Argentina wraps up training for momentous Croatia duel

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Moscow, June 20 (IANS) Argentina’s national team on Wednesday completed its final training session in the Russian town of Bronnitsy near Moscow before heading to Nizhny Novgorod, where they will face Croatia in their second 2018 FIFA World Cup match in Group D.

Head coach Jorge Sampaoli wraped up his preparations for Thursday’s momentous duel against Croatia, which holds the top spot in the group after rolling over Nigeria 2-0, Efe news reported.

Argentina is hungry for a win after tying 1-1 with Iceland, in which Argentina’s superstar forward Lionel Messi failed to convert a penalty and went the entire match without scoring a goal.

Coach Sampaoli worked during the week on a new 3-5-2 strategy, potentially taking out defender Marcos Rojo, defensive midfielder Lucas Biglia and right winger Angel Di Maria, to be replaced with right back Gabriel Mercado, right wing Cristian Pavon and left midfielder Marcos Acuña.

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Enzo Perez could also enter instead of Maximiliano Meza if the coach opts for a more defensive midfield.

After Croatia, Argentina is to face Nigeria on June 26.

–IANS

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