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2014 World Cup Nation Profile: Argentina

2014 World Cup Nation Profile Argentina

Photo Courtesy of Openclipart.org

The 2014 World Cup is approaching fast as we are less than 40 days until the first kickoff. We will be previewing each participating country over the next two weeks in order to give you a little background on how that nation qualified for the World Cup as well as some key players to keep an eye on as the tournament progresses. We continue our coverage with Argentina.

2014 World Cup Nation Profile

Confederation: CONMEBOL
Manager: Alejandro Sabella
2014 FIFA World Cup Group: F
FIFA World Rank: 6 (as of April 2014)
Qualifying Record (W-D-L): 9-5-2
All-Time FIFA World Cup Record (W-D-L): 37-13-20

Impact Players

1. Javier MascheranoBarcelona (La Liga) — Argentina will probably not be tested until the knockout round but it will be important for Mascherano to take control of the midfield from the beginning of the tournament. The defensive organization for Argentina will need to be tip-top by the time they reach the quarterfinals and beyond.

2. Lionel MessiBarcelona (La Liga)  and 3. Sergio AgueroManchester City (English Premier League) — Argentina will likely play with three forwards in their formation. Messi is a good enough talent that he can get out of double and triple teams but he is also smart enough to know when to find the open man. When those numbers collapse on Messi then it will be Aguero who will likely be the beneficiary. As long as he puts the ball in the back of the net, then there will be no problem.

Group Stage Schedule

June 15: vs. Bosnia and HerzegovinaEstádio do Maracanã (Rio de Janeiro), 6:00 p.m. EDT
June 21: vs. Iran, Estádio Mineirão (Belo Horizonte), 12:00 p.m. EDT
June 25: vs. NigeriaEstádio Beira-Rio (Porto Alegre), 12:00 p.m. EDT

Prediction

Argentina will win the group with nine points. The only team that I could see giving Argentina some trouble would be Bosnia and Herzegovina in the opening match but I think that Argentina is just too strong for Bosnia to take. What awaits them is a potential match-up in the Round of 16 with possible either France or Switzerland. It will be interesting to see how Alejandro Sabella approaches the last game with Nigeria having only three days rest from the previous match with Iran.

Check back in with Stoppage Time Soccer for all of your 2014 World Cup news and notes from training camps all the way through the Final.

Matthew Evans is a soccer writer for Stoppage Time Soccer. “Like” him on Facebook, Follow him on Twitter, or add him to your network on Google

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