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Would Argentina have been better without Messi?

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2 minutes ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

I still don’t understand what your argument is here. You’re saying the manager is doing badly, I agree. Do you think Sampaoli does better if he doesn’t have Messi to choose from?

You think they’ll do better under a different manager and again I agree. Do you think that new manager has a better chance if Messi retires when he takes over?

I get your criticism of the management but I don’t understand what it has to do with whether Argentina are better without Messi. Any tips?

Manager doing badly and some players controlling a lot of things, mainly Mascherano.
Idk how else can you explain Benedetto starting in most qualifier games.
If he didn't tear his knee, he'd probably be in the squad instead of Higuain or Dybala.

As for the gameplan and team selection, I see it like this.

1. Absolute worst option - stuff they had for a while in qualifiers. No Messi and no gameplan.

2. Worst option, current one - everything relies on Messi and some old farts have to play because they're the senators of the squad, mainly Mascherano.

2. Compromise option, probably will happen because he will retire - proper gameplan, without Messi. As someone already said, sort of Sweden without Zlatan situation, just on a higher level.

4. Best option, which probably won't happen because Messi will retire - proper gameplan, with Messi. Him being just one of the players, the best one in the team no dobut, but one of the players, not the main guy for everything.

 

As I said, the best thing to do for them is not to invite anyone from this squad ever again. Except for Dybala, Lo Celso and Pavon. Others are 28yo or older anyway and there's 4 years until the next World Cup.

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4 minutes ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

I still don’t understand what your argument is here. You’re saying the manager is doing badly, I agree. Do you think Sampaoli does better if he doesn’t have Messi to choose from?

You think they’ll do better under a different manager and again I agree. Do you think that new manager has a better chance if Messi retires when he takes over?

I get your criticism of the management but I don’t understand what it has to do with whether Argentina are better without Messi. Any tips?

I think they would do better even under Sampaoli if Messi wasn't here. It's clear as a day that any manager who get Argentina job is terrified of unsettling Messi. So they always do whatever he want, even at the expense of the team. Someone mentioned them already, but Sweden is clear example what team can do without ultimate mega giga superstar around whom everything... What's the word? Revolve? 

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Alright, forget everything I wrote.

Sampaoli just said he has no intention of leaving.

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13 minutes ago, GunmaN1905 said:

Alright, forget everything I wrote.

Sampaoli just said he has no intention of leaving.

It may not be his choice....

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Messi's international career is probably over but then again he'll have Ronaldo for company since his career is now pants.

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2 hours ago, decapitated said:

And thus we come to the issue of finding a 'non-puppet' manager. If Sampaoli who has been fairly successful at international level can't control Messi then who? Simeone, Bielsa and Pochettino aren't avaliable or willing. the Obvious choice is either Gallardo or Barros Schelotto but does either of themhave the reputational power to control Messi if he doesn't retire. same with any manager whose only had success in Latin America. Who is to say Messi won't start dictating who gets picked, and if they stand up to him, they suddenly get sacked by the Argentine FA. 

 

Why the hell did you mentioned Bielsa? He was the mastermind of the total disaster in 2002 ffs :D 

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Messi is a convenient scapegoat, but have you seen how awful and CLUELESS the other 9 outfield players were?

Overlaps from the fullbacks seldom worked because the wide midfielders managed to consistently be in the wrong place or to make the wrong movement. Di Maria was shockingly awful, and the goal was his only positive contribution in his whole WC campaign.
Pavón looked much better as a sub against tired and defensively questionable sided.

Mascherano was finished. Banega is slow and was played out of position too!

Seriously, what was Messi supposed to do in such a terrible setup, both tactically, mentally and physically? If he dropped deeper to get the ball, he couldn't be up front to score, and surely his teammates didn't give him too many passing options. If he played higher, nobody was able to bring the ball near the box.

Now we'll see how many talents have been "held back" by the Messi-centric Argentina... Wanna bet it could get even worse???

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No, Messi is not the main problem.

 

The problems are many - Sampaoli seemed totally clueless, which ius surprising as I really rated him highly after what he did at Sevilla and Chile. His system was basily hoping that Messi would make something extraordinary out of the blue, and that simply doesn't work every time. Also not giving Dybala aor Lo Celso a proper chance is weird. Especially as Argentina really could use some youth in an aging squad, where many players are nowhere near the level from 2014.

