Argentina football chief says team has key chance to win final Group match

Bronnitsy, June 24: Argentine football association President Claudio Tapia said on Sunday that the entire team and coaching staff are committed to making the most of their key final match against Nigeria in Group D of the World Cup, which will decide whether Argentina advances to the round of 16.
Argentina’s soccer chief reiterated his confidence in head coach Jorge Sampaoli, following Argentina’s 3-0 loss to Croatia and their 1-1 draw against Iceland, which have left them at the bottom of their group and on the brink of elimination from the World Cup.

Speaking at a press conference, Tapia said media claims that players had asked for the coach’s dismissal ahead of Tuesday’s momentous game against Nigeria were false.

He asked reporters to stand by the national team and not hurt them with rumours for the sake of breaking a story or by revealing information that would give an advantage to Argentina’s opponents.

Tapia’s remarks came after Argentine media had said the relationship between Sampaoli and his players has worsened and that some had called for his firing.

Nigeria’s 2-0 win against Iceland on Friday meant Argentina’s hopes of progressing to the round of 16 along with Croatia remained alive, if they can win on Tuesday. IANS