Copa America 2011: Who will you support?

In 2007, we had the last Copa America and, of course, I tuned in because it was conveniently on my TV and it sated my Messi obsession. The first full match I happened to watch was Argentina vs Mexico (I get the feeling that Mexicans must really hate meeting Argentina. They always seem to lose *dodges flying objects* I’m just sayin! Please don’t kill me! *runs away*) and I got to see this Messi golazo:

Although I actually like the Spanish commentary better (actually, I just love that commentator. I swear, he’s the Ray Hudson of Spanish commentary. “Welcome to the jungle!” 😆 ).

Anyway, the point of this is, Argentina will be looking to win the Copa (the only title Maradona didn’t win apparently) on home turf and I will be supporting Messi and therefore Argentina by default. The last time around they lost 3-0 to Brazil in a final that featured Dani who I knew fudge all about and who also happened to score. Funnily enough, the U-20 tournament I seem to mention every other day was also underway and Aguero’s Argies had won their semis. Brazilians took this time to blare their car horns downtown near Landsdown Park (the stadium that the games were played at). I’m not sure what I’m trying to say by telling you all this, so I’m going to move on.

Argentina are in Group A and, as hosts, play the first match tomorrow against Bolivia at 8:45pm EST under huge, huge pressure to perform. Sergio Batista took them to a Olympic gold in 2008, but there will be no Riquelme or…Riquelme this time around. Their squad features Aguero, Pastore, Mascherano, Milito and a whole host of names. I can imagine the pressure Messi must feel, considering the shaky relationship with Argentine fans, but he thrives under pressure. Vamos Leo!

Bitter rivals Brazil (or should I say, Brasil) have Dani and Adriano in the squad and they’ll be looking to rain on Argentina’s parade by defending their Copa title and traumatizing the poor Argentine supporters for life, especially the fans of Los Millonarios. They really will cry a River. (Sorry, couldn’t help it). The Next Robinho Big Thing out of Brazil Neymar, Santos teammate Ganso and Sao Paulo FC midfielder Lucas will have Robinho as a big brother to guide them though their first Copa.

“Ronaldo always gave me advice on and off the field. All that good advice given to me, I am passing on to young Neymar, Lucas and Ganso” said Robinho.

[Insert smart remark here].

God help the Brazilian team. They get their party started Sunday at 3:00pm EST against Lev’s Venezuela. 😛

A Marco Bielsa-less Chile will look to overcome the loss of the Argentine and wow the world like they did last summer with their vibrant, attacking football against a JDS-less* U-22 Mexico on Monday at 8:45pm EST. They have our transfer target Alexis Sanchez, Villarreal-reject Mati Fernandez (Matigol!) and Bayer Leverkusen’s Arturo Vidal to boost their chances at being the first Chilean team to win the Copa.

*If you don’t know JDS has been a bad boy and won’t be in the Mexico squad for the tournament. He and 7 other players have been dismissed from the squad and suspended for 6 months for allowing hookers into their rooms, who also stole their stuff. Sigh. Jona, you were supposed to be better than your brother by getting into the first team, not messing up your career faster.

The joint third best team in the world according to the last WC Uruguay start their quest to slap Argentina in the face by winning the Copa (which, I guess, is what everyone wants to do. Stop bullying los Albicelestes!) against Peru on Monday, while the-team-who-almost-knocked-out-Spain (Paraguay) take on Ecuador a day previous.

The Copa America 2011 kicks off tomorrow and in the words of Messi;

¡Aguante, Argentina, la c de tu madre!*

Full Schedule for Group Matches (all times in EST):

Group A

Argentina vs. Bolivia – July 1st – 20:45 – La Plata
Colombia vs. Costa Rica – July 2nd – 14:30 – San Salvador de Jujuy
Argentina vs. Colombia – July 6 – 20:45 – Santa Fe
Bolivia vs. Costa Rica – July 7 – 18:15 – San Salvador de Jujuy
Colombia vs. Bolivia – July 10 – 15:00 – Santa Fe
Argentina vs. Costa Rica – July 11 – 20:45 – Córdoba

Group B

Brazil vs. Venezuela – July 3 – 15:00 – La Plata
Paraguay vs. Ecuador – July 3 – 17:30 – Santa Fe
Brazil vs. Paraguay – July 9 – 15:00 – Córdoba
Venezuela vs. Ecuador – July 9 – 17:30 – Salta
Paraguay vs. Venezuela – July 13 – 18:15 – Salta
Brazil vs. Ecuador – July 13 – 20:45 – Córdoba

Group C

Uruguay vs. Peru – July 4 – 18:15 – San Juan
Chile vs. Mexico – July 4 – 20:45 – San Juan
Uruguay vs. Chile – July 8 – 18:15 – Mendoza
Peru vs. Mexico – July 8- 20:45 – Mendoza
Chile vs. Peru – July 12 – 18:15 – Mendoza
Uruguay vs. Mexico – July 12 – 20:45 – La Plata

Quarterfinals

1st Group A vs. Best 3rd S1 – July 16 – 15:00 – Córdoba
2nd Group A vs. 2nd Group C S2 – July 16 – 18:15 – Santa Fe

1st Group B vs. 2nd Best 3rd S3 – July 17 – 15:00 – La Plata
1st Group C vs. 2nd Group B S4 – July 17 – 18:15 – San Juan

Semi-final

Winner S1 vs. Winner S2 G1 – July 19 – 20:45 – La Plata
Winner S3 vs. Winner S4 G2 – July 20 – 20:45 – Mendoza

3rd Place Game

Loser G1 vs. Loser G2 – July 23 – 15:00 – La Plata

Final

Winner G1 vs. Winner G2 – July 24 – 15:00 – Buenos Aires

———————

*It sounds really derogatory if you take it literally (Spanish speakers can attest to that) but it should be taken as “Let’s go, Argentina, God damnit!”.

Also, I dunno if there will be a LiveBlog for the match. Or if we’re actually going to cover the Copa. I doubt it.

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291 Comments

  1. yana
    June 30, 2011

    This is seriously awesome: reut.rs/iY6pOY

    I believe I shall now be a fan of any team Henok Goitom is on — or coaches — just on principle.

  2. beeeef
    June 30, 2011

    That schedule will come in handy for the next several weeks (EST, nice).

    I’m not rooting for any team in particular, but I’m looking forward to the individual performances of Ganso and Sanchez in particular. And I’d also like to see Pastore play with Messi.

    • June 30, 2011

      It’s worth noting that I changed it to EST. For those that live in Argentina or in that time zone, add one hour.

  3. Leckan1
    June 30, 2011

    Argentina because it’s high time for Messi to shut the Brazucas up. He and Argentina are ready. I’ll also keep an eye on Chile for obvious reasons.

  4. June 30, 2011

    By the by, Sanchez deal — if there is one, which I think there is — will be announced before the Copa i.e. tomorrow. It has to be because his price will definitely go up during it.

    It’s why the “rumour” of the Fabregas Sanchez deals being announced tomorrow are not really rumours, but common sense. The Spanish transfer window opens Friday.

  5. Soto
    June 30, 2011

    I will be supporting Argentina, now that it’s Maradona free.

    Messi, Tevez, and Mascherano tearing up the field. I can’t wait.

  6. June 30, 2011

    I’ll be supporting Argentina as well, because of Messi. The sooner he shuts the “he doesn’t perform for the NT” people up the better. And winning the Copa will be a good warm up for Argentina making a strong run at the World Cup in a few years.

  7. June 30, 2011

    Hey, what would be great is if we could post everything we konw about TV times and listings…. So far I do not see tomorrow’s Argentina game listed on Univision. I do see five other games on the channel though. These include Costa Rica v Colombia…Brazil Venezuala… Chile v Mexico.

    Does anyone know what channel the Argentina game will be on, any others???

    • mom4
      June 30, 2011

      Argentina is tomorrow on WMDOCA at 8:30 EST (note: I have no experience with this channel). Some of the games appear to be on Univision or WFDC. FSC, ESPN, and GOLTV have failed me 🙁
      Hopefully, barcastuff or totalBarca will post some links.

