The locker room was silent, steeped in sadness. Alejo Veliz, Juan Gauto AND Agostino Giay they couldn’t stop crying. Nigeria had just hit the world eliminating Argentina and the cries of the Africans were heard on every side. They sang and danced to the rhythm of a native dance. Some were even encouraged to make gestures that were read as provocative.
In that context, Javier Mascherano It came face to face with its leaders. “There is nothing to reproach”, said to them. It was his only message from him before leaving to explain to the press the reasons for a new, premature and painful defeat.
This is how the setback in San Juan was experienced: with few questions and blaming it on bad luck. There was no atmosphere of failure, beyond the shouts of the players. It is possible that the self-criticism take place in the next few days, when the disappointment has passed.
But the feeling is unmistakable: Javier Mascherano will continue to be the coach of Sub 20, . For Claudio Tapia, the head honcho of the AFA, the team left a different face in the World Cup than the one it showed in the South American and he wants the contract signed for 4 years to be respected. Also, mask He will be the one to manage the national team in the 2024 Venezuelan Pre-Olympic, although the exact date is disputed.
It is true that there are things that have been done well. Mascherano and his coaching staff have finalized the list of South American and they formed a more hierarchical and balanced team. In the first phase, the team played well and demonstrated good management of the various game modules. And the behavior of the defeated boys should also be noted.
But there are other downsides, of course. After all, an elimination in the round of 16 in a World Cup played in the country cannot be taken as something positive.
Argentina fell when they first faced against a weight rival. A little more: the boys quickly fell into a state of despair after Nigeria’s first goal, 16′ into the second half.
It also wasn’t clear changes which Mascherano has raised to face Nigeria, like the departures of Soulé and Perrone. Perhaps the victory against New Zealand has altered his plans. “We wanted to give continuity to the team that had played on the last date of the group stage”explained the DT.
“In defeat you have to believe in convictions more than ever. This is learning for everyone. It hurts me that the boys didn’t get the reward they deserved. We knew at some point we would have a mismatch and we paid dearly for it. It’s sad. We were the ones who carried the weight of the match, we tried at all times. It’s difficult to explain when you lose, but we were superior in the match.”Mascherano analysed.
The match against Nigeria took place exactly as Mascherano had warned the day before the duel: with individual pursuits of the Africans across the board. So what was Argentina’s idea?
“We wanted the player who had the ball to be the free player. That footballer had to make an opponent jump to leave the free mark. And there we had to find him with a pass. At the beginning we went out a lot on our own with Tomás Avilés , which was where they equaled us. We improved a lot when we realized that it was Valentín Gómez who had the superiority. Luka Romero went down there and Colo Barco was let loose or vice versa. This is what we tried. However, you don’t have to ask 18-year-olds years who watch football like 50 year olds”replied the DT.
There is a devastating figure for Argentina, the most champion of the Under 20 category with 7 titles: has not reached the semifinals in the last 7 World Cups.
For Egypt 2009 and Türkiye 2015 he did not qualify; in Colombia 2011, he lost in the quarterfinals against Portugal; in New Zealand 2015 and South Korea 2017 he fell in the first round; in Poland 2019, they were defeated by Mali in the round of 16; in Argentina 2023, elimination against Nigeria in the round of 16.
“I could talk deeply about what’s up to us, I don’t remember what the other World Cups were like. You have to understand that football has evolved and changed a lot, especially in the last 15 years. First with the quality and hierarchy of Argentine players that was enough and now we need to add a lot more content”Ensures Mascherano.
It will remain in the records a new hit from the Sub 20. The days to come should be days of deep analysis. Meanwhile, Mascherano takes a love he thought he didn’t have. “What we experienced in these days was beautiful. It’s been a while since I felt this way. Sometimes you have the wrong idea of people’s affection. This was a caress on the soul”closed the bus.
Saint John. Special delivery.
Jason Root is the go-to source for sports coverage at News Rebeat. With a passion for athletics and an in-depth knowledge of the latest sports trends, Jason provides comprehensive and engaging analysis of the world of sports.