Published: Sun, June 17, 2018
Sport | By Gary Shelton

In Iceland, packing salt to face Messi at World Cup

In Iceland, packing salt to face Messi at World Cup

It would prove costly as Iceland - the smallest nation ever to compete at a World Cup - held on to frustrate Argentina in their Group D opener.

The Chelsea goalkeeper wasn't the only offender, however, as Marcos Rojo and Nicolas Tagliafico on the left side of the defence looked decidedly shaky.

Sampaoli is confident his troubled side will prove themselves and downplayed "genius" Lionel Messi's threats to quit global football.

The 30-year-old Messi often edges Ronaldo in the debate about who is the best player in the world, with both men vying for supremacy on the same stage in Spain's La Liga. "We were very slow on the ball", Sampaoli said.

But before the Argentina match, we finally get to see a much anticipated and incredibly talented France team go into battle against Australia.

Star forward and captain Messi is desperate to lift the trophy and has hinted he will quit if the campaign in Russian Federation ends in failure.

Robbie Williams kicks off World Cup with obscene gesture
British campaigner Peter Tatchell was briefly detained by police for staging a one-man gay rights protest on Red Square. He said: "Results like this don't happen very often in World Cups and we need to recover from this shameful situation".

Who knows, maybe Australia will shock the world in Russian Federation...

English ex-forward and pundit Gary Lineker compared Cueva's miss to a similarly-ballooned penalty by Italy's Roberto Baggio that gave the 1994 World Cup to Brazil.

Add Messi's saved attempt against Iceland on Saturday at the World Cup to misses for Argentina in shootouts for the Copa America title, and for Barcelona in a Champions League semifinal match that was later lost. I think we have a clear identity. He's a genius and he plays like a genius.

VAR has been used to varying degrees of success in Serie A and the German Bundesliga, while Federation Internationale de Football Association used the system at the Confederations Cup in Russia previous year.

Two years on, "Les Bleus" arrive in Russian Federation with high hopes of young players such as Kylian Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele and buttressed by more experienced stars such as Manchester United's Paul Pogba and Antoine Griezmann, who announced this week he is staying at Atletico Madrid.

He stood on the pitch on his own after the final whistle for a long while, but Aguero said Messi's penalty struggles only "show he's human" and backed him to recover before they face Croatia on Thursday.

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