      • mom4
        June 30, 2011

        BTW- I’ll be supporting Messi…um, I mean Argentina. I’ll also be hoping for Dani to do well, but not really rooting for Brazil.

    • July 1, 2011

      According to livesoccertv.com, the Argentina game is on Telefutura in the United States. See here: http://www.livesoccertv.com/channels/telefutura/ Looks like the have all of the Copa America games in the USA.

      Time Warner cable is showing the game on Telefutura this evening, at least for Los Angeles — I didn’t check any other cities.

  8. Dani_el
    June 30, 2011

    I’m peruvian, so I’ll support Peru, but we had a streak of bad luck, Farfan and Zambrano from Schalke, Pizarro from Werder Bremen, Vargas from Fiorentina and Ramirez from Corinthians..they all have injuries, Vargas may play, he’s on the squad, and Pizarro is algo hanging with the team in Mendoza (but he really wont play), that really is a lot of bad luck, I hope we pass to the second stage though.
    It would be great that Argentina wins the cup, for Messi, Masche and Milito, they all deserve it, sorry danialves, but Argentina has more Barça players

    • June 30, 2011

      Yeah, I thought about putting that in. That’s unbelievably bad luck. Poor Peru. 🙁

    • Ryan
      June 30, 2011

      Don’t forget Adriano plays for Brazil though, so it isn’t just Dani repping the blaugrana over there!

      • Dani_el
        June 30, 2011

        How I forgot about Adriano! I really like him! Ithought he would play on the left..! I hope we dont have so many injuries for the world cup qualifications, brazil is next to peru, it would be great to go there on 2014, I also pledged that I have to see Messi some day live, I hopeh barça!

  9. Josep
    June 30, 2011

    Also Arsenal losing Cesc, Nasri and Clichy seems part of their business cycle, no?

    However they can’t lose Wenger. Can anyone imagine Wenger at PSG? My god, that’d be amazing..

    • blitzen
      June 30, 2011

      Wenger will be pleased. This gives him a ready-made excuse for why they won’t win anything next year, either. He is “rebuilding the squad.”

        • Noslehcimretep
          June 30, 2011

          yeah, three years in the future, just like the last 6 years now? x)

    • Blow-Grenade
      July 1, 2011

      Watched that. Thats an awesome link. Thanks.

  10. June 30, 2011

    Regarding watching the matches, Univision will be streaming *all* Copa America matches online at their website, for free (if in the US). Their coverage for the Gold Cup was excellent (good enough commentary, ESPN3-like quality) and I never had any problems. I’d advise that.

    As for who I’m rooting for, no one in particular. Copa America is weird for me, because I’d always root for all the teams in the tournament over pretty much any other team in the world. So I’m never really disappointed as to who wins.

    That being said, I do have some mild rooting interests, though.
    -A soft spot for the youngin’s from Mexico and Costa Rica, as the outsiders repping CONCACAF.
    -I always like Brazil, having spent much more time there than in any other country in the tourney. Despite their speaking a different language, I can relate to their style more than most other American countries.

    I always find myself supporting other countries against Argentina (I think my friends are a bad influence on that account 😛 ) but I wouldn’t be upset if they ended up winning the whole thing, if only for Messi. And they are, rightly, the favorites in this tourney.

  11. Lev
    June 30, 2011

    ¡¡¡VENEZUELA!!! pues sí, mamá, gracias por the shoutout!

    this year we have the least suckiest team in the history of Venezuelan football . I really hope we make it out of the group stages although our group is arguably the toughest one.

    IF Venezuela do not win the whole thing, I am rooting for La Pulga to bring la copa back to Argentina.

  12. blitzen
    June 30, 2011

    My roommate will be cheering for Brazil, as we live near Portugal Village and he does like a good street party.

    I was very impressed with Chile at the World Cup, so I will be rooting for them to do well.

    But I have to admit that I would be happy enough if Argentina win, if only for Messi and Mascherano. I’m not overly interested in this competition, so I will probably only catch a few of the games.

    • Noslehcimretep
      June 30, 2011

      Chile really won my heart at the World Cup as well, if they can keep it up without Bielsa and now with the extra attention on Sanchez to sweeten the deal I’ll be pulling for them.
      That being said, any opportunity for Messi to vindicate himself (if that’s what the Argentines are calling for) with the national team is one I’ll be getting behind as well.

  13. Humphrey Bogart
    June 30, 2011

    Argentina all the way because I had one of my best footballing experiences there. When I was in Buenos Aires some years ago we got tickets for a Boca Juniors game in the famous Bombonierea and dear me that were the most Adrenalin, Endorphin pumped up 120 minutes of my life: it started way before the game with singing, shouting and jumping, when Riquelme entered the pitch the whole thing exploded and when Boca equalized (after one of them was sent off) there was a mass eruption and everybody was huging everybody, it was unbelievable.

    Vamos Argentina, vamos a ganar

  14. Helge
    June 30, 2011

    I’ll wear my new Messi Argentina away jersey for every Argentina match (which I will have to watch via stream…) and the Argentina flag will be waved in my room during those matches, too 😀

    It will be a huge satisfaction if Argentina wins the Copa, because they’ve had such a long spell without any major title. And of course I want Messi to win it, for the people of Argentina.

    My biggest fear though is Neymar running riot with ease against the very poor defense of Argentina in the Copa final, thus crowning himself the new king of South America. I think I gotta vomit in that case :/

    • mom4
      June 30, 2011

      Yeah, the back line is poor. But fear not, they have to get by sMasche first!

  15. Ryan
    June 30, 2011

    I’ll definitely be rooting for Messi’s Argentina to win. I really wanted to see Japan to compete as well, but with them out my 2nd team is Mexico. (even if their online fans troll anything to do with the US national team…) Gio is just so much fun to watch, as is seeing someone other than Villa be offside so much. But seriously, Chicharito is pretty good. 😆

    • June 30, 2011

      Man, I seem to be leaving out huge details today! It’s the Mexican U-22 side, not the first team.

      • Ryan
        June 30, 2011

        Oh no, really? Well, there goes my 2nd team then. 😛

    • dennise
      June 30, 2011

      Thank you, Kari.

      Please, pay attention to scorers fees – most of them were above 20-25 million pounds – and today, due to inflation, etc it is close to 35 million( in real prices). Some were bingos, some were awful misses.

      In short, ten years ago FCB did not pay for scorers less than today – 30-40 something either for sanches or fabregas

      • June 30, 2011

        You’re very welcome. The prices are in Euro though, so that’s worth noting. Still, we paid 36m for Saviola only for him to join EE (after many loans) on a free transfer. I already knew about the free transfer thing but the 36m? Craziness. Although he was The Next Maradona when we bought him from River.

        • That Saviola transfer was indeed a shocker. The same goes for the the Overmars one that costed us 40 milllions! Those were the money from the figo transfer and there were really not that well spent. *sigh*

    • Dani_el
      June 30, 2011

      wow! how did you find that!!! I used to check out the ins and outs in history of barcelona fc wiki, too much work.. thanks!

      • June 30, 2011

        A friend said he got it off a Barca forum, but I don’t know which one he’s talking about. It looks like it’s still being updated, so whoever’s responsible is still around.

        • I have this as well I got it bookmarked like 4 years ago but I don’t remember the excact source. I think it was froma barca forum as well but unfortunately I don’t remeber either.
          He/she has made a mistake on the Ibra transfer though. It should be 20 mil more. Samu’s value is substrcated but not added. Laporta did indeed lost it during that transfer window… 🙁

  16. Para
    June 30, 2011

    Just so people who don’t subscribe to fourfourtwo know–the issue that’s just come out has a fairly large (I assume, because he’s on the cover) section on Guardiola, done at least in part by Graham Hunter. I haven’t had a chance to read it yet, so I can’t comment, but it’s out!

    • blitzen
      June 30, 2011

      I just subscribed, but it will be a while until that issue hits Canada. 🙁

  17. Ryan
    June 30, 2011

    It sounds like Di Maria is getting sent to the bench and Tevez will start in his place. Another reason to root for Argentina!

