Soccer fans around the globe are burning of excitement: the Copa América Centenario is around the corner and it’s promising to be explosive. One particular team is getting a lot of attention: Argentina. Undeniably favorite for the final trophy, suffering from a lack of silverware in over two decades, now is the perfect time for the Albiceleste to reunite with its glorious past and make history for the 100th edition of the competition. The determination and the expectations of the entire are at an all time high as perfectly shown by the TYC sports commercial promoting the competition.
Here are my five reasons why Argentina must win the Copa América Centenario:
NO MAJOR INTERNATIONAL TITLE SINCE 1993
It has been 26 years since Argentina’s last title in a major international competition: it was a Copa América title garnered by the Albiceleste led by legendary striker Gabriele Batistuta. It was a time when Argentina was dominating the world of fútbol: between 1978 and 1993 Argentina won two Copa América and two World Cups. Nothing ever since.
THREE TIMES A CHARM?
Despite a long period without title Argentina has come back to the top: they are officially ranked number one by the FIFA. To Argentina’s defense, they have suffered a curse in finals. While their overall level and team chemistry have not been exceptional in the last two major competitions they succeeded in going all the way through the competition… before losing the decisive game. They have lost in final against Germany in the last World Cup and against Chile in the last Copa América. Frustrating. After two failed attempts, we shall see if the third time is a charm.
WELL ABOVE THE OTHER COMPETING TEAMS?
While Argentina will arguably face a tougher competition on the group stage (with the presence of titleholder Chile) compared to some of the other favorites, they are undeniably the favorite to win the 2016 edition. They have the quality, the experience and the depth on the bench to go all the way through. Moreover the injury of Luis Suarez for Uruguay, and the absence of Neymar Jr. for Brazil shall facilitate its quest. Even bookmakers agree. According to BettingExpert.com, Argentina are favorites at best-odds 3.60 with Bwin to win the tournament.
INCREDIBLE ATTACKING FIREPOWER
Argentina’s attacking line for the Copa América Centenario is absolutely breathtaking. Perhaps one of the most impressive in history in my opinion. Tata Martino is one lucky coach. Let alone Lionel Messi, who does not need any additional praising, who would not want to have Sergio Agüero, Angel Di Maria and Gonzalo Higuain on the same squad? While El Kün has had a tricky season with Manchester City, Ángel Di Mariá just won four titles with Paris-Saint-Germain and Higuain simply broke Serie A’s single-season scoring record. Powerful.
Last year, Leo Messi told Argentine daily Newspaper La Nación “I would give everything to win the Copa America”. Needless to say that after suffering yet another disappointment in his last lost final against Chile, his determination will be multiplied. And it is legitimate. The five-time Ballon d’Or winner must step up his game with his selection and lead his country to a major international title. This is an absolute necessity in its quest for legacy. All soccer icons from Diego Maradona to Zinedine Zidane were capable of taking their team to the next level. Messi has more than enough talent to just do that. The pressure is and expectations are immense; but they are proportional to Messi’s incredible talent.
Who do you think can stop Argentina in the Copa America Centenario this year? Let us know in the comments!