Argentina have confirmed that they have mutually parted ways with Jorge Sampaoli following a disappointing World Cup campaign. The South Americans had to scrape through the group stages of the tournament but they were thereafter eliminated in the round of 16 stage where they lost 4-3 to eventual champions France.
As a result, there had been much pressure from the country’s faithful demanding the resignation of Sampaoli and the Argentine Football Association has now confirmed that the 58-year-old has been released from the head coach position, their statement read: “Today, the Argentine Football Association and the former national team coach, Jorge Sampaoli, have mutually agreed to the termination of their contract.”
Argentina manager Jorge Sampaoli has stressed that he is not underestimating the strength of Iceland after deciding to announce the starting line-up, a day before the encounter. The pair are expected to tussle during the opening World Cup game in Group D and Sampaoli has explained that he does not need to hide the line-up which has supposedly been leaked.
He said: “No, no, no, the reason why we have named our team in advance is because we knew since Wednesday what we wanted to do.I’ve told you today because we have trained with the starting XI and I don’t believe it’s necessary to hide this information.We know Iceland’s main man, their captain [Aron Gunnarsson], is recovering from injury but they play well as a group and I’m sure it’s going to be very tough against them.They defend in depth and will probably play on the counter attack. Iceland will be a tough team to beat.”
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has confirmed that Sergio Aguero should return to full fitness ahead of this summer’s World Cup finals in Russia. The Argentine had to undergo a knee surgery shortly after City’s Champions League quarter-final exit to Liverpool but Guardiola expects him to return to a good condition before the World Cup kickstarts in Russia, he said: “I have had information from [Dr Ramon] Cugat that he will arrive okay [at the World Cup].”
Aguero’s position had come into question during the backend of the previous campaign but there have been no such doubts this term. Over the course of the 2017/18 season, Aguero has netted 30 goals for the club, but he has unfortunately been stranded on 199 goals since the League Cup final triumph over Arsenal in February.Continue reading
Argentina head coach Jorge Sampaoli has admitted that the likes of Paulo Dybala and Mauro Icardi could miss out on the World Cup despite impressing for their respective clubs this term. The pair have enjoyed good run of form with Juventus and Inter Milan respectively, but Sampaoli has stressed that they have not been able to replicate the results at the national stage.
Sampaoli said: “It is complicated for Dybala to get used to our system. We couldn’t improve his performances and we have to evaluate if the current players [in this squad] are better than Paulo or if we have to keep working with Paulo to improve his performance. Icardi’s situation is similar to Dybala’s. The transition of Icardi’s performance from Inter to Argentina weren’t the best. I don’t dismiss him, but, as Argentina’s coach I have to focus on performances in the field.”