  18. yonono
    June 30, 2011

    Anyone notice the quarterfinal and semifinal draws? Assuming Argentina wins its group, its the only one that has no chance of facing a group winner in the quarters or semis! Sly dogs! (not that I’m complaining)

    I’d like to see Chile exercise some demons by beating Brazil (Brazil was the only team Chile didn’t beat in WC qualifying and then got knocked out by Brazil) and then losing in a tight match to Barca–I mean Argentina.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJKgjD1AX08
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l4HqMgtePg4&feature=related

    • June 30, 2011

      Yeah, it’s just like the Gold Cup: designed so it is highly unlikely that the two heavyweights meet before the final. Argentina or Brazil would have to place third in their group to meet before the final.

      It also means that the top 2 of Group C (supposed group of death: Uruguay, Chile, Mexico, Peru) would have to beat *both* Argentina and Brazil to win the Copa America. 😛

  19. BarcaGirl_Indo
    June 30, 2011

    I’ve never been a fan of Argentina NT,
    but I love Messi, a lot…

    and we know how much he want this tournament…
    so I’m supporting him, 100%…

    =====================

    that article made by Sid Lowe, I like it very much…
    like Josep said, Sid gets it right…

    =====================

    I’m wondering, will we hear something official today?
    it’s already Friday morning in my country… fun, fun, fun, fun…

    • Jnice
      June 30, 2011

      I’m wondering, will we hear something official today?

      I really don’t think so, but I could be wrong. There still seems to be a lot of loose ends to tie up.

      that article made by Sid Lowe, I like it very much…
      like Josep said, Sid gets it right…

      Finally he’s done some research on Thiago. Just last week he was saying Thiago isn’t that young because he’s 22.

    • June 30, 2011

      I have a (very bad) feeling it will be announced tomorrow. I don’t like it. 🙁 Pep should be the only one feeling things.

      On the otherhand, I just want the damned transfer to end. Sign him. Sign him and just end it already! I can’t take it anymore! Now that Thiago is guaranteed, I have (to) come to terms with this transfer. Do your worst, RoSELL. (Actually, please don’t. I don’t think I can take it. The shirt sale was bad enough.)

    • June 30, 2011

      I’m fairly sure that by the time I wake up tomorrow, one of the big two transfer (or)deals will be settled. July 1st, start of the fiscal year… I get the feeling that some of the deals have already been made and all that’s left is the signing. :S

      • Jnice
        June 30, 2011

        I think the Kiko deal may be announced tomorrow, but from the outside looking in, it seems that Udinese and Arsenal are still negotiating with us over little details and figures.

        We shall see.

      • BarcaGirl_Indo
        June 30, 2011

        yeah, seems like negotiation with Udinese and Arsenal still ongoing…
        but how can we know what’s happening there, just wait and see…

        Thiago’s renewal came out of nowhere,
        we didnt hear about it before, I think… (?) suddenly they announced it…
        just like Cesc and Sanchez, all the talks are coming from media, our board are pretty quiet about these, no?

        I’m quite sure we’ll know about Cesc future in the next few days…
        he needs to go back to London before 5th July if we fail to sign him…

        I don’t know about Sanchez, should be announced before Copa America IF there’s a deal…

  20. blitzen
    June 30, 2011

    They are showing the Women’s Canada/France game on CBC right now. I already know the score, so I’m trying to ignore it. 🙁

  21. can_we_go_Xalvies
    June 30, 2011

    I swear, if the headlines today or tomorrow come up with an Udinese or Arsenal representative saying again: “deal? what deal? we haven’t spoke with barcelona yet…”

    I won’t be able to handle it, I am tired of the stupid media roller coaster.

    I’m Cheering for Paraguay in the Copa as I was cheering for them during the WC, I hope Larissa Requelme will be there to cheer them on again too 😀 I’ll also be cheering for good football of course.

    • BarcaGirl_Indo
      June 30, 2011

      “deal? what deal? we haven’t spoke with barcelona yet…”

      😆

  22. June 30, 2011

    Argentina of course. Love how Ray is comparing Messi to Riquelme back in those days, and now…

  23. y2k156
    June 30, 2011

    Its Argentina all the way for me. I started watching football around 86 WC as a very young kid and since then Argentina has been my side. To be honest, as a fan, i support them with even more passion than i do Barcelona.

    And i do not like Brazil at all. I hope Argies defeat them. The scars from previous two finals are still there.

    I do not know how it will end. I shall hope it does well but as a fan i am always pessimistic. I know one thing though, i will go through a emotional rollercoster for next few weeks and i plan to enjoy all of it.

  24. Neel
    June 30, 2011

    Anyone has any idea if it being telecasted in India? Although I read in some places that Ten Action + is going to show it, the channels schedule does not show anything.

    • xavi
      June 30, 2011

      No theres going to be no live telecast in India… Really sad, except of course if you are a Bengali. Apparently a local Bengali News Channel is going to telecast it live. Maradonna effect I suppose, he visited there 2 years ago

      • Neel
        June 30, 2011

        I am a Bengali, but live in Bombay. Although I think the language won’t matter for anyone as long as the service provider provides that channel. I mean, the players are not going to play differently on a Bengali channel :D. I think I read the name of the channel as Kolkata channel. I will check it up today. Also, Messi and team is playing against Venezuela in Calcutta this september. I am so planning to go catch it up live in person.

        • privateeye
          July 1, 2011

          The Calcutta thing is a hoax as of now. Dont get ripped.

          Anyways no Copa America in India. Baaa

  25. June 30, 2011

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog/2011/jun/30/argentina-copa-america-brazil

    The horror prospect for Argentina is not merely that they don’t win, but that Brazil do, lifting the Copa for the fifth time in six attempts. (The possibility of them beating Argentina in the final is almost too horrifying for the hosts to contemplate; if that did happen in the first game at the Monumental after River’s relegation, there would have to be some sort of exorcism before the stadium could be used again).

    :mrgreen:

    I cried tears of joy at that Julio Baptista goal in 2007… I was so certain that Argentina was going to steamroll them in Venezuela.

    • barca96
      June 30, 2011

      I always felt that Argentina feels a sort of inferiority complex when playing against Brazil. Always get nervous and lose the plot. It’s like they fear the Brazilians.

  26. ak
    June 30, 2011

    Hah, the ref pushing messi to get back to his half. Wonder if anyone will have the guts to do it now.

  27. Larm
    June 30, 2011

    From the last article

    “Because this is real life, not Football Manager? Because he couldn’t integrate fully with the team and couldn’t handle Messi being the undisputed star? Because the false 9 position is clearly where Messi plays best and why would Pep want to change that”
    -Blitzen (concerning bring back ibra)

    I’m sorry i dont buy it. At what point did he exhibit not trying for the team? he was most likely off sides less the Villa. Ibra had 9 Assists and 23 goals for us while villa had 34 goals and 6 assists in all competitions. Considering that Ibra said he was played out of position and liked to roam (ALA false 9) i think he would do better. Remember When it was Henry Eto’o and Messi (from left to right) it took at two players per forward to mark them out. At this point i would argue Villa is better than Henry in his prime on the left, Messi is better than Pedro on the right, and Ibra would be better than messi in the center if messi and villa was lined up on both sides of him.

    as for the jab at football manager, i dont play that game, i have no idea how it works. All i wanna say, if we are a team that is not very deep, why not take advantage of our vast talents at hand instead of spending shit-tons of money on a player with ONE! good season and more hype than a cheerleader squad.

    according the various sources we only have 40 or million to spend on players, yet people say 50 for Cesc, 40 for sanchez plus a defender or two. I am no mathematician but that adds up to more than 40ish.

    Also i get back to the point of managing personal, when did ibra start talking shit? after he left? who doesnt say bad things about former employers? Also look at what he said…more or less that he couldnt talk to pep about issues that he had. Is that talking bad about the team or merely just stating the facts?

    I say give him another chance, kinda like how we gave Valdez and Abidal and Busquets multiple chances until they worked out for his. Hell at least we know he will produce more than pedro who is still pretty hit or miss.