 

If Messi should've won the World Cup it should've been last time and tbh they really came close there. And then the two Copa America finals lost on penalties. And he's their best goalscorer by far. And still people in Argentina will blame him for not winning anything for them (I really doubt that the Olympic Gold from 2008 counts very much) and that he's no Maradona.

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26 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

Messi is a convenient scapegoat, but have you seen how awful and CLUELESS the other 9 outfield players were?

Overlaps from the fullbacks seldom worked because the wide midfielders managed to consistently be in the wrong place or to make the wrong movement. Di Maria was shockingly awful, and the goal was his only positive contribution in his whole WC campaign.
Pavón looked much better as a sub against tired and defensively questionable sided.

Mascherano was finished. Banega is slow and was played out of position too!

Seriously, what was Messi supposed to do in such a terrible setup, both tactically, mentally and physically? If he dropped deeper to get the ball, he couldn't be up front to score, and surely his teammates didn't give him too many passing options. If he played higher, nobody was able to bring the ball near the box.

Now we'll see how many talents have been "held back" by the Messi-centric Argentina... Wanna bet it could get even worse???

I think no one here is portraying Messi as a scapegoat :). Besides that your argumentation is rather weak, it's more a short enumeration of why everyone is to blame except for Messi because his teammates weren't good enough. Don't forget that his teammates scored most of the Argentinian goals this tournament and also the one the made sure Argentina narrowly escaped elimination in the group stage. 

In the end none of the Argentinian players managed to reach their level and whether you like it or not, that includes Messi. 

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1 ora fa, Cedrik ha scritto:

I think no one here is portraying Messi as a scapegoat :).

Well, the thread's title kinda hints that Argentina would have been better off WITHOUT Messi... That's even worse than scapegoating ;)

 

1 ora fa, Cedrik ha scritto:

Besides that your argumentation is rather weak, it's more a short enumeration of why everyone is to blame except for Messi because his teammates weren't good enough. Don't forget that his teammates scored most of the Argentinian goals this tournament and also the one the made sure Argentina narrowly escaped elimination in the group stage. 

Messi scored once and created two more goals. Subpar, yes, but look at how ALL the goals came:

v Iceland: a fluffed shot became an assist for Aguero. Basically a solo effort from a random play
v Nigeria: Another solo effort (Messi) and a well-crafted, albeit rather basic, move (Rojo)
v France: A long shot, a deflection and a late goal from a long, direct ball.

So, out of 6 goals, only Rojo's was coming from some sort of teamplay. Then two long balls, two lucky situations and a long shot.

Sure, everyone underperformed, but, as said, Messi can't both build up and finish the attack... The whole attacking phase was in a shambles, almost regardless of where Messi was and of what he was doing.
You can say the Messi-centrism influenced negatively the rest of the team, but in fairness they all looked disjointed and confused. There was no clear plan anyway, either with Messi as False Nine, AMC, or Roaming Playmaker.

 

1 ora fa, Cedrik ha scritto:

In the end none of the Argentinian players managed to reach their level and whether you like it or not, that includes Messi. 

Of course including Messi.

But considering how poor everyone was, especially the attacking players, asking if they'd have been a better side without Messi is frankly ludicrous.

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9 hours ago, Orzelek said:

 

Why the hell did you mentioned Bielsa? He was the mastermind of the total disaster in 2002 ffs :D 

I forgot he managed them then :D !

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No. Football is about using the right tactical set-up on a game by game basis against different opponents, being balanced both in defence and attack but being positionally well set up and organised and strong with a good defensive block and an aggressive press, attacking at the right time but being quicker to get in the last third and being creative and penetrative in trying to score. It's about the manager first, who sets the team up and organises them, then it's about the players how they respond to those tactics and how well they improvise during a game. Messi, if anything, with all the above being set up correctly, would have enhanced the Argentina side, but with a poorly organised Argentina side conceding too much space at the back with a high line and also not being quick to the press and to get the ball in the danger areas, were unable to offer a sterner test using Messi more effectively. 

Edited by chelseaboyz

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The short answer is 'probably not', because they have a poor squad. However, what i noticed last night was that both Argentina and Portugal suffered for relying too much one one key player at the expense of teamwork. Contrast with the winners - Uruguay have 2 top class strikers but the players behind them worked as an effective unit. The focus on France may be on Mbappe but the team was hardly Mbappe and 10 water-carriers.

