Lionel Messi will participate in his ultimate World Cup this winter, with the Argentine genius trying one final problem at profitable soccer’s greatest prize.
Messi, after all, has come shut earlier than. In 2014 he was named as winner of the match’s Golden Boot after main Argentina to the ultimate. Nevertheless, he missed out on the last word success in Brazil, as La Albiceleste misplaced a nervy ultimate 1-0 to Germany on the Maracana.
As Argentina put together for one more World Cup problem, we keep in mind the staff that misplaced the 2014 ultimate.
Goalkeeper: Sergio Romero
Romero was the hero of the semi-final shootout win over the Netherlands, saving two spot-kicks to e-book Argentina’s place within the ultimate.
The goalkeeper had a disappointing home marketing campaign main as much as the match as second-choice at Monaco, however was named Argentina’s primary and impressed in Brazil. The next summer time he signed for Manchester United and solid a repute as one of many Premier League’s finest quantity two goalkeepers, as he supplied competitors and canopy for David de Gea throughout six seasons at Outdated Trafford.
He retired from worldwide soccer in 2018, having made 96 look for Argentina. No goalkeeper has ever made extra.
Proper-back: Pablo Zabaleta
Pablo Zabaleta was a reliable presence for membership and nation throughout a protracted profession of success. The precise-back’s finest soccer got here at Manchester Metropolis, the place he turned a agency followers’ favorite and received two Premier League titles.
He signed for the Residents from Espanyol in 2008 and made 333 appearances for the membership in all competitions, forming a central a part of the facet that turned challengers for main trophies following their billionaire takeover.
Zabaleta received 58 caps for Argentin, together with within the 2014 World Cup ultimate the place he produced a efficiency of attribute dedication regardless of ending up on the dropping facet.
Centre-back: Martin Demichelis
Martin Demichelis had joined Zabaleta at Manchester Metropolis the earlier summer time and endured a tough debut season in English soccer.
The veteran centre-back had received 4 Bundesliga titles throughout a earlier spell at Bayern Munich, however struggled to adapt to the tempo and calls for of the Premier League. He was an imposing determine throughout Argentina’s World Cup marketing campaign nonetheless, together with his expertise key to 4 clear sheets on the run to the ultimate.
He largely shackled Miroslav Klose throughout a cagey ultimate in Rio de Janeiro.
Centre-back: Ezequiel Garay
One other spectacular performer as Argentina’s run to the ultimate was constructed on a defensive basis. La Albiceleste didn’t conceded a aim in 443 minutes in the course of the knockout levels, earlier than Mario Gotze’s extra-time aim broke Argentine hearts within the ultimate.
Garay had earlier shaped a part of the Argentina staff that received the u-20 World Cup in 2005, that includes alongside 2014 teammates in Pablo Zabaleta, Lucas Biglia, Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero.
At membership stage, Garay represented quite a lot of Spanish sides together with Actual Madrid and Valencia, whereas he received league titles in Portugal and Russia at Benfica and Zenit St Petersburg respectively.
Left-back: Marcos Rojo
Marcos Rojo’s performances caught the attention in Brazil, with Manchester United making a transfer to signal the full-back from Sporting Lisbon on the conclusion of the match.
Rojo scored his first worldwide aim within the group stage with the winner in a 3–2 victory towards Nigeria and was the one Argentina participant named within the World Cup’s All-Star XI, primarily based on the Castrol efficiency index.
He struggled to cement himself as an integral a part of the United set-up throughout seven seasons in English soccer, however received the FA Cup, League Cup and Europa League.
Midfield: Javier Mascherano
Javier Mascherano is considered one of many nice midfielders of his era and was a vital a part of Argentina’s run to the ultimate.
Combative and dedicated as he snapped into challenges on the base of the midfield, Mascherano’s recreation was one constructed on depth and tactical intelligence. He received 147 caps for Argentina, a nationwide document till Lionel Messi surpassed his whole in 2021.
