Argentina are set to choose their own starting eleven for the group stage game against Nigeria as manager Jorge Sampaoli is stripped of his managerial power.
The two-time winners have had a fraught time in the World Cup 2018 so far. They drew 1-1 with Iceland and lost 3-0 to Croatia, in the most hapless manner.
It feel as though a mini-crisis is brewing at the Argentina camp, while their boss, Sampaoli, has been given a vote of no confidence by the players.
Despite news that the side is hoping to have the former Sevilla manager sacked, reports now suggest that he’s to be kept as coach, for his tournament at least, but stripped of any power.
At the centre of the fallout is Lionel Messi. The Barcelona star turns 31 yesterday and this World Cup is considered his last chance of laying claim to a major international trophy in his relative prime.
The results for the South Americans so far have given cause for concern for the nation, and in particular, AFA general manager Jorge Burruchaga.
1986 World Cup winner Ricardo Giusti has now said he’s has spoken to Burruchaga, who told him that the players would be consulted before the pivotal Nigeria game.
Giusti said, “The players will decide the team, that’s a fact. If Sampaoli wants to sit in the bench, he can do it. If not, no problem.”
Something needs to change: Argentina are sat in fourth spot in Group D and need to grab a win against Nigeria to stand any chance of progressing to the knockout stages of the competition.