This is potentially good news for England, who Southgate has rescued from over-emphasis on Kane to mould the First Choice XI into an effective unit. On the other hand, the same fate may await Brazil if they depend too heavily on Neymar. I see other potential quarter-finalists as great teams such as Croatia and Spain.

I am aware of my FM bias here - I watch games as an FM manager, and I'm the kind of manager that focuses on building a cohesive squad who outsmart opponents through good tactics rather than buying up the best players.

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8 hours ago, RBKalle said:

Well, the thread's title kinda hints that Argentina would have been better off WITHOUT Messi... That's even worse than scapegoating ;)

 

Messi scored once and created two more goals. Subpar, yes, but look at how ALL the goals came:

v Iceland: a fluffed shot became an assist for Aguero. Basically a solo effort from a random play
v Nigeria: Another solo effort (Messi) and a well-crafted, albeit rather basic, move (Rojo)
v France: A long shot, a deflection and a late goal from a long, direct ball.

So, out of 6 goals, only Rojo's was coming from some sort of teamplay. Then two long balls, two lucky situations and a long shot.

Sure, everyone underperformed, but, as said, Messi can't both build up and finish the attack... The whole attacking phase was in a shambles, almost regardless of where Messi was and of what he was doing.
You can say the Messi-centrism influenced negatively the rest of the team, but in fairness they all looked disjointed and confused. There was no clear plan anyway, either with Messi as False Nine, AMC, or Roaming Playmaker.

Of course including Messi.

But considering how poor everyone was, especially the attacking players, asking if they'd have been a better side without Messi is frankly ludicrous.

The thread states the question whether Argentina would have been better without Messi, not better off. And you have to answer that questions from a perspective where you take in mind that without Messi the whole squad probably would have looked differently, because as pointed out, in the Argentinian national team the main focus was to make Messi function well. Sampaoli even stated it was not his team, it was Messi's team. That underlines where the focus was. It's understandable, but not beneficial to the overall squad. Especially taken in consideration that for so many years this was already tried and failed to work. And again to emphasise, this is not Messi's fault. I would almost say he is a victim in the whole situation.

Edited by Cedrik

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the national team has been a poisoned chalice for Messi. But the National team is very different than club team, you don't have team members making so cosy passes and movements, it is probably hard to adjust.  Maradona breathing down Messi's neck probably also has not been helpful.

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4 ore fa, Cedrik ha scritto:

The thread states the question whether Argentina would have been better without Messi, not better off.

Potayto, Potahto...

4 ore fa, Cedrik ha scritto:

And you have to answer that questions from a perspective where you take in mind that without Messi the whole squad probably would have looked differently, because as pointed out, in the Argentinian national team the main focus was to make Messi function well. Sampaoli even stated it was not his team, it was Messi's team. That underlines where the focus was. It's understandable, but not beneficial to the overall squad. Especially taken in consideration that for so many years this was already tried and failed to work. And again to emphasise, this is not Messi's fault. I would almost say he is a victim in the whole situation.

Ok.

Assuming Messi would have stayed retired from the NT from 2016 onwards, do you honestly think Argentina'd have become a better side?

What kind of playing style could have they employed that'd have worked BETTER without Messi? I honestly fail to see many Top Players who were hindered by Messi's presence, both tactically and mentally.
They lack pace and creativity in midfield, their forwards are inconsistent (with Aguero being the most reliable one, but still not the kind of forward who can win you game after game by himself, much less so in a chaotic setup).

Is the absence of a decent keeper Messi's fault too? And what about the limited choices for fullbacks and the sloooow CBs?

To me it's like asking "Could McLaren have won races without Alonso?"

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Absurd question! And no! I think players around him are poor, and not providing decent balls to him. They was expecting Messi to take on 10 outfield players by himself.

Edited by john1

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14 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

Assuming Messi would have stayed retired from the NT from 2016 onwards, do you honestly think Argentina'd have become a better side?

What kind of playing style could have they employed that'd have worked BETTER without Messi? I honestly fail to see many Top Players who were hindered by Messi's presence, both tactically and mentally.
They lack pace and creativity in midfield, their forwards are inconsistent (with Aguero being the most reliable one, but still not the kind of forward who can win you game after game by himself, much less so in a chaotic setup).

