Argentina

One of the most attractive teams to watch and home to the great Lionel Messi

World Cup 2010
World Cup 2010
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The team

The Argentineans have reached the final on four separate occasions, and have hoisted the World Cup twice – the last time being 24 years ago. However, after scraping through in the qualifying rounds, many have dismissed the likelihood of Maradona’s men adding a third trophy to their cabinet. However, with players like Tevez, Agüero and, of course, that mini-magician Lionel Messi, the Argentines will always be a footballing force to be reckoned with.

The coach

Diego Maradona
While Maradona may have been one of the greatest players to grace the football pitch, he has some distance to go before proving his managerial credentials.

Player to watch

Lionel Messi
The pint-sized prodigy is widely regarded as the world’s best player. Though he hasn’t yet replicated his domestic form for his country, it’s hard not to expect great things from a man who scored 47 goals for Barcelona in one season. What’s more, Messi is only 22 – here’s a man who really does have the world at his feet.

We’re on the ball

World Cup appearances: 15
Previous best: Winners, 1978 & 1986
Odds of winning: 15/2
Strange but true: Argentina almost didn’t qualify for the FIFA World Cup finals this year – only scraping through on points
Fixtures: Nigeria, June 12, 6pm, Johannesburg Korea Republic, June 17, 3.30pm, Johannesburg Greece, June 22, 10.30pm, Polokwane

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