    • Ryan
      July 1, 2011

      Ibra didn’t just burn bridges with Barca, he went back and burned those ashes just to be sure! From deriding Pep as a “philosopher” to saying Pep was afraid of him and would leave any room Ibra entered, to randomly kicking players in AC Milan this past year, Ibra’s attitude really does not lend well to Barcelona’s controlled, measured, and team-oriented philosophy.

      And let’s not forget that Pedro has shown up massively in the big games. Sure he had a goal drought, but he scored both in the CL semi-final and final. I’ll take that over the 6 or 7 games in a row that Ibra scored any day!

    • BarcaGirl_Indo
      July 1, 2011

      Also i get back to the point of managing personal, when did ibra start talking shit? after he left? who doesnt say bad things about former employers?

      umm… I can tell you names : Eto’o, Yaya, Gudjohnsen, Thiery Henry, and so on…
      did they talk s*** about Pep? cant remember that…
      Ibra didnt just talk about what happened, he also insulted Pep in front of public, more than once…

      Hell at least we know he will produce more than pedro who is still pretty hit or miss.

      Hell, how you know that for sure?

      I don’t know if you follow Ibra in AC Milan or not…
      he did awesome, very awesome in the first half of the season…
      by the end of the season he played bad, rarely scored goals,get frustrated, and did unnecessary Ninja kicks to the opponents and cursed the referee…

      that guy Pedro gave us goals in Spanich Super Cup, European Super Cup, WCC final, UCL semifinal and final… I’m happy to have Pedro…

    • blitzen
      July 1, 2011

      Ibra would be better than messi in the center if messi and villa was lined up on both sides of him.

      No. No, he wouldn’t.

  28. can_we_go_Xalvies
    July 1, 2011

    Another reason why we loaned Ibra out to Milan is so that we won’t have to pat for his massive wages. If Sanchez and Cesc were to be signed they would take a substantial pay cut.

    You cannot put Ibra and Villa side by side and expect to make justifiable arguments on which player is better for our team. Firstly both players featured in different positions at Barcelona. Unfortunately every since the famous 2-6 victory Messi happened to convince Pep and everyone else that he is more effective under a false 9 position than his original RW poistion. Unfortunately also, Ibra functions best ONLY in the center of the forward positions, with Ibra’s inability to function on either wing effectively it was inevitable that we had to make the signing of Villa happen. Ibra wasn’t going to accept a secondary role behind Messi, so we had to let him go.

    Villa on the other hand can almost equally play effectively on either flank, the same thing with Pedro. Villa also improved very quickly on his defensive work, something Henry suffered a lot trying to adjust too. If you go back and watch Villa in any game in the latter part of last season you would notice how well he positions himself between the opponent (who has the ball) and you could see how well he covers the passing lanes. Villa at the time was a better fit than Ibra and still is.

    • July 1, 2011

      Why must it always be one over the other? Villa doesn’t have superhuman powers. His goal drought was the same as Ibrahimovic’s, the number of goals was almost identical, and as for who had the number of bigger goals, you’d probably find a certain cranky Swede leading that tally.

      As for Ibrahimovic being ineffective on the wing, none of our strikers were any great shakes on the wing, including Villa. You can recall some delightful moves and assists to Messi from Ibrahimovic on the wing …. both wings.

      And Henry was a better defender than Villa. He tracked forward and back better, because he had a lot more pace than Villa.

      They were three different players, and each brought different skill sets to the club. Let’s leave it at that. Because for every “Villa did this” attribute, it would be easy to counter with an “Henry did that,” or “Ibrahimovic did this” counter, which leads to an endless argument.

      Ibrahimovic was an ass. Of that there is no doubt. But just because Villa is classier and gets along better with his teammates doesn’t make him a magical player. He’s just a different player.

      Ibrahimovic: 21 goals, 9 assists
      Villa: 23 goals, 7 assists

      Both scored 4 goals for us in Champions League, by the by. We could get into balls lost and won, shots vs goals, etc, etc, but the fact of the matter is simply that they were different players who worked in different ways for the club.

      • can_we_go_Xalvies
        July 1, 2011

        ofcourse Villa had struggles and weaknesses, he often dissapeared in games and he lost the ball very often. Goals and assists mean nothing to Pep, if that was the case then Eto’o would still be playing in the team.

        In my opinion however, putting attitude and goal tallies aside, Villa catered a lot better to his teammates. I often felt that Pedro naturally should play on the Right wing more often, because I feel he is more effective there. This left Villa for the LW role, eventhough he sturggled a lot with performances, he still managed to contribute maybe not as effective as Henry, Henry also took a long time to adjust to that role, and he even struggled to stay motivated at some points.

  29. July 1, 2011

    Ok does anyone absolutly know with 100% accuracy if and where on american tv the Argentina game is tomorrow. It just seems weird that the opening game of the event, featuring the home team & Messi would not be on T.V (Univision)…. As I stated above, it looks like the first game on TV is Sunday (Costa Rica v Columbia). Also, didn’t gol tv carry the Copa America in 07′, did they lose the contract… that sucks cause I wanna hear Ray Ray announcing an Argentina v Brazil?

    • mom4
      July 1, 2011

      WMDOCA—it’s some Spanish speaking HD channel waaaaaaay up in the numbers (500s) from my cable provider. 8:30 EST (confirmed by my DVR)

    • Neel
      July 1, 2011

      Is the Raymond in ‘Everybody loves Raymond’ inspired by this gentleman “Ray Ray”?

      • mom4
        July 1, 2011

        Is the Raymond in ‘Everybody loves Raymond’ inspired by this gentleman “Ray Ray”?

        No.

        Ray Hudson, affectionately known here as Ray Ray, is a commentator on GOLTV (the English version) here in the US. The man comes up with the most brilliant/funny/insane metaphors/analogies/similes. He is a committed fan of the beautiful game, loves to see it played well, and not afraid to show his enthusiasm. My favorite quote? “He needs help like a fish needs a bicycle”. We love Ray because he loves footy!

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sIivieqzLWs

        some quotes below just from the 5-0 clasico, credit to the offside:
        -On Lionel Messi – “Like a squirrel on a telegraph wire.”
        -On Lionel – “He could follow you into a revolving door and he’d still come out first.”
        -On Xavi – “Cool as Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock.”
        -On Xavi – “Old chameleon eyes with that kaleidoscope vision.”
        -“Khedira, I couldn’t find him with a spotlight either.”
        -On the first half skirmish – “Then Valdes comes out and spits the verbals like Mussolini at the balcony”
        -“David Villa absolutely makes Sergio Ramos his little lollipop”
        -“this is a goal of orgiastic proportions”
        -“Real Madrid’s defense stretched out like spandex on Miami beach”
        -On Barca’s fourth – “The precise pass that opens up the white shirts like a fresh fish.”
        -On Villa – “He’s got fire in him. He’s like a Peregrine falcon, that guy.”

    • July 1, 2011

      Try Telefutura. See my response to your earlier comment above.

  30. BarcaGirl_Indo
    July 1, 2011

    http://www.as.com/futbol/articulo/cesc-alexis-seran-cules-rosell/20110701dasdaiftb_35/Tes

    Por motivos de agenda y sabedor de que le quedan muchas cosas por cerrar antes de tomarse las vacaciones a finales de la próxima semana, el presidente azulgrana tiene programado regresar a Barcelona el próximo martes. Será entonces cuando el club anuncie los fichajes de Cesc Fàbregas y de Alexis Sánchez, dos futbolistas por los que hace mucho tiempo que está peleando el club catalán y que son petición expresa de Guardiola.

    so according to AS (bad source, I know), Rosell is at Argentina for Copa America right now, and will be back on Tuesday…
    if that’s true, maybe we wont hear anything official from the club until Rosell come back to Barcelona?

    I just found out one thing, if you wrote “el presidente azulgrana” in google translate and click translate into English, you will get –> “LAPORTA”… 😀

    • barca96
      July 1, 2011

      Haha I got it too.
      What on earth is wrong with Google Translate??
      So it’s basically not a translation. They just use the word, in this case = “el presidente azulgrana” and checked the last time it was use in which case it’s Laporta when he still was the president.

