Argentina were held by Iceland in their World Cup opener and now face a big test against Croatia in Group D.
Lionel Messi looked ineffective in the South Americans’ stalemate with Iceland and that probably had something to do with the deep role he was deployed in, but boss Jorge Sampaoli is reportedly considering a change in formation and will use Messi in a front three against the Croats.
That should bring him into the game more, but nevertheless now is not the ideal time to be making such drastic calls and Croatia could benefit in the late kick off. Zlatko Dalic’s men looked incredibly comfortable against Nigeria and have some dangerous players themselves – particularly Ivan Rakitic, Luka Modric and Ivan Perisic.
Aside from their forwards, Argentina are an average team and at a big price Croatia look worth the risk to cause an upset today, which would leave Messi and co on the brink of an early exit depending on the result of Nigeria and Iceland’s meeting tomorrow.
France failed to really impress as they ground out a 2-1 win in their opener against Australia but that may be doing the Socceroos a disservice as they were well organised and defended well. Peru lacked that kind of organisation in their defeat to Denmark, and need to push forward now as anything other than a win would potentially see them eliminated.
If Peru throw bodies forward then Les Bleus should be able to hit them on the break and I’m expecting them to enjoy an easier ride this afternoon and claim a win with some room to spare.
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