Tag Archives: South American qualifying

Argentina v Brazil – review

Not quite how I expected the game to pan out but the right result anyway (see earlier post).

Argentina will qualify for the World Cup as even if they finish fifth in their group the play-off is against Saudi-Arabia or Bahrain (I think). The fundamental problems are there for all to see:

  • The centre of the defensive is not organised. Think how many games Terry and Ferdinand played together compared to constantly changing Argentina two.
  • There is no width. Maradona played a 4-4-2 in the first half and the wide men rarely troubled Maicon or Santos. Playing a 4-4-2 against a 4-2-3-1 leaves no room for anyone to create in the middle of midfield.
  • Don’t use a 4-3-3 with Tevez, Auguro and Messi as the front three. There is no direct striker to poach; no Etoo, Drogba, Fabinano etc. Play Milito!

Brazil, however, looked comfortable without really impressing. I think their number 7 position (outside right of a front three) is proving problematic. Elano and Ramierez are not making it their own but I’m sure Dunga has enough options.

P.S. Odds on both Adriano and Ronaldo going to the World Cup? I’d take Ronaldo simply for his presence – best footballer ever.


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Argentina v Brazil – preview

Having watched a number of South American qualifying matches and Brazils recent Confederations Cup victory I am very excited about the a prospect of the forthcoming Argentina v Brazil match.


Argentina have moved the fixture away from their traditional ground in order to give their players the best chance, both physically (due to the altitude) and mentally (the pitch is much closer to the stands).


Whether it will work or not is debatable. I can not see Brazil losing this match, and therefore, Argentina will not win. A feature of Brazils recent play has been their ability to counter attack successfully. If Argentina are struggling for a win towards the end of the match then Brazil will steal a march on them.


The key battle will be between Javier Zanetti and the Brazilian left back. I say ‘the Brazilian left back’ because I am unsure who Dunga will select; Santos, Dani Alves, Maicon or A.N. Other. My money would be on Dani Alves for the reason that he plays against Messi everyday in training and has the pace required to get up and down the pitch.


If Zanetti, a man in the twilight of his career, is to support Messi and draw either Silva or Melo into support the left back, thereby creating space for Veron, he needs to be able to be able to race back and stop any developing attack. I can see Brazil having a lot of joy down Argentina’s right and, as such, Zanetti will be vitally important.


I don’t think he’s up to it and Brazil will either draw or, more likely, beat Argentina. We’ll see at 1:30am for what will be a cracking match.

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