    • BarcaGirl_Indo
      July 1, 2011

      even google dislike Rosell and want Laporta back… 😆

  31. July 1, 2011

    Can anyone confirm Gale Etock signed w/ Chelsea…Was it a transfer. do we get$ for him. How big of a loss is it fr us?

    • Jnice
      July 1, 2011

      Yeah, he’s signing on a 4 year deal. We will receive some sort of compensation. Probably similar to what Arsenal is giving us for Toral and Bellerin. Not a big loss. He hasn’t developed like people had hoped and didn’t play much last season.

    • July 3, 2011

      Barcelona gets compensation and part of the money goes to the Samuel Eto’o foundation. I agree he’s not a big loss. He was unstoppable in infantiles, but his development stalled in juveniles. Dongou has surpassed him now, that’s the player to watch.

  32. Eklavya
    July 1, 2011

    I don’t I’ll get the time to watch..

    GO MESSI.

  33. xavi
    July 1, 2011

    I just signed for twitter… If some body is kind enough to suggest me whom to follow in here, I’d be thankful 🙂

    • BarcaGirl_Indo
      July 1, 2011

      fcbfootballblog, kevvwill, jnicee17, jawsytown, jamgootmeatgood, nanda59, eklavya_FCB, Diego_Silva3, sheenasidhu, StephenVanH, lukeisamazing, callmekrishmael…

      that’s some of our fellas here…

  34. Olufestus
    July 1, 2011

    Jamgoodmeatgood…what a twitter name…lol

  35. Whatever
    July 1, 2011

    Jose Angel signed for Roma? Is it true?

    Jose Angel (Sporting): “Barcelona were interested too, but Roma are the club that showed most interest in signing me.” [teleradiostereo] / via @barcastuff

  36. urfness
    July 1, 2011

    been supporting argentina since 1998.. see no reason to change now, esp with masch and messi..

  37. Josep
    July 1, 2011

    looks like we shit the bed on the Cote deal, he’ll probably be announced as a Roma player today.

    I like Roma, starting.. last month. 😀 But I still wanted Barca to land this kid.

    • barca96
      July 1, 2011

      Are you talking about Jose Angel?
      If yes, it must’ve been because Pep wasn’t pushing hard enough.

      I honestly don’t think Spanish players ( Agel and Bojan inc.) should go to Seria A. They just don’t fit Seria A’s style.

      • Para
        July 1, 2011

        Have many players crossed over? (I’m not saying they haven’t, I’m genuinely asking). And I mean players who start their careers here and then go to Italy, not the likes of Cannavaro, etc.

        Regardless of whether Guardiola was pushing hard enough or not, if Roma bid higher (which it certainly sounds like it did), then fair enough. I read somewhere (on twitter?) that he turned down a deal to Fiorentina this winter, saying that he didn’t feel ready for a move to Italy, so it may be that Luis Enrique being at Roma is what really made a difference.

        • blitzen
          July 1, 2011

          Guardiola played for Roma, and didn’t have a great time there.

          • Para
            July 1, 2011

            Sorry, I should have said other than Guardiola. He played for Brescia and Roma, right? I remember seeing a piece on him where another footballer (midfielder at Brescia as well?) was saying how they weren’t used to seeing the ball just sail past them all the time.

          • July 3, 2011

            Yeah, Capello bought Pep because he wanted to implement a passing game at Roma and after losing one match he gave up on the idea and went back to playing boring counter attacking football. Mendieta’s career also took a nosedive when he went from Valencia to Lazio.

    • mom4
      July 1, 2011

      “I like Roma, starting.. last month”

      I know what you mean. I might find myself watching (gasp!) a few(probably very few) Seria A games next season. Only Roma though!

      • beeeef
        July 1, 2011

        I love Serie A lol

        There’s no single team I enjoy watching more than Barcelona, but the Italian league is probably my favorite. There have been some great teams and players over the years.

        Brace yourself if you plan on following Roma though. A team/city with a big heart, but huge underachievers.

  38. July 1, 2011

    Hard to believe that anyone thought these were real, but a blogger over at ESPNSoccernet did (quotes from Dirty Tackle):

    A great spoof, which had us going, from Dirty Tackle, that postulated that even the inconvenience of death would not prevent Lionel Messi from heaping misery upon arch-rivals Real Madrid.

    The Barcelona star was recently linked with a big money move to Madrid but when asked about the rumours Messi dismissed them with a new found panache…

    “Even when I eventually pass on, I will only play ghost football at Barcelona,” Messi never told reporters at Argentina’s Copa America training camp. “I am happy there. No amount of spirit money will tempt me.”

    “Real can offer whatever they want, but I will not go. My ghost will play for Barcelona forever. Maybe it will fly around in the clouds for fun sometimes, but it will never scare people and it will never play for another club.”

    Messi interviews would be far more interesting if he really spoke in metaphysical metaphors.

  39. Lev
    July 1, 2011

    btw it is very weird that only the final is played in BA. I’d be pretty pissed off if I lived in the capital and I can only go to 1 game.

  40. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    And to whoever was asking in the last thread, both Thiago and Fontas are included in the official 2011-2012 squad list on the FCB website. Although they haven’t bothered to update their bios yet. Still, that looks pretty official to me.

  41. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    Just want to point out that with the promotion of Thiago and Fontas, that makes twelve of our first team who have come from La Masia. (If you still count Bojan and Jeffren, and I do since they are still listed in the official squad list and nothing official has been announced.) Even if you take away those two, that is still 10 canteranos. Eleven if you count the likely addition of Fabregas.

    That is…astonishing. Unbelievable, even, in this modern age of international stars.

    Compare that to Madrid’s…one.

    • Para
      July 1, 2011

      That is pretty amazing.

      (But to be fair to RM, if we count Fabregas, do we not have to allow them to count Arbeloa and Granero?)

      • FalseNine
        July 1, 2011

        And now Callejón.

        Essential point still stands though. 🙂

        Even more amazing than the number of youth products on the first team is the number in the starting XI, eight out of eleven, all but the full backs and one forward. Not only does Barça produce an inordinate number of their own players, they produce an even higher percentage of their best players. How many world-class teams have produced eight of their first-choice starters?

        • blitzen
          July 1, 2011

          Doh! Forgot Callejon too. Or as I will refer to him henceforth, Jedward Benchwarmer.

          • Para
            July 1, 2011

            Seriously, what is with the hair? Am also pleased that people in Canada have been subjected to Jedward. Perhaps if the suffering is widespread it will be diluted.

          • blitzen
            July 1, 2011

            No I actually had to google Jedward when Sid Lowe kept calling him that> I have been spared from actually listening to the music.

        • dennise
          July 1, 2011

          According to statistics – it is huge abnormality – before 2004-5 FCB promoted rarely players and they were quickly forgotten.

          even now – only one player usually remains to mother team from yearly B team output:

          2004: Messi

          2007 Bojan and Pedro

          2008 Busquets

          2010 – Thiago (??)

          • Para
            July 1, 2011

            That’s why it’s so amazing, right? Because it’s ‘abnormal’. 🙂

          • Ryan
            July 1, 2011

            One canterano every year or two is fine by me.

      • blitzen
        July 1, 2011

        I knew I was forgetting someone! OK, I’ll give you Arbeloa…but I am pretty sure El Pirata is on the way out. So 3, conditionally.

        • Para
          July 1, 2011

          Do you reckon he’s on his way out? He did feature a bit more towards the end of the season (I think- I could easily be wrong), but I suppose with their purchases someone in the mid has to go.

          Are there squad limits for La Liga?

          • blitzen
            July 1, 2011

            He is competing with Ozil, Khedira and now Sahin for his position. And Altintop as well, once he recuperates. I don’t think Mou puts any faith in him and he will be sold.

        • nzm
          July 1, 2011

          Could be correct there, Blitzen, but I reckon the main reason that Arbeloa will hang in there is that he’s one of the RM players in the Spanish Team – and I’m not sure that RM would be too happy about having one less NT player in the squad. Pride and all that!

