Louis van Gaal laughs at “silly” Lionel Messi inquiry ahead of Argentina vs Netherlands
Louis van Gaal’s Netherlands should defeat Lionel Messi and Argentina at the Lusail Arena on Friday to arrive at the World Cup semi-finals and keep their expectations alive
Lionel Messi might make his last World Cup appearance on Friday night – yet at the same time ends up at the focal point of pre-match mind games.
The Paris Saint-Germain hotshot was the subject of guarantee and counter-guarantee as the two coaches exchanged verbal blows the fake conflict. Gotten some information about how he intended to stop the 35-year-old, Dutch coach Louis van Gaal said: “We won’t uncover any designs to you – it would be inept of us to do as such.
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“Yet, it is so easy to concoct a response with respect to how to stop him. You should hinder and close the passing lines. I can’t see this making an over the top hoo-ha.”
Yet, Argentine boss Lionel Scaloni wasn’t taking Van Gaal’s remarks at face-esteem. The subject of how to keep Messi from applying impact over games has grieved each top coach in the world during the beyond 15 years.
Furthermore, when tested, Scaloni made a move to set up his own distraction. He said: “We’ll see what occurs with Lionel tomorrow. We’re utilized to our adversaries thinking of something else. We would rather not rush to make predestined judgment calls.
“We could think of a couple of strategic contrasts of our own. We have specific subtleties. We can do something else to hurt them. Also, in the event that they choose to man-mark Lionel, we’ll remember it, as well.”
Messi’s team-mate – Brighton ability Alexis Macintosh Allister – requested to single out his star of the competition up to this point, revealed that ‘the Bug’ was doing great. He said: “I ought to say Messi. He’s been doing unimaginable stuff,both in training and in matches. He’s feeling fine, he’s happy – and that can only be good for us.”
Rumours were rife that the two-time champions had been hit with an injury blow after influential midfielder Rodrigo De Paul had suffered a hamstring strain. However, former West Ham defender Scaloni was eager to cast that into doubt while also revealing that Juventus star Angel di Maria was inching close to recovery after overcoming a muscle problem in his left leg.
He said: “I don’t know where this has come from that there’s something going on with Rodrigo. He’s feeling well. We trained behind-closed-doors so I don’t know what’s going on. Some players train in private after a game. He trained – and Di Maria also trained.”
Scaloni admitted that Friday night’s clash will be one of fine margins. He said: “There are eight teams in the quarter-finals and any one of them could be playing in the final. It’s very close. A very thin line.
“We think there are eight evenly-matched teams out there. They’ve all earned the right to be there. I hope our people enjoy the game. We will break our backs for the country.
“But this is sport and I really hope we are happy at the final whistle. If it isn’t a positive result, I hope our people can identify with these players and what they’ve done.”