Perhaps they would have been indeed. Who would have thought Sweden would become a better side without Zlatan? Yet they did. 

No one is stating the presence of Messi directly hinderend anyone, you're completely taking things out of context now. I am saying that the focus of the national team wasn't so much on creating the best possible team, but creating the best circumstances for Messi to succeed and function. This is justified if it works due to the outstanding quality that Messi has, but over the years it rarely did. Therefore taking the focus now away from one player and looking the better picture there are definitely possibilities to create a better team than there has been the past years. 

27 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

Is the absence of a decent keeper Messi's fault too? And what about the limited choices for fullbacks and the sloooow CBs?

Again, no one is saying anything is the direct fault of Messi. You come a bit across as a frustrated fan who can't handle the fact that the reality isn't as one sided as you would like to see (everyone to blame except for Messi). 

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12 minutes ago, john1 said:

Absurd question! And no! I think players around him are poor, and not providing decent balls to him. They was expecting Messi to take on 10 outfield players by himself.

Great avatar.

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I don't think they'd have even qualified if it weren't for him.

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If Argentina smash it in Qatar then the answer is yes, assuming he's retired, again. 

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15 minutes ago, Cedrik said:

Perhaps they would have been indeed. Who would have thought Sweden would become a better side without Zlatan? Yet they did. 

No one is stating the presence of Messi directly hinderend anyone, you're completely taking things out of context now. I am saying that the focus of the national team wasn't so much on creating the best possible team, but creating the best circumstances for Messi to succeed and function. This is justified if it works due to the outstanding quality that Messi has, but over the years it rarely did. Therefore taking the focus now away from one player and looking the better picture there are definitely possibilities to create a better team than there has been the past years. 

Again, no one is saying anything is the direct fault of Messi. You come a bit across as a frustrated fan who can't handle the fact that the reality isn't as one sided as you would like to see (everyone to blame except for Messi). 

Honestly I think you're just as far on the other side. I don't get the Zlatan comparisons. Zlatan is half the playmaker Messi is and plays more advanced. 

Zlatan is a great player but he's a lot more difficult to build around than Messi. 

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Also 1 thing I really, really, really don't get is this "they always look for Messi" thing. 

If they'd done that more they'd probably have looked better than what they were. They had defenders who were poor on the ball passing between themselves, Biglia and Mascherano (later Banega). Then once they eventually got further up they had Enzo Perez trying solo efforts, Di María too albeit it came off once.

Messi should have done more absolutely, but what's the basis for the argument. Is it because they couldn't create when they tried, So people assume it's because they looked for Messi when often he wasn't used?

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14 minutes ago, gavo01 said:

If Argentina smash it in Qatar then the answer is yes, assuming he's retired, again. 

If this exact same group without Messi does well in Qatar then maybe you'd have a point but seeing as loads can change in 4 years I highly doubt that will be the case.

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6 minutes ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

Zlatan is a great player but he's a lot more difficult to build around than Messi. 

Why?

In the end, he'sa striker. He doesn't need the ball to be effective.
I'm referring to his younger days, not now when he's 37yo.

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1 minute ago, GunmaN1905 said:

Why?

In the end, he'sa striker. He doesn't need the ball to be effective.
I'm referring to his younger days, not now when he's 37yo.

Strikers rely on service more than midfielders. 

I'm referring to now, seeing as it's the only version of Zlatan relevant to the analogy of how Sweden are better without him.

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28 minuti fa, Cedrik ha scritto:

Perhaps they would have been indeed. Who would have thought Sweden would become a better side without Zlatan? Yet they did. 

Zlatan was poisonous for the dressing room, with his "it's all about ME, I am Zlatan, you're nobodies" attitude.

Sweden are as mediocre as they were with Zlatan, only they don't have to play for him all the time and they can misplace a pass or two without being mouthed off by their alleged leader.

 

28 minuti fa, Cedrik ha scritto:

No one is stating the presence of Messi directly hinderend anyone, you're completely taking things out of context now. I am saying that the focus of the national team wasn't so much on creating the best possible team, but creating the best circumstances for Messi to succeed and function. This is justified if it works due to the outstanding quality that Messi has, but over the years it rarely did. Therefore taking the focus now away from one player and looking the better picture there are definitely possibilities to create a better team than there has been the past years. 

Again, it'd make sense had the rest of the potential team not been woefully lacking in some key areas.