          • blitzen
            July 1, 2011

            I didn’t say Arbeloa was on his way out, I said Granero (El Pirata) was.

          • nzm
            July 1, 2011

            And next time, I’ll read it properly! Sorry!

  42. July 1, 2011

    For us Canadians, The Score comes through! ….But they’re playing the game at 10pm EST rather than 8:45pm according to their schedule. 😕 Stupid WWE Friday Night Smackdown. 😡

    Rest of the days are on the normal schedule though. 8) YEAH.

    • Jnice
      July 1, 2011

      Kari has a secret twitter account! (just kidding)

      Fantastic piece by Graham. Really fascinating.

      • Jnice
        July 1, 2011

        Credit to @fcblive and @shnmrdy, I think.

      • July 1, 2011

        I luuuuuv it. If I had a Twitter account, I’d be tweeting him so much praise. Awesomeness.

      • Para
        July 1, 2011

        Agreed. I can’t wait to read his book.

    • Ryan
      July 1, 2011

      Thanks for posting this, it was a great read!

  43. Jnice
    July 1, 2011

    I figured nothing major would happen today….

    • Vj
      July 1, 2011

      Puyol can run without discomfort now. That’s good enough for me..

  44. July 1, 2011

    The biggest question: stream the game live, or wait until 10pm to watch on TV? Decisions, decisions…

    (You can stream it here on YouTube or find a stream at myp2p.eu.livefootball)

  45. July 1, 2011

    Argentinean national anthem is being sung.

    Crowd sings along the tune… no cheering, just singing.

    Ends on a high, crowd shouts in unison.

    Time to get Messi.

  46. Miguel
    July 1, 2011

    I love me some Cuchu, but I’d like to see Pastore at some point in this game. And why no Aguero? Lavezzi es un barato.

  47. culegirl3
    July 1, 2011

    For all the folks who are in Cali..they’re showing the match on Telefutura. P.S. Someone give Tevez a shirt that fits!

    • Miguel
      July 1, 2011

      And what’s up with his hair?

      I actually like Hugo Sanchez’s commentary. Deal with it, cules.

      • culegirl3
        July 1, 2011

        his hair looks strange no matter what style he sports! At least he isnt wearing those ridiculous headbands that he’s sported in the past. As far as Hugo Sanchez…mejor no digo nada 😀 lol

  48. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    That Bolivian #9 is gorgeous. Can we sign him?

        • July 1, 2011

          His hair is similar to Banega’s. Not sure how I feel about that.

          Argentina needs to get a goal. Bad. Crowd’s getting angsty.

  49. Miguel
    July 1, 2011

    Nice pass, Messi. Aguero woulda finished that. Just saying.

  50. July 1, 2011

    his is weird, someone help lol. Regardless of which stream I use, both start great for 15 min, then start to lag. I switch over to the other stream, and its fine for 15 min??/

    • blitzen
      July 1, 2011

      The Youtube feed slowed my computer down horribly, I had to shut it down.

  51. beeeef
    July 1, 2011

    Hopefully Batista will get a clue and play Pastore finally. Put him in for Cambiasso.

  52. Humphrey Bogart
    July 1, 2011

    Messi is really doing everything here. It is like the other offensive players are hinding behind his back

    • blitzen
      July 1, 2011

      Tevez is working pretty darn hard as well.

      • Humphrey Bogart
        July 1, 2011

        But he did miss this glorious chance that Messi did give him on a plate: It just makes me sick that Messi is working his socks off for this teams, creates chances for others to miss and if Argentina will f** this up you can bet who they will blame for that one, surely not Tevez, the local hero, but Messi again who “does not give his all for his homecountry”

        • blitzen
          July 1, 2011

          Even Messi misses a chance now and then.

  53. skyislm
    July 1, 2011

    Copa America available in India in NEO Sports tv channel. Watching the Argentina vs Bolivia now. Go Messi!!! Yaaay!!!

  54. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    LOL> Al Jazeera HT commentator just said RM is planning to lodge a 45M bid for Fabregas. As if he would agree to go there.

    • Miguel
      July 1, 2011

      Aguero’s trickery -as they say- should be enough to turn this game. Don’t know if we’ll see any Pastore, though.

  55. y2k156
    July 1, 2011

    What an half. After all the hype, reality comes back to bite again. Bolivia have played well and in fact, i would not be surprised if they score first.

    As for argentina, they lack any identity. I would not mind the performance too much if this was stepping stone to something but it seems that Batista only speaks about Barcelona and does not follow it. Quite a few things are wrong with Argentina. The GK does not inspire any confidence. The defense is so aware of of its lack of pace that they prefer to stay back so there cannot be a pressing game.

    As for Messi, watching this match makes it clear how much work Pedro and Villa put in so that Messi can do his thing. Tevez and Lavezzi do not put in effort that is even comparable.

    In addition, the entire team seems too interested to play with ball. Nobody seems too bothered with space and getting in positions or making runs. Barcelona thrives on space and continuous movement. Argentina are simply not built that way and Batista is not going to change it in few days.

    When Messi has to come back to own half for meaningful possession, he is already so far removed from danger zone that he is no way as effective. He did have a few good runs and passes.

    I see three possibilities. If batista wants 4-3-3, he has to have conviction to just play that way. I already feel that in that formation, Argentina are not going to win anything in this copa. Maybe even will have trouble for next year or two. But having a philosophy was never easy.

    If Batista wants success, he has two options in my view. Either move Messi to midfield and use other attackers. Or go 4-5-1 with Messi as single striker and someone like Pastore to feed him. It will be much uglier but much more effective.

    What i am afraid is that Batista will not do anything and Argentina will lurch from one place to another. No wonder Messi is getting frustrated.

  56. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    Dive Maria on. Hate to say it, but that might be the right choice.

    • Miguel
      July 1, 2011

      For el Cuchu Cambiasso.

      What the fuck just happened there?

      Bolivia goal? Set piece?

      • July 1, 2011

        Can’t say they haven’t earned it.

        Damn. And if they lose, Messi gets the blame. 😡

        • Humphrey Bogart
          July 1, 2011

          That is what I fear most, It is so convenient for everybody, they can just blame everything on Leo, it is so injust

        • Miguel
          July 1, 2011

          And he’s in Argentina…ya know. The place he never played club football.

  57. Humphrey Bogart
    July 1, 2011

    Problem is that their defence is so shaky that Batista needs 2 DM for at least a minimum of security therefore they have nobody with creativity in midfield apart from some sparks from Banega and therefore Messi has to drop deep all the time to least get anything going.

    Oh how I miss the days of Ayala

  58. Helge
    July 1, 2011

    omg… and of all people, Di Maria is coming on.

    Why does it always have to be so frustrating to watch Argentina in the big tournaments ???

  59. beeeef
    July 1, 2011

    Suddenly things get interesting. Thank god.

    • July 1, 2011

      My only hope is that it’ll give the Argentines not named Messi a good kick in the arse

      DiveMaria Dive Count (DMDC): 2

      • beeeef
        July 1, 2011

        Exactly. First half was kind of boring.

  60. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    Hate to say it, but if Milito was faster that wouldn’t have happened. 🙁

    • culegirl3
      July 1, 2011

      He’ll never be faster. After having knee injuries he’s never been and same
      And probably never will be IMO

  61. July 1, 2011

    waaaah, i didn’t know it’s live on my tv…just in time to see that bolivia goal! that was crazyyyyy……waaaah

  62. July 1, 2011

    Maybe Argentina will pull a Spain: lose the first match then go on to win the whole shebang.

    • Humphrey Bogart
      July 1, 2011

      Not with this excuse of a defence, Spain had at least Casillas and P&P

      • July 1, 2011

        Stop poking logic sized holes into my reasoning.

        #*@()#*$*# it Lavezzi. WTF was that?!

  63. July 1, 2011

    Get Lavezzi off the pitch. Now, before he gets a red. #bringonKun

    • Miguel
      July 1, 2011

      Lavezzi’s crosses are worse than Dani’s. Waaah.

  64. July 1, 2011

    Prediction time: DiveMaria will dive to get a crucial freekick or penalty depending on scoreline. Messi will do all the work, hit the post and Higuian one of Tevez or Lavezzi will tap it in.

