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Another problem for Argentina



Because there is never a bad thirty-fourth.

Argentina is going through difficult times as a result of a lot of mistakes throughout history. Many have taken invoice at this moment. In fact, there are so many that the situation has become critical. And even Venezuela is capable of beating them now.

At least that’s what we saw at Wanda Metropolitano.

Venezuela played a good game; possibly one of the best with – a controversial and politicized – Dudamel in charge. But Argentina’s problems were more.

In other words, the result says more about the Argentinian problems than the Venezuelan successes.

Football, politics and other dramas

Scaloni, Scaloni… What happened now?

First, the tactical stoppage. The call led to think of seeing a triangle appearing in the middle of the field. Venezuela seemed like a good opponent to prove this. The good moments of Paredes, Lo Celso and company, too.

Well, no. Scaloni came out with three central defenders, two lanes and a double pivot with the above mentioned.

After Salomón Rondón’s first goal, he quickly changed. And from then on, the Albiceleste team was disorganised.

There was never a clear role for Paredes. Lo Celso-Messi never looked for this partnership.

Venezuela, for their part, betting on withdrawal and direct play found spaces everywhere. It’s that I even found them, the Argentinian disorder gave them away.

Even so, the performance of his wings, Murillo and Machís, was remarkable.

Messi did not shine. At the end of the match, he was disqualified from the summons due to injury. Weird, yes. And Lautaro Martinez did very well.

In this the match was summarized, as the majority of encounters between selections. More individual performances than collective presentations.

This time was no exception.

However, the news wouldn’t be there. It’s hard to talk about football and Venezuelan coach Rafael Dudamel put the continuity of his position in the hands of the Venezuelan Football Federation.

Reasons? Politics Yes, football and politics have never been separate worlds. It is stupid to believe and ask the opposite.

In short, it was a tragicomedy. It all depends on which perspective you look at it.

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France win their second match on FWWC



The team of France traveled to Nice to face their most difficult match on this group stage. Norway, that won their first match against Nigeria, faced the hosts with a lot of determination. As both sides got 3 points on the first round, a victory meant a very close qualification for the round of 16. And that was what the two of them were searching for.

French’s coach Corinne Diacre made one single chance for the first XI against South Korea. She put Montpellier’s striker Valérie Gauvin on the match. And she was important on the match. During the first half, she got the best chances inside the box but was unable to convert from close range. The best opportunity for Norway came with a header from Ingrid Syrstad Engen, which flew over the crossbar. The first 45 minutes ended with no goals, but the last ones were pretty exciting.

As soon as the match restarted, after the half time, France scored. Gauvin fired the ball into the back of the net from the edge of the box. There was no chance for Norway’s keeper Ingrid Hjelmseth.

However, the home side didn’t have much time to celebrate. Less them 10 minutes after, a low ball was drilled across the box and Wendie Renard tried to pass the ball out. The problem is that she turned the ball into the back of her own net. There was no pressure at all on her. It was just a totally bizarre own goal by the center-back. And the fans even had to deal with Isabell Herlovsen telling them to be quiet.

Things were difficult to France and they certainly didn’t want to lose points in front of their supporters. Fortunately, for them, Eugénie Le Sommer was there to save them. After the referee checked a play inside the box, France was awarded a penalty. The number 9 stepped up, took the ball and sent it to the back of the net. 2-1 to France and another 3 points.

Les Bleus’ next match will be against Nigeria, who still have chances of going onto the next round. Even already being basically on the round of 16, the home team wants to keep 100%. Norway will have great chances of qualifying, once they will play against the weakest on this group, South Korea. It’s clear that the Asians are not playing well, but they may surprise. So the Gresshoppene will have to play their best to guarantee a place in the next round.

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Germany beat Spain and are qualified for the round of 16



Germany and Spain were facing each other for the first time in the Women’s World Cup. On their last meeting, a friendly match in November 2018, they draw with no goals. But this would have to be different. Both teams won their first match: Spain on a comeback against South Africa and Germany on a late goal against China. A victory in this match would mean classification for the winning side.