I'm just asking "who and how could have led Argentina further and in a convincing way"? So far, the only answer I'm getting is a vague "I don't know, but building a team around Messi didn't work"

 

28 minuti fa, Cedrik ha scritto:

Again, no one is saying anything is the direct fault of Messi. You come a bit across as a frustrated fan who can't handle the fact that the reality isn't as one sided as you would like to see (everyone to blame except for Messi). 

Far from reality...

I don't have a horse in this race, except common sense and football logic.

They're ALL to blame, but expecting Messi to carry the worst and most unbalanced Argentina side EVER is absurd, and so is criticizing him and whoever "dared" to build the NT around him. Especially considering they didn't leave out or phased out world-class players to accomodate Messi. Who, BTW, has never looked so out of his depth like in this World Cup.

Wanna single him out? Fair enough, he played well below his standards, but what did the other 9 outfield players do to help?

Same goes for CR7 last night... Is his fault if the rest of the Portugal attacking players combined aren't worth a thing?

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They wouldn't have even qualified without Messi. Take Messi out and they're one of the worst teams I've seen at the World Cup.

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This Argentinian team is terrible and nobody is blaming Messi for those conceded goals, people are blaming him for other things.

What about 2014? Argentina conceded 1 goal in 420 minutes of knockout games, 4 games and two extra time games.
Offensive part of the team was basically the same, completely stacked on paper.
Messi had 0 goals and 1 assist in knockout phase.

And he got the MVP of the tournament award and people acted as if he was playing alone.

That's the burden of being one of the best players in history. When his team does well, it's because of him, even if he didn't play as good as he should have. But when his team does badly, it's his fault, even if it wasn't.

It's down to Sampaoli if we're talking about their defensive performace.

Agentina's defense in 2014 was Rojo-Garay-Demichelis-Zabaleta.
And they played great. But now they looked like a bunch of amateurs.

Or do you think that 34yo Demichelis, who was incredibly slow, is a better player than Fazio?
Garay-Otamendi looks pretty even to me.
Mercado-Zabaleta?

It all comes down to coach and his idiotic tactical acrobations.
If he puts 4man defense one day in training, then 3man the other day, then back to 4man with different players the next day, you can't expect them to even remotely resemble a team.

Same goes for midfield.

Even with all these unexplainable omissions from the squad, their squad is more than good enough to be a threat in knockout phase.

2 minutes ago, given1legend said:

They wouldn't have even qualified without Messi. Take Messi out and they're one of the worst teams I've seen at the World Cup.

As I said last night, typical narrative of someone who hasn't watched them in qualifiers.

When Messi came back, they had following results.

0-0 Uruguay, 1-1 Venezuela, 0-0 Peru. With last two games being played at home. I remember Peru missing a few sitters to eliminate them from contention. Messi didn't do anything.

Then he scores 3 against second string Ecuador team that was absolutely dreadful and suddenly he's the second coming of Jesus.

As I said already about the burden of the best player.

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Didn't Argentina have a dismal record in the qualifiers without Messi? 1 win in 8 games without him iirc?

And you keep quoting the "1 assist and no goals in the knockout in 2014" as though it shows he was ****. It doesn't ffs.

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7 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

Zlatan was poisonous for the dressing room, with his "it's all about ME, I am Zlatan, you're nobodies" attitude.

Sweden are as mediocre as they were with Zlatan, only they don't have to play for him all the time and they can misplace a pass or two without being mouthed off by their alleged leader.

We're less mediocre without him! And quite many thought it was quite probable we would do better without him (many of our best results the last ten years was with Zlatan missing for one reason or another). Now we got eleven players doing their outmost to do their job. To be fair to Zlatan, he did what he was supposed to, unfortunately the previous manager thought it was a good idea to have the plan: "Let Zlatan do what he wants" and that was basically the match plan. And as you wrote, the other players just tried to pass the ball to Zlatan, afraid of committing a mistake, making it easy to nullify the offensive threat if Zlatan was not on a great day. And being a man short defensively (since Zlatan basically never did any defensive work, besides defending corners) we conceded quite a bit.

And usually forgotten, our back five is probably the best we've had since the mid-00s. Easily missed with the Zlatan (and Larsson) hype, Fredrik Ljungberg was far more important than most give him credit for. 

