Argentina coach concerned over World Cup qualifier ground

Cordoba (Argentina), March 21 (IANS) Argentina football coach Gerardo Martino has voiced his concern over the “deplorable” state of the pitch for the upcoming World Cup Russia 2018 qualifier.

The concern is about the Mario Kempes Stadium here where the national squad will face Bolivia on March 29 in the South American qualifying tournament, reports Xinhua.

The grass was badly damaged due to British heavy metal band Iron Maiden and Mexican pop band Mana’s concerts which took place in the stadium on March 15 and at the end of February respectively.

For that reason, the ground was filled with sand which will affect the ball’s bounce and is also dangerous for the players.

Martino has taken this situation into account along with the Argentine Football Association (AFA), who have ordered that efforts to improve the “deplorable” pitch be speeded up.

Argentina will begin training from Monday with their sights set on winning the next two qualifiers.

The first will take place on March 24 against Chile in Santiago and then Argentina will face Bolivia in Cordoba, 700 kilometres north of capital Buenos Aires.

Argentina lost to Ecuador 0-2 at home in the first match of the qualifiers in Buenos Aires. They then drew 0-0 against Paraguay in Asuncion and then 1-1 with Brazil in Buenos Aires. They defeated Colombia 1-0 away in Baranquilla.

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