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Messi to have view of giant Ronaldo mural from Argentina's team hotel

01 July, 2018, 00:04 | Author: Carla Brady
  • Messi opens scoring for Argentina

You can see France and Argentina kick off the knockout stage of the 2018 World Cup Saturday at 9am et/6am pt. across the TSN Network and on CTV. Joachim Low's side also recorded 72 per cent possession in their games, second only to Spain (72.8 per cent).

Argentina, the beaten finalists four years ago, escaped by the skin of their teeth after a ragged group phase and will rely heavily on Messi when their ageing team face France in Kazan at 1400 GMT. And they probably couldn't have been handed a more daunting matchup than France, who are one of the favourites to win the tournament outright. Yes, they got seven out of nine points, but that does not mean that they have a game that can easily outperform Argentina.

Although France seems less stormy than Argentina, who performed poorly in the group stages, the French are actually not the favorites.

Brazil and Belgium are among the most favoured teams to go all the way and will be heavily tipped to account for Mexico and Japan respectively in Monday's matches.

The last time Uruguay allowed a goal was in a 4-2 victory over Bolivia in World Cup qualifying last October. "I am sure they will feel like going much further in the competition, they have won the World Cup before".

One half of the bracket features big names in two high-powered matches right out of the gate while two of the tournament favourites are slated to clash in the last eight.

Both Argentina and Portugal are playing their last-16 games on Saturday, knowing that they will meet each other in the next round if they win their respective matches. "To emerge from such a desperate situation now gives the team tranquility and that could lead to better performances in the tournament".




Uruguay kept clean sheets in three Group A victories, and has held opponents off the scoresheet during a six-match win streak. Some said Messi is the best player in Barcelona whiles his rival, Cristiano Ronaldo is the best player in the world. Some great players such as Mario Kempes, Osvaldo Ardiles and then of course Jorge Burruchaga, Jorge Valdano and Maradona for the 1986 side.

"That is an additional factor. But we know that if we show solidarity in defence, we can stop a player like him".

A corner was played short to Raphael Guerreiro, and his cross from the left was headed home from close range by Pepe, rising high above Diego Godin in the area. "We will have to work collectively in order to try and contain him or in order to try and limit the effect he can have".

Also on the day, Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal will battle against Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani of the two time World Cup champions Uruguay.

Portugal coach Fernando Santos threw up his hands in disgust, realising that coming from behind a second time against this Uruguay defence was going to be a tall order. "It has been like that for the whole of 2018".

The Argentina team will stay in the Ramada hotel ahead of the game.

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