Sunday, April 15, 2018

Argentina Projected 2018 World Cup Team

Argentina 2018
Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

My projected World Cup teams for SpainBrazilGermanyArgentinaEngland and France.

Final squad different vs my prediction on this blog
Out: Nahuel Guzmán, Fabricio Bustos, Ramiro Funes Mori, Ángel Correa. 

In: Franco Armani, Cristian Ansaldi, Maximiliano Meza, Cristian Pavón.

This is my projection of Argentina's 23 member squad at the 2018 World Cup Finals in Russia. At the time of writing(April, 2018), I came up with players with the most often used in recent games.
GK: Sergio Romero
Romero started his career with racing Club before moving to Europe where he played for AZ, Sampdoria and Monaco.  At the time of writing, he is a backup keeper with Manchester United. At the time of writing, he warned over 90 caps.  he was Argentina's starting keeper at both WC Finals in 2010 and 2014.
Sergio Romero
GK: Nahuel Guzmán (UANL)
Guzman made his professional debut for Newell's Old Boys in August 2006 against C.A. Belgrano. On 2008, he went on loan to Independiente Rivadavia until 2009. He became a key to the championship of Newell's in the 2013 Final Tournament.  In 2014,  he was transferred to Liga MX club Tigres UANL.  Since 2014, he has been capped by Argentina.

GK: Willy Caballero (Chelsea)
Caballero spent most of his career in Spain, representing Elche and Málaga and competing in La Liga with the latter club. In the summer of 2014 he signed for Manchester City, helping them win the 2016 League Cup.  In 2017, he joined Chelsea.  He has been a member of Argentine national team as long as 2005, but he only made his first appearance in 2018.

RB/CB: Gabriel Mercado (Sevilla)
He began his career with Racing Club and Estudiantes before joining River Plate in 2012, going on to win six domestic and international tournaments including the 2015 Copa Libertadores. In 2016, he joined Sevilla for €2.5 million. In 2010, he received his first cap for Argentina.
Gabriel Mercado
RB/RW: Fabricio Bustos (Independiente)
Fabricio Bustos is a youth product of Independiente.  Since 2016, he has appeared for their senior squad,winning the Copa Sudamericana in 2017.  In 2017, he received his first callup by the national team, making his debut in a friendly against Italy in March, 2018.

CB: Nicolás Otamendi (Manchester City)
Otamendi played mainly for Vélez Sarsfield and Porto in his early career, winning eight major titles with the latter including three national championships and the 2011 Europa League. In 2015, he signed for Manchester City from Valencia.  He was a member of Diego Maradona's World Cup squad in 2010, but missed out in 2014.
Nicolás Otamendi 
CB: Ramiro Funes Mori (Everton)
Ramiro Funes Mori spent his childhood in the United States. He made his professional debut with River Plate in 2010.  In 2015, he joined Everton in the English Preimers League.  Since 2015, he made his debut with the national team. He was a part of the  Copa América Centenario in 2016.

CB: Federico Fazio (AS Roma)
He began his career at Ferro Carril Oeste, signing for Sevilla in 2007. He made 201 official appearances for the latter club in nine years and scored 15 goals, joining Tottenham Hotspur in August 2014. He failed to settle in England. He joined AS Roma after loan spells with Sevilla and Roma.  In 2011, he received his first cap.

LB: Marcos Rojo (Manchester United)
Rojo began his career at local club Estudiantes de La Plata, where he won the Copa Libertadores in 2009 and played in the Club World Cup Final later that year. After a short spell with Spartak Moscow he joined Sporting CP in 2012, and transferred to Manchester United two years later.  Since 2011, he is a regular member of the national team. 
Marcos Rojo 
LB: Nicolás Tagliafico (Ajax)
Tagliafico made his professional debut for Banfield  in the 2011 Clausura. In 2012, Tagliafico signed a one-year loan deal with Spanish club Real Murcia. In 2015, he made the move to Independiente.  In 2018, he moved to play for Ajax. He made his national team debut in 2017.

DM: Leandro Paredes (Zenit Saint Petersburg)
Leandro Paredes began his career with Boca Juniors in 2010.  He then played for Chievo Verona, AS Roma and Empoli in Italy  Since 2017, he plays for Zenit Saint Petersburg. At the time of writing, he has a single cap for a match against Singapore.

DM/CM: Lucas Biglia (AC Milan)
Biglia  played with Argentinos Juniors and Independiente at home.  Then, he spent seven seasons with Anderlecht. In 2013, he moved to Lazio. In 2017, he joined AC Milan. Since 2011, he is a regular starter for Argentina.  He played at the 2014 WC Final in Brazil. He had over 50 caps.