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2 minutes ago, Pukey said:

Didn't Argentina have a dismal record in the qualifiers without Messi? 1 win in 8 games without him iirc?

And you keep quoting the "1 assist and no goals in the knockout in 2014" as though it shows he was ****. It doesn't ffs.

He wasn't sh**, but as I said, I hate the bloody narrative that it was him single handedly (footedly?) carrying them to the finals when that's absolutely not true.

And throughout this discussion about Messi, I'm valuing him as GOAT candidate, not just another quality player.

So for an ordinary top class player, he played great. For GOAT level player, he didn't.

They had an abysmal record because of the stuff I wrote about Sampaoli. Martino did the same thing.

Kept throwing random combinations of players and formations and hoping for the best.

Edited by GunmaN1905

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1 minute ago, GunmaN1905 said:

He wasn't sh**, but as I said, I hate the bloody narrative that it was him single handedly (footedly?) carrying them to the finals when that's absolutely not true.

And throughout this discussion about Messi, I'm valuing him as GOAT candidate, not just another quality player.

So for an ordinary top class player, he played great. For GOAT level player, he didn't.

They had an abysmal record because of the stuff I wrote about Sampaoli. Martino did the same thing.

Kept throwing random combinations of players and formations and hoping for the best.

Messi didn't carry them to the final but he did carry them through the group stage.

In the knockout stages Mascherano was the key.

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1 minute ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

Messi didn't carry them to the final but he did carry them through the group stage.

In the knockout stages Mascherano was the key.

And what was the excuse for a guy that regularly scores 1 goal per game and 50 goals per season not to score a single goal in whole knockout phase?

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7 minutes ago, GunmaN1905 said:

And what was the excuse for a guy that regularly scores 1 goal per game and 50 goals per season not to score a single goal in whole knockout phase?

Where did I excuse him? He was pretty good but not great, until the final where he looked like he couldn't even run for whatever reason. He looked physically shot by the final.

Plus he played a different role. You can absolutely question performances but honestly this obsession with goals is ****ing tiring. 

Edited by EnterUsernameHere

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22 minutes ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

Honestly I think you're just as far on the other side.

If you think that, you clearly haven't read my contributions to this thread. 

3 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

Zlatan was poisonous for the dressing room, with his "it's all about ME, I am Zlatan, you're nobodies" attitude.

Sweden are as mediocre as they were with Zlatan, only they don't have to play for him all the time and they can misplace a pass or two without being mouthed off by their alleged leader.

These are all random assumptions, unless of course you have been present in the Swedish dressing room. Sweden's football is (still) awful imo, but on the pitch they seem a better team than with they were with Zlatan. 

15 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

Again, it'd make sense had the rest of the potential team not been woefully lacking in some key areas.

I'm just asking "who and how could have led Argentina further and in a convincing way"? So far, the only answer I'm getting is a vague "I don't know, but building a team around Messi didn't work"

I am obviously not a manager, or did you expect me to make some kind of line-up now and name a coach? But since you're asking, when Messi decides to quit after this WC, I would focus on a younger generation with players like Icardi and Dybala also getting more involvement. Some of these things should have perhaps also been implemented before the start of this tournament. A proper manager could perhaps someone be like the already named Diego Simeone. 

Secondly, I never stated that building a team around Messi didn't work. I said the focus has always been on making Messi function instead of building the best possible squad. Those are different things.

20 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

I don't have a horse in this race, except common sense and football logic.

They're ALL to blame, but expecting Messi to carry the worst and most unbalanced Argentina side EVER is absurd, and so is criticizing him and whoever "dared" to build the NT around him. Especially considering they didn't leave out or phased out world-class players to accomodate Messi. Who, BTW, has never looked so out of his depth like in this World Cup.

Wanna single him out? Fair enough, he played well below his standards, but what did the other 9 outfield players do to help?

Same goes for CR7 last night... Is his fault if the rest of the Portugal attacking players combined aren't worth a thing?

I already mentioned that he whole Argentine team was dreadful. And again, no one is blaming Messi specifically or saying the disappointing tournament from Argentina is his fault, damn are you even reading my posts or what? :D You're constantly twisting words here and there. In this way the discussion is going nowhere, let's agree to disagree concerning this matter, although I'm doubtful you even got my initial points :)

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1 minute ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

Where did I excuse him? He was pretty good but not great, until the final where he looked like he couldn't even run for whatever reason. He looked physically shot by the final.

