Hard To Say We Would Have Beaten Nigeria With Messi On The Pitch – Argentina Coach

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Jorge Sampaoli the coach of the Argentina national team has played down suggestions that his team would have beaten Nigeria if they had Barcelona star Lionel Messi playing during their 2-4 loss in yesterday’s friendly.

Messi returned back to Barcelona after Argentina 1-0 win over Russia in a friendly game decided on Saturday, hence missed the 2-4 loss to Nigeria, a game which Argentina threw a two goal lead.

Speaking after the game Sampaoli refused suggestions that if Messi had played they would have won, insisting that the players he had on the pitch should have done better.

” We (Argentina) have to move away from being a one man team. Maybe the scoreline would have been different with Messi on the pitch, but it’s hard to say because we had enough quality in the team to win any game”, Sampaoli said.

” Nigeria were way better in the second half, they never stopped running and that made it hard for us to find any sort of rhythm going forward which they took advantage of to win. They did well to win”.

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Michael James