Zanetti: Argentina can have an excellent World Cup

  • Some people's credentials speak for themselves. Take Javier Zanetti, for instance: who better to discuss the Argentinian nationwide team than their most-capped player, who represented La Albiceleste no fewer than 145 times over a 17-year period.

    Given this pedigree and perspective, the actual former right-back was the ideal choice to talk to FIFA. com about the team who had Argentinian fans on tenterhooks before booking their spot in the 2018 FIFA Globe Cup Russia™.

    FIFA. com: Argentina laboured on the road to Russia. What's your take on that campaign?

    Javier Zanetti: It was very difficult because we changed coach midway through qualifying. Such modifications are never easy. Southern American qualifying is definitely tough, and this period, Argentina had real trouble. We were within the brink: the last video game against Ecuador was make-or-break in terms of reaching the World Cup.

    How did you manage the nerves?

    We live in Italy, but based on what my loved ones and friends explained, I know the country was at a standstill, simply because Argentinians are hugely passionate about football and also the World Cup is very important to them. On the one hand, I am really pleased [that we've created it], but on the other hand, we've got lots to improve on.

    Are you excited by [Jorge] Sampaoli's eyesight?

    Yes. I'm impressed because he has clear ideas, but this individual needs time to implement them. He knows that he has some best players at their disposal and he himself is experienced, which is very important at a World Mug.

    You mentioned the actual upheaval during the strategy, which is epitomised by the situation at centre-forward. Gabriel Batistuta was fifa 18 coins obviously a nailed-on starter in attack in his time, as was Hernan Crespo later. Points are different now…There's been a lot of change in personnel. Until recently, Pipita [Gonzalo Higuain] was the undisputed No9. Now Mauro Icardi has got his opportunity, which is richly earned because of what he's doing for Inter Milan. Mauro works well for the national team, but that doesn't mean Higuain shouldn't be in the squad. Argentina are lucky enough to have an embarrassment of riches up front, from Pipita to Icardi, [Paulo] Dybala, [Lionel] Messi and so on. They've got a lot of options. I hope they can all go to the Globe Cup because they'd give the squad great strength in depth.

    Exactly what shape are Argentina in right now compared to other countries like Germany and South america?

    We're a step to their rear. They've got teams who've been working together for some time and that shows within the pitch. Still, we've got good players, and if we do good work between right now and Russia, we can have a great Globe Cup. It's not going to be easy, but Argentina always have their brand fighting spirit, which could go a long way in a World Cup.

    Is Messi alone enough to win it?

    Messi is an remarkable player, but your squad is pivotal: in a World Cup, the actual 11 players within the pitch and everybody else in the group may all play an essential role. We know that he's the man who can produce some thing special out of nothing, who can make things happen and be the actual match-winner, but Sampaoli has to come up with options.