4⃣ #WorldCups representing @Argentina
A legend has hung up his boots – Congratulations on a stellar profession Javier Mascherano pic.twitter.com/G3o5pxL2GI
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) November 16, 2020
At membership stage he represented West Ham, Liverpool and Barcelona after transferring to Europe and loved a adorned profession with the latter. He received 5 league titles, 5 Copa del Rey and two Champions League titles throughout his time on the Camp Nou.
Midfield: Lucas Biglia
An understated a part of the Argentina facet, Biglia slotted into midfield alongside Mascherano with the duty to stifle the opposition.
Biglia started the match out of the facet however began each fixture from the quarter-finals onwards. He additionally featured prominently as Argentina reached the ultimate of the 2015 Copa America, the place La Albiceleste suffered heartbreak once more with a penalty shootout defeat to hosts Chile.
Biglia received 4 league titles in Belgium with Anderlecht, earlier than spells in Serie A at Lazio and AC Milan.
Proper-wing: Enzo Perez
Enzo Perez got here into the facet following an harm to Angel Di Maria within the final eight, beginning each the semi-final and ultimate.
He was unable to copy the creativity of his absent teammate nonetheless, producing an ineffective efficiency within the ultimate earlier than his late substitution for Fernando Gago.
Perez’s finest soccer got here at Benfica and he was named because the Primeira Liga Participant of the Yr after serving to the Portuguese facet to the title in 2013/14. He has additionally received the Copa Libertadores with two golf equipment, first with Estudiantes in 2009 earlier than a second triumph at present membership River Plate in 2018.
Left-wing: Ezequiel Lavezzi
Lavezzi got here to prominence when he shaped a part of an excellent ahead line at Napoli, starring alongside Edinson Cavani and Marek Hamsik in Naples.
After 5 seasons he joined Paris Saint-Germain, the place he received 4 league titles after turning into one of many first marquee additions of the membership’s billionaire backed regime.
Lavezzi was an everyday with Argentina and scored twice because the nationwide facet received the Olympics in 2008. He failed to copy that success with the senior staff nonetheless, dropping within the World Cup ultimate and twice within the Copa America decider.
The winger was a continuing menace towards Germany however was changed at half-time within the ultimate, with Sergio Aguero on as his alternative.
Ahead: Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi was the marquee title in Argentina’s facet and got here agonisingly near profitable a primary main honour with the nationwide staff.
Messi had starred in the course of the group stage with 4 targets, together with a surprising late winner towards Iran. He failed to attain in the course of the knockout rounds, however was an essential a part of Argentina’s run to the ultimate.
Now taking part in: Messi magic – World Cup version #ITVFootball | @FIFAWorldCup pic.twitter.com/YIRXpG5pUF
— ITV Soccer (@itvfootball) November 16, 2022
Regardless of defeat, he was named as winner of the Golden Ball on the finish of the match, however needed to wait till 2021 to style his first success with Argentina. Messi captained Argentina to Copa America success, ending a 28-year look ahead to a significant trophy. It has been an arduous route for the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner, who had suffered 4 earlier ultimate defeats.
He’s now Argentina’s all-time document goalscorer and look maker, having scored 91 targets in 165 caps. He and Argentina are primed for a real problem in Qatar.
Ahead: Gonzalo Higuain
Gonzalo Higuain was chosen at centre-forward forward of Argentina’s embarrassment of riches, with Sergio Aguero and Rodrigo Palacio left on the bench.
Higuain scored prolifically throughout a protracted profession in European soccer, netting 278 targets throughout spells with Actual Madrid, Napoli and Juventus.
He netted 31 targets in 75 video games for Argentina at worldwide stage, however endured a efficiency to overlook within the ultimate. Higuain wasted a wonderful early probability after a mistake from Toni Kroos and noticed a aim disallowed for offside as he didn’t time his run. He was substituted for Palacio after 78 minutes.
Learn – Eight World Cup veterans hoping for achievement in Qatar
Learn Additionally – Remembering the final 5 winners of the World Cup Golden Boot
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The submit Remembering the Argentina XI that misplaced the World Cup ultimate in 2014 first appeared on The Soccer Trustworthy. Supply – thefootballfaithful.com