26th of March 2018 Author: Johnny Karp
Two of the most prominent World Cup contenders clash on Tuesday in Madrid as Spain host Argentina for an international friendly match at Wanda Metropolitano stadium. The two teams have not met since 2010, when Argentina hammered Spain 4-1 in a friendly match with goals from Carlos Tevez, Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuain and Sergio Aguero. However, the record of the last four direct meetings shows two victories apiece, but all those matches were friendlies.
Spain had a fairly comfortable World Cup qualifying campaign, they won nine of their ten group matches and eventually won the group ahead of Italy. They conceded just three goals in their ten qualifying matches, but after the campaign they let in the same number of goals in a single match as they drew 3-3 with Russia in a friendly. Last week the Spaniards recorded a 1-1 draw in Germany after Rodrigo scored an early goal. David Silva has been allowed to leave the squad due to personal reasons.
Argentina had a troubled qualifying campaign, they won just seven of their eighteen qualification matches, scored just nineteen goals, but eventually managed to finish third in the South American group. Their fans are expecting a lot more from Lionel Messi and company, a generation of exceptional players that have not managed to win any trophies with their national team. Last week Argentina did well to beat Italy 2-0 in Manchester, with goals from Ever Banega and Manuel Lanzini. Lionel Messi did not play due to a slight injury, but he might get some minutes of action on Tuesday.
Spain: De Gea - Carvajal, Ramos, Pique, Alba - Koke, Rodri, Iniesta - Isco, Costa, Asensio
Argentina: Romero - Mercado, Otamendi, Rojo, Tagliafico - Celso, Mascherano, Banega - Messi, Higuain, Pavon
My prediction: 2-2 draw.
Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:
Spain win - 2.00
Draw - 3.29
Argentina win - 4.00
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22nd of March 2018
Wow, that result should be a big worrying sign for Argentina and in the same time huge boost for the Spanish ambitions at the World Cup.
Spaniards looks back to their best after they were replaced by Germany of the top of the rankings in the last few years, but maybe they're back.
Argentines could only be thankful that this wasn't a world cup game and trying to improve of course.
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