DM: Javier Mascherano (Hebei China Fortune)
Nicknamed "El Jefecito" ("The Little Chief"), he played for River Plate.  In 2005, he joined Corinthians along with Argentine compatriot, Carlos Tevez.  A year later, he moved to West Ham again with Tevez.  He later played for Liverpool and Barcelona.  He has made over 140 appearances for the Argentina national team, making him the second-most capped player in the country's history. He has represented the nation at five Copa América tournaments, and three World Cups,
Javier Mascherano

DM/CM: Éver Banega (Sevilla)
Banega started his career with Boca Juniors, and signed with Valencia in 2008 where he remained for several years, appearing in 162 official games and winning the 2008 Copa del Rey. After joining Sevilla in 2014, he conquered consecutive Europa League trophies. He got his first cap in 2008, but was not selected for both 2010 and 2014 World Cup Finals.

CM: Giovani Lo Celso (PSG)
Lo Celso was a youth product of Rosario Central. He made his professional debut in 2015. In 2016, he joined Paris St Germain in France.  In 2017, he made his debut for the national team. He also went to the Olympics in 2016 for the Under-23 team.

RW/FW:  Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
Born and raised in central Argentina, Messi was diagnosed with a growth hormone deficiency as a child. At age 13, he relocated to Spain to join Barcelona. At time of writing, he won 4 World Player of the Year and 5 Ballon d'Or.  For Argentina, he has played over 130 times.  At the time of writing, he has not won an international trophy for the national team, but reached three Finals in his career.
Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero
AM: Manuel Lanzini (West Ham)
From 2011 to 2014, he played for River Plate.  He currently holds the record of being the player that scored the earliest goal in the history of Argentina's derby, the Superclásico. He also played for Fluminense and Al Jazira in UAE before joining West Ham in 2015.  He received his first callus in 2017.

LW/LB: Marcos Acuña (Sporting CP)
From 2010 to 2014, he played for Ferro Carril Oeste.  Then, he joined Racing Club in 2014 and stayed there in 2017.  He was part of Racing's championship team that won the 2014 Argentine Primera División, cutting a streak of 13 years without titles. He joined Sporting CP in 2017.  He made the national team debut in 2017.

RW/FW: Ángel Di María (PSG)
After beginning his career with Rosario Central, Di María moved to Europe in 2007 to play for Benfica, earning a €25 million move to Real Madrid three years later. He played a major role in the club's 2011–12 La Liga triumph. After winning the UEFA Champions League with Real Madrid, he signed for Manchester United in 2014 for a British record £59.7 million, but joined PSG a year later for around £44 million. At the time of writing, he earned over 90 caps. He went to both 2010 and 2014 World Cup Finals.
Ángel Di María 
FW/AM: Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
El Kun became the youngest player ever to play in the Argentine Primera Division in 2003 when he played for Independiente.  In 2006, Atletico Madrid broke their transfer record to sign him.  He rewarded the club with the Europa Cup in 2010.  In 2011, he joined Manchester City. Again, he rewarded the club with an added time goal that won the Preimership for Manchester City's first ever title. At the time of writing, he had over 80 caps.  

FW/AM: Paulo Dybala (Juventus)
After beginning his career in Argentina with Instituto de Córdoba in 2011, he moved to Italian club Palermo in 2012; his performances in Serie A later earned him a transfer to Juventus in 2015, where he won the league title, the Coppa Italia and the Supercoppa Italiana during his first season with the club. Since 2015, he has played for Argentina and is considered one of their future stars.
Paulo Dybala 
FW: Ángel Correa (Atletico Madrid)
Ángel Correa started with San Lorenzo in 2013.  Then, in 2014, he joined Atletico Madrid in Spain's la Liga.  In 2014, Correa was sidelined for six months due to a heart tumour.  Since 2015, he has played for Argentina.  He is considered a future star.

ST: Gonzalo Higuain  (Juventus)
Higuain first starred for River Plate in Argentina.  He joined Real Madrid in 2006.  He would stay with the club until 2013.  Higuain later played with Napoli and Juventus.  In the 2015–16 season, he scored 36 league goals, winning the Capocannoniere title and equalling Gino Rossetti's 87-year-old record for goals in an Italian top-flight season. For the national team, he earned 52 caps.  He was brought into the national team after Argentina struggled to qualify for South Africa 2010.
Gonzalo Higuain  
Players considered
Lautaro Martínez, Darío Benedetto, Javier Pastore, Fernando Gago, Emanuel Mammana, Eduardo Salvio, Diego Perotti, Lautaro Martinez, Cristian Pavón.

Squad Explanation
-- I do not know much about this squad.  Most of the defensive players are unknown to me.
-- Many journalists are reporting that Mauro Icardi will not be going to Russia due to a feud with Lionel Messi.  His issue with Maxi Lopez might also be the reason.
-- Higuain has not been a part of Jorge Sampaoli's plan until the two recent friendly matches.  He would probably make the squad due  to Icardi's absence.
-- Paulo Dybala also has some issues with Lionel Messi and was left off in recent friendlies, but he probably would make the squad.
-- Fernando Gago has been injured.

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