Spain was fantastic throughout most of the first half, controlling the midfield and creating more opportunities. Their best chance was with Nahikari García, on a one-on-one chance against German’s keeper Almuth Schult at the 14th minute. However, the forward failed to finish and the score stayed equal. Germany started growing on the match after that but were still worse than Spain. However, in football, not always being the best means winning, and that happened. At the 42nd minute, Sara Däbritz beat defender Marta Torrejón to get the rebound and finish into the bottom left corner. 1-0 to Germany and a little bit of tranquility to them on the second half.

The Spanish continued being the best side on the second half, but they were far from clinical on the attack. On their first match, two of the three goals they scored were from a penalty. With that, we question if they really have a good ability to score from open play. Germany, on the other hand, were far from their best. It was clear that they were missing the creativity of Dzsenifer Marozsán. The number 10 of Lyon suffered a broken toe on the match against China and will probably be out of Group Stage.

With another small victory, Germany is confirmed on the round of 16. It will give time for their best player to recover and maybe play again on this World Cup. Already qualified, they will face South Africa in Montpellier next Monday, trying to be 100% and also a clean sheet on the group stage. Spain, on the other hand, will have a difficult match against China. The Asians won their second match and are also with 3 points. The one who gets the victory in Le Havre will be qualified for the round of 16.

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Brasil golea en el debut



Brasil arrancó la Copa América goleando ante Bolivia, pero con mucho por mejorar en su juego.

El debut de los dirigidos por Tite, más allá de un 3-0 en el marcador, evidenció muchas cosas que, entre buenas y malas, se irán confirmando (o desmintiendo) a lo largo del desarrollo de la competición. Es imposible analizar con solo un partido; sí es posible comentar lo visto.

El encuentro pudiese explicarse en varios escenarios. Vamos con ello:

El repliegue boliviano

Los dirigidos por Eduardo Villegas protagonizaron un muy buen primer tiempo. Bolivia, sujeta a todas sus limitaciones tácticas (¡y jugando ante Brasil!), protagonizó unos primeros 45’ correctos.

No obstante, todo fue a costa de un despliegue físico de primer nivel, criterio que no todos tienen. Brasil probablemente haya tenido más movilidad y kilómetros recorridos sobre el campo, pero es el correr sin balón aquello que cansa; agota.

Esta es la principal razón para explicar por qué fue un 0-0 al descanso. Eso y, claro, la ausencia de Neymar, su creatividad y desparpajo.

Richarlison y Neres, los extremos

Los extremos fueron distintos, muy distintos. Y es que sus características tienen poca relación entre sí. Sin embargo, es el jugador de los Toffees quien encuentra, a partir de su juego, mayor incidencia en el equipo.

Neres se siente más cómodo por el centro. Pero en la selección, el planteamiento pide todo lo contrario.

A uno le fue mejor que al otro, claro está. Probablemente siga siendo así, y la etiqueta de “sustituto de Neymar” se pruebe con otro jugador.

Éverton, por ejemplo, además de convertir el tercer gol, hizo méritos para alguna titularidad. Veremos.

El doble pivote “Casemiro-Fernandinho”

Tite propuso un trivote en la mitad del campo. La realidad, en cambio, estuvo lejos de aquello.

Entre un Coutinho (de dos goles) más ofensivo y un Fernandinho que evidentemente no juega entre líneas, Casemiro acaba encontrándose sin opciones de pase vertical, más que lo que Richarlison presentaba abierto por banda.

Digamos que fue un doble pivote forzado, no imaginado y poco productivo.

La primera opción para ver un trivote más funcional y escalonado sería Arthur. Allan tampoco sería mala idea. Ambos por encima de Paquetá, jugador de carácter más ofensivo.

Brasil goleó, pero deja muchos detalles a mejorar… Lo que es bueno, incluso. Perú y Venezuela puede que sufran los cambios.

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