Plus he played a different role. You can absolutely question performances but honestly this obsession with goals is ****ing tiring. 

It's not an obsession with goals. If he was scoring 20-30 per season, I wouldn't say a thing.

If he had some more assists it would be fine.

And then he gets the MVP award as a player that contributes nothing defensively on a team that scored 2 goals in 4 games and conceded 1.
Is that deserved?

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Just now, GunmaN1905 said:

It's not an obsession with goals. If he was scoring 20-30 per season, I wouldn't say a thing.

If he had some more assists it would be fine.

And then he gets the MVP award as a player that contributes nothing defensively on a team that scored 2 goals in 4 games and conceded 1.
Is that deserved?

Again you're putting words in my mouth if you think I said he deserved the MVP award. Like last night I don't even understand what point you're trying to make here. You say you're not obsessed with goals yet hold Messi's domestic goal record against him - a) goals aren't what make him great, b) his goal record season is far from his best one, c) he played a deeper role for Argentina.

He didn't deserve the MVP(what a crap american phrase) award and even he'd agree. What's your point? You keep arguing against things no one has even argued for.

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I use MVP because I forgot what's it called between all those golden balls, boots and whatnot. :D

My argument started from Argentina being an awful team.

Yes, they were absolutely awful over the past nearly two years ever since Copa Centenario final, but it was mostly due to terrible coaching.

If teams with so much less talent can look solid and have a proper gameplan, there's no reason Argentina shouldn't.

And part of that issue is that no coach had courage to change Messi's status so he becomes just another player in the system.

 

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2 minutes ago, GunmaN1905 said:

I use MVP because I forgot what's it called between all those golden balls, boots and whatnot. :D

My argument started from Argentina being an awful team.

Yes, they were absolutely awful over the past nearly two years ever since Copa Centenario final, but it was mostly due to terrible coaching.

If teams with so much less talent can look solid and have a proper gameplan, there's no reason Argentina shouldn't.

And part of that issue is that no coach had courage to change Messi's status so he becomes just another player in the system.

 

100% agree other than the last paragraph. See my post earlier in the thread where I asked why do you think Messi is more than a player in the system? They certainly don't look to give him the ball immediately which would be indicative of someone who is key to the system. 

If anything they look (despite what Sampaoli says) to have taken the baffling Tata Martino approach, when he said the idea was to make Messi a decoy to give everyone else more room on the ball.

It didn't work.

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Well, Sampaoli said that Dybala can't play because him and Messi have same areas of movement so they would collide on the pitch.

There goes that.

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1 minute ago, GunmaN1905 said:

Well, Sampaoli said that Dybala can't play because him and Messi have same areas of movement so they would collide on the pitch.

There goes that.

I said despite what Sampaoli said. 

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18 minutes ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

If anything they look (despite what Sampaoli says) to have taken the baffling Tata Martino approach, when he said the idea was to make Messi a decoy to give everyone else more room on the ball.

Not sure how you make that out? He's had far more touches, dribbles, lost possession, and shots per 90 mins than any other attacking player in the side (and the bit where Sampaoli acknowledges he refused to consider other goal threats because they might compete for attention and possession with Messi is kinda important). They've played a different shape every game, but the common factor is that they don't even consider arranging the team to get the best out of anyone else, even if Messi's not having a good game or a more direct approach looks potentially useful.

I mean, a side setting up to get the best out of Messi is hardly an unusual approach, and not necessarily the consequence of Messi having a massive ego, but it's not like Argentina's other attacking options couldn't have possessed a threat.

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About sweden, don't they also have a rather good generation that is coming to maturity?

They won the U21 euro in 2015, and have good young players.

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20 minutes ago, Cyp said:

About sweden, don't they also have a rather good generation that is coming to maturity?

They won the U21 euro in 2015, and have good young players.

We got 2 starters and 6 in the squad from that championship. Most of the players from the 2015 squad have stagnated (or even regressed) in their development.  Those two starters (Lindelöf and Augustinsson) are the only starters younger than 26. We have five starters who are 30+ and pretty much everyone considers are past their peak  (Lustig, Granqvist, Seb Larsson, Berg and Toivonen) and are winding down their careers (except Lustig). Basically it is now or never for the Swedish team, it is not a team which is likely to be better in 2 or 4 years time. 

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