  65. July 1, 2011

    “Lionel Messi, so often an under performer for the national team, now’s his time to step up” — my commentator.

    Kindly shut the **** up. Are you even watching this game?

    GET ‘EM LEO.

  66. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    Why don’t they put Pedro!! in? oh, wait…

    • July 1, 2011

      Problem 1 – The forwards are more interested in being the hero than making space for others to exploit.

      Problem 2 – The backline

      Problem 3 – Messi has to come too deep to get the ball

      Ohhhh, Argie fk. Give it to Messi!

    • blitzen
      July 1, 2011

      OK I just had a tequila shot. I don’t know if that will work for Argentina like it does for Barça, but I also ate a lot of BBQ meat today, and that should count for something.

  67. Dani_el
    July 1, 2011

    I dont like Divemaria at all, he doesnt pass the ball as he should..!

  68. beeeef
    July 1, 2011

    I love comic goalkeepers like Romero.

  69. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    NO! IT was my tequila shot that did it! Now Imma have another!

  70. Miguel
    July 1, 2011

    I’m pretty sure I called it first. 😉

    Argentina’s crowd finally getting into it.

  71. July 1, 2011

    Goddammit. What a dive. GTFO DiveMaria.

    Kun’s going to work. I called it ages ago. 8)

  72. Helge
    July 1, 2011

    Di Maria should’ve been 2-1.

    Aguero HAS to start the next matches. And Dive Maria sucks, apart from the cross before the goal…

  73. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    Argentina could sure use a Dani Alves-type.

  74. beeeef
    July 1, 2011

    I’m hoping to see a winner from one side in the last ten minutes.

  75. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    Messi has been a lot quieter this half.

  76. Miguel
    July 1, 2011

    Great play by Bolivia. Argentina should’ve been punished there.

    • July 1, 2011

      I don’t say this often, especially when it’s the other team that does it but that play was just sexy. Should’ve scored.

  77. Dani_el
    July 1, 2011

    How many balls has dive maria lost? come on! that dude is awful, I know he got an assist, but really..he takes too long with the ball, and he doesnt have messi’s or kun’s talent to base that fact..

        • Dani_el
          July 1, 2011

          And if they would play a 4-2-3-1 as spain? with masche and cambiasso as defensive midfielders, kun messi tevez, and higuain as a big 9 to set both opossing central defenders? messi would be the play maker, argentina just cant play like barça, thats way too difficult, they have extraodrinary “automatismos”, as Julio Cesar Uribe (peruvian ex football player and now commentator) said: Barça is the ideal way of playing

          • July 1, 2011

            They need a link between the attack and defense. I’d have a midfield of Pastore, Mascherano and Banega. Messi dropping off a forward line of Aguero – Higuain.

  78. July 1, 2011

    Well, all things considered, I’ll take a 1-1.

    If Kun doesn’t start the next game…

    • can_we_go_Xalvies
      July 1, 2011

      Now start the Media onslaught on Messi…

      • July 1, 2011

        ah, crazy… it’s not his fault if his team has bad defense, while others just dive, can’t even pass or can’t even hold on to the ball for more than 2 seconds…

  79. blitzen
    July 1, 2011

    Commentator says “They did not play as a team”. Exactly.

      • July 1, 2011

        Aaaaaaand just like that, his opinion goes from 0 to somewhere in the negatives on the Things That Matter scale.

      • BarcaGirl_Indo
        July 1, 2011

        who doesn’t? after that own goal, I told my friend,

        “just wait until people blame Messi for that own goal…it’s all Messi’s fault”

  80. July 1, 2011

    1-1 FT

    Kun gives Argentina the draw with a sah-weet volley after a Burdisso chestdown.

  81. Justin
    July 1, 2011

    thoughts on the game

    1. Arg needs to have people around messi who can create, at the start it was all messi and some effective midfielders and finishers.

    2. This means aguero needs to start, as does possibly pastore in midfield.

    3. I would play a 4-3-3 with messi at the false 9, pastore in midfield (with banega and amsch) and tevez wide left and aguero wide right

    • Justin
      July 1, 2011

      to elaborate

      their defense is atrocious, this means that tehy need to be deadly upfront, with messi and a defensive midfield (as well as tevez and lavezzi who are not very creative) they will struggle to score enough to make up for their terrible backline

      • July 1, 2011

        Oh no, all Argentina need is for Messi to step up. Him playing his, Xavi and Iniesta’s roles aren’t enough. He needs to play LB, CB, RB too. Add GK to that, since it’s all his fault goals are scored against his team.

        /sarcasm.

        • blitzen
          July 1, 2011

          But then they will say “Messi always plays on his own, not with the team.” :roll:

          • Justin
            July 1, 2011

            O my bad i forgot that messi was the one spraying crosses into the stands :), or messi was the one missing open nets,

            it’s amazing that anyone could think that was messi’s fault, he was surrounded all night

  82. BarcaGirl_Indo
    July 1, 2011

    God, I love Kun Aguero… he MUST NOT go to Evil Empire… just don’t…

  83. July 1, 2011

    Games like these are why I love the Copa America. One of the least talented teams in the tournament takes on the hosts Argentina “tu a tu” and scores a cheeky goal from a corner. And Argentina responds by bringing in striker Kun freakin’ Aguero from the bench, who scores an absolutely marvelous goal to tie it up. And even toward the end, either of the team’s could have walked away with the three points.

    Still, decent results for both teams. Argentina doesn’t start off the tournament in a hole, and Bolivia gets a crucial point which might end up being the *only* point anyone else gets from Argentina in this group.

    • July 1, 2011

      Also, if you see someone placing much blame on Messi for this result, relax. That’s a clue that lets you know they didn’t even watch the match. 😛

      • Jnice
        July 1, 2011

        Lol, fans interviewed after the match blamed Messi. Someone called Mascherano a disaster, too.

        • July 1, 2011

          Messi is not a magician.

          I wouldn’t get stressed out over this yet. Important thing to remember is that come the end of the tournament, Messi will be judged on one thing alone: whether Argentina won the Copa America or not. The probability of that happening is no lesser today than it was yesterday. What comments come tomorrow won’t matter in a month.

  84. y2k156
    July 1, 2011

    Last 20 minutes were interesting. Argentina looked quite good going forward and were aweful at the back. Aguero is really a good player. I do not hope to see Lavezzi again in this tournament. Whenever i have seen him play, he has pulled some nice moves but never enough to merit start over Aguero or even Higuain.

    I agree with someone from above that Argentina do need two def mid’s as their defense is so bad. Two other things that were really jarring me during match were quality of passing and worthless shooting. Quite a few Argie players were unable to even pass directly to their team mates. Guess passing is not as easy as Barca make it to be:). And DiMaria, Tevez and Lavezzi were all guilty of trying to take too many low percentage or simply hopeful shots. And i remember some blaming messi for some shots.

    I think Argentina should go with 4-2-3-1 with front 4 being, Tevez, Messi, Aguero and Higuain. If Argies are going to win this, they have to do it by scoring more than opposition. They do not look likely to win too many matches 1-0.

    I do not know if i should be happy or sad that Argentina drew with Equador and i am feeling relieved.

      • y2k156
        July 1, 2011

        Oh Shucks. It should be Bolivia. Guess the Ouzo from last night is still in the system:).

  85. BarcaGirl_Indo
    July 1, 2011

    Important thing to remember is that come the end of the tournament, Messi will be judged on one thing alone: whether Argentina won the Copa America or not.

    true, Jose… it doesn’t matter if Argentina make 3 own goals in one game, or Ms. Maria keep shooting the ball to nowhere…
    if Argentina lose, that’s because Messi never show up when he wears Argentina shirt… end of story…

  86. July 2, 2011

    Batista has such little confidence in his backline that he has elected to turn midfield into a completely defensive zone.

    He is essentially reducing the attack to three players and expecting Messi to make up for all of these deficiencies in both midfield and across a front line that is isolated.

