Reports emanating from the Albiceleste say Jorge Sampaoli has completely lost control of the Argentina dressing room at the World Cup and is set to be sacked after the tournament.
The South American giants have endured a dismal campaign in Russia so far, playing a disappointing 1-1 draw against Iceland in their opening game before being annihilated 3-0 by Croatia.
A number of prominent Argentine football personalities, including Diego Maradona and Juan Sebastian Veron, have been highly critical of Sampaoli’s tactics and team selection even before the World Cup.
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According to The Sun, senior Argentina players such as Messi wanted Jorge Sampaoli sacked and replaced by 1986 World Cup-winning star Jorge Barruchaga ahead of Tuesday’s crucial clash with Nigeria.
The report went further to state that the squad demanded talks with Sampaoli, his staff and Argentina FA chief Claudio Tapia, who has, in turn, has given the coach a stay of execution for the remainder of the tournament.
However, it is believed that the senior players have effectively taken charge of tactics and team selection, They have opted to switch from Sampaoli’s preferred three-man defence to a 4-3-3 aimed at getting the ball to Lionel Messi in more advanced positions so he can wreak havoc against oppositions.
Argentina must beat the Super Eagles of Nigeria in Tuesday’s final Group D game to stand a chance of reaching the last 16, anything less than a victory for the Albiceleste means an early exit from the World Cup.