- Lionel Messi and the rest of the Albiceleste squad members are in disarray after attempt to have manager, Jorge Sampaoli sacked
- The South American side are now banking on a lifeline after Nigeria’s 2-0 win over Iceland to reach the knockout rounds
- But Albiceleste squad members want Argentina’s 1986 World Cup winning star Jorge Barruchaga to be named new manager before facing Nigeria
Lionel Messi and the rest of the Albiceleste squad members are in disarray after attempt to have manager, Jorge Sampaoli sacked ahead of Nigeria showdown fails, suggest reports coming out of the team’s camp in Russia.
According to the UK Sun report, the Barcelona midfielder and teammates’ demanded the immediate removal of the former Sevilla boss after the Albiceleste 3-0 pumping by Croatia’s Blazers.
However, the South American side are now banking on a lifeline following Nigeria’s 2-0 win and will be praying to reach the knockout rounds, if they can beat the three time African champions in Tuesday’s showdown in St Petersburg.
Thus, during the team’s meeting held on Friday night, all 23 Albiceleste squad members demanded immediate talk with Sampaoli, his assistants as well FA boss Claudio Tapia.
Former Barcelona player Javier Mascherano was alleged to have led the move to sack Sampaoli, with the midfielder asking for a change in the managerial role as part of a “pact for life” before Nigeria’s showdown.
The Albiceleste squad members demanded the Argentina’s 1986 World Cup winning star Jorge Barruchaga, should take over from Sampaoli from his former role general manager of the national team.
Reacting on the revolt to topple Sampaoli, Burrachaga’s 1986 team-mates, Ricardo Giusti, a close pal of the general manager, revealed that the mood in the Albiceleste camp was brutal.
"The players want to build the team.
“They told Sampaoli and Tapia that they are going to pick the side. Sampaoli can sit on the bench if he wants, but it won’t matter. It will be nothing to do with him,” Giusti was quoted as saying.
Interestingly, the under-fire manager has adopted different tactics in the two previous fixtures at the ongoing 2018 Fifa World Cup in Russia.
The former Chile boss moved from a defensive quartet during the Iceland contest to three in the 3-0 pumping by Croatia, leaving the squad members convinced that the manager does not understand his team while strategizing for matches.
The report further revealed that the duo of Mascherano and striker Cristian Pavon almost exchanged blows in the dressing room, moments after the embarrassing defeat by Croatia after the former blasted shot-stopper Willy Caballero for his error.
Sadly, after making the plea to the FA eggheads, Sampaoli was allowed to continue as the Albiceleste manager after a confidential talk with FA boss, Claudio Tapia, ahead of the cracker with Nigeria’s Super Eagles.
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com previously had reported that Argentina legend Diego Maradona cried for Argentina after the South American nation were walloped 3-0 by Croatia at the ongoing 2018 Fifa World Cup in Russia.
According to the UK Telegraph, it was a nightmare for the former Argentina captain and 1986 World Cup winner, who excelled as a player, but could not hold back the tears after the Albiceleste were taught some football lessons by their European opponents.
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