    What’s really remarkable about all of this – is that Batista has turned Argentina into a kind broken formation. This is what happened under Maradona. Argentina’s formation is broken in a different way – but it’s still broken.

    There is no link through midfield to the front line.

    This is no way to structure a team. In trying so hard to make up for the team’s weakness Batista is diminishing it’s greatest strength. In turn Argentina play in a style where they aren’t outstanding at anything.

    Their football is just muddled. It’s disjointed and it is very unclear is it can work.

    And it seems like Batista has completely caved to public opinion with regards to not only suddenly having Tevez back on the team – but also with playing him.

    Long ago Batista should have put this team on the footing which could have given it the best chance to win a world cup. And the way to do that was to actually take a risk and play Pastore behind Messi and play Kun alongside of Messi.

    Instead he has played it extremely conservatively. And it’s in the midfield where he really sucked the life out of the team. The issues actually goes past Pastore alone.

    • Humphrey Bogart
      July 2, 2011

      So it is just a question of which risk you take: playing to your weaknesses with 2 DMs or playing to your strenghtes with your offensive fire power. The irony is that when he took a bigger risk by taking Cambiasso out (even if it not was for Pastore) they conceded straight away one of the most stupidst goals I have ever seen,

      Anyway I hope that Juan Brau is with Leo, he really needs support here as we all know that it will not be Banegas fault for this own goal nor Lavezzi/Tevez for missing chances and stupid crosses nor Dive Marias for loosing the ball all the time, it is of course all Leos fault

      • July 2, 2011

        Argentina didnt play with two DM anyways. Cambiasso was exercising a role that Pastore can do 10 times better. Before the match, I had a discussion with Zonalmarking on twitter insuring the need to play Pastore instead of Cambiasso. He wasnt that excited about the choice for the same reason I guess Batista had: Settling to what’s obvious.

        I think it is more about keeping things on the safe side by picking the default choice of players. Starting Patore ahead of Cambiasso need courage, which is not the common trend between national coaches. Pastore keeps Messi closer to the opponent’s box and link with him perfectly. In such combination the front line used in the game could have worked better. Or else, use Messi as a 10 and start Aguero and Tevez/Hiquain in front. Horses for courses. Most importantly, forget about the “playing like Barcelona” obsession.

        And the defense…Don’t get me started…

  87. According to Elmundo now our offer for Cesc is 29+6
    and for Sanchez 26+11. For the wildness of the market I’m ok with these prices as long as the variables are not “he plays at least 2 games” or smth…
    lets see what is going to happen in the end…but from how I see it only negotiators know what is going on!

    • Jnice
      July 2, 2011

      If that’s our true offer for Cesc, I seriously doubt Arsenal will accept.

      As for Sanchez, I have no guesses on that one.

  88. mom4
    July 2, 2011

    Got around to watching last night’s game after work.
    What the hell heck is Lavezzi doing on the squad much less starting!
    Teves, Messi, El Kun
    That is all!

    No, that is not all. The team needs to wake up at stop mucking around waiting for Messi to pull a rabbit outta his hat, there’s little hope for the defense so I’m not even gonna complain about them, Ever should NEVER be allowed anywhere near a post defensively again, you have Patore on the roster and the rest of the midfield looks like crap-why not try him, Messi cannot play all positions at the same time. :roll:

    Ya know what, if Messi’s gonna be expected to play creative midfielder, then why not put him in there with three decent forwards to feed?
    Romero
    Zanetti, Burdisso, Milito, Rojo(can’t help the back line problem)
    Messi, Masche, Pastore
    Teves, Hiquain, Aguero
    it couldn’t hurt?!?

    Oh, and I agree with Blitz about Bolivia’s #9! 😉

  89. Humphrey Bogart
    July 2, 2011

    It seems what I feared most, did actually happen. The press in Argentina has identified the culprit for this deseaster: is it Banega and his ridiculous own goal? Is it Tevez/Lavezzi for missing the most easy chances? Is it Batista for his coaching errors? No, it is of course Leo Messi. Got this from the Guardian comment section:

    Just read a synopsis of the Argentine press and there’s little love for Messi.
    According to Olé – which splashes with the headline: “Who are you?” under a pic of him – Messi was ‘lost’ and was ‘without doubt not a leader and far, very far from his best’.
    La Nación says that “Leo was everywhere and nowhere but Messi’s star never shone’.

    Ungrateful bastards! Look at us, we had Roy Keane and treated him as a national hero despite his crying off for friendlies and away competitive fixtures in places such as Georgia and Iran. Yet Messi travels thousands of kilometres around the globe to play meaningless friendlies against the Algerias and Albanias of this world and they slate him

    • blitzen
      July 2, 2011

      I would like to ask these people what exactly they would have liked Messi to have done differently? He worked his butt off and got very little support from the other players. He fed Tevez several times when that was the better option, made himself available everywhere for passes that never came because the midfield couldn;t hold onto the ball, and even supported Di Maria who chose to fall down every chance he got instead of trying to actually set up a goal.

      He seemed to be building a good relationship with Kun. Maybe if Kun starts the next game they can actually put something together.

      • Humphrey Bogart
        July 2, 2011

        He could score a Hattrick in the finale and they would still prefer Tevez, just because he is “the local Boy”. It is detestable and cheap how they treat Leo, it must be really terrible for him, he gives his all and gets nothing than negatives back, Tevez was playing like sh*** and he can do no bad

        • blitzen
          July 2, 2011

          Not to mention how frustrating it must be to play with a team that is frankly, just not good enough for him. Going from a team where every player works for every other, where they rarely lose the ball, where he can count on the ball being where he needs it to be, to…what we saw yesterday…no wonder he doesn’t look like he is enjoying himself when he plays with them.

          • can_we_go_Xalvies
            July 2, 2011

            Exactly, Messi has to play a role where he has to create everything for the rest, he has to be “the leader” and his teammates give him nothing, add on top of that every opponent has atleast two players within a 3-4 foot radius of Messi at all times.

    • Vj
      July 2, 2011

      I wonder if he said ‘Mucho murro’ somewhere..

    • K_legit
      July 2, 2011

      Love how Cucho comes in and just swats the Bolivian dude away like a fly

  90. messi_fan
    July 2, 2011

    Stuff like this makes me wish Messi had opted to play for Spain

    • Humphrey Bogart
      July 2, 2011

      I have the same thought, with him they would be unstoppable for years to come. Hopefully he is not to depressed because of all this hatred he gets.

      • Ryan
        July 2, 2011

        True, but considering the last 2 tournaments, I think Spain have been doing all right!

        • Nav
          July 2, 2011

          Holy christ Spain would be unstoppable with Messi. Hey maybe Iker would like him a little too. 😛

  91. Rao
    July 2, 2011

    Can someone send me a video of Argentine defence?.That’s quite 👿 of me but I’m really curious to see why you guys here loathing their defence.

    Btw,Wanna have a laugh?.Then read this article.Don’t go by the URL of it.The content is as ridiculous as the title.

      • xavi
        July 2, 2011

        Barcelona idiots like Puyol and Pique come out with comments on the situation more often than they play games.

        😆 He forgot to mention it’s inevitable Fabregas speaks more of his desire to return home than he plays too because he is injured all the time 😛

        HATERS GONNA HATE!!!

        • July 3, 2011

          I get that blogging gives everyone a voice, but comeone!!!!! he is not even informed,, he sounds like a bitter fan. Just makes me appreciate BFB so much more…

  92. blitzen
    July 2, 2011

    According to the official squad list, Masch, Cambiasso, and Banega are all listed as defensive midfielders. Not an attacking midfielder or playmaker in the lot. And that was the starting midfield. :roll:

    • July 2, 2011

      This is the thing. Neither Banega nor cambiasso played as a DM in this game. So while I totally understand the need of Banega who had a very good game despite the own goal, the presence of Cambiasso was unfortunate as he was doing a Hlebbed Pastore.

      • Humphrey Bogart
        July 2, 2011

        Agree with you with exception that Banega had a good game. He hardly came to the defence to get the ball and help them to release pressure and instead of passing and getting the ball to Leo, he tried a lot of fruitless dribbles

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