Messi and company and it would be the least thing their fans expect.

With Brazil beating Peru (5-0) and Venezuela beating Bolivia (3-1), on Saturday, Venezuela landed next to Brazil ensuring quarterfinals and Peru await with 4 points.

Argentina with a crippled history of perfect coaches in its past few years must walk down the Porto Alegre Stadium, mustering up courage to win against the Asians, strong and challenging enough, Qatar.

A victory is a must in order to survive in the tournament. And winning alone won’t suffice. The positive result should couple with ample luck.

Their best probability would be by beating Qatar while Colombia winning against Paraguay, to place Messi and team on the runners-up berth with four points in the group. If they win against Qatar and yet Paraguay beats Colombia, the wait is untill Ecuador defeat Japan and march out hand in hand.

All just mere calculations and possibilities. Worth a great match with Colombia was destroyed with hindering confusions and a phenomenal safe landing was a penalty that Messi scored and a penalty that Armani stopped. Probabilities can count, but if Argentina themselves would make them capable of a comeback is the big question that looms large at the moment.

This is Qatar’s maiden Copa America tournament. Photo: Twitter

With almost all the best coaches coming from Argentina, yet the Albiceleste lack one in each of its very crucial tournaments. Lionel Scaloni, started as a caretaker manager in August 2018, after Sampaoli left became the manager in November 2018. With little experience and different line ups, Argentina suffer due to the experiments in international matches under various coaches.

Argentina, the back-to-back runners-up in 2015 and 2016 Copa America and FIFA World Cup in 2014 need a better tactic and a solid game plan in order to beat the Asian Champions. According to Argentine media, Tyc Sports, Paula Dybala might start against Qatar. And the Juventus forward can be placed either as a second striker or as a winger.

With so much lacking yet with much potential when Argentina faces Qatar tonight in Porto Alegre, another decisive match determining Albiceleste’s luck would kickoff at the same time in Fonte Nova Arena between Colombia and Paraguay.