Australian players respect Lionel Messi, but won’t be intimidated by him


AustraliaK players can’t hide their admiration Lionel Messi as they prepare to take Argentina in the round of 16, but believe they have what it takes to surprise the South American giants.

Australia upset Denmark 1-0 to punch their tickets into the knockout stages of the World Cup involving the winners of Group D on Wednesday evening France In the last 16 for the first time since 2006

However, his reward for this is one of the most challenging tasks in football right now: a date with Argentina at the Ahmed Bin Ali Stadium on Saturday evening.

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Driven by a masterful performance from his talisman, la albiceleste easy calculation poland in their final group game on Wednesday.

Messi may have saved a penalty and not had a direct hand in either of his side’s goals at Stadium 974, but he was otherwise sublime, breaking the record previously held by Diego Maradona for the oldest player to score 5-plus chances. Tha and complete more than 5 dribbles in a World Cup match. He also surpassed Maradona for most matches played in the World Cup with 22.

“I always loved Messi and I think he is the greatest player ever,” defender Milos Degenek Told. ,[But] It is not an honor to play against him because he is a human being like all of us.

“It is an honor to be in the last 16 of the World Cup. It is an honor in itself. Whether we play Argentina or we would have played against poland, it would still have been an honor to represent Australia In the round of 16 of the World Cup.”

Matt Leckie, whose goal saw the Socceroos edge past the Dane, on Wednesday became the first Victorian to score at the World Cup and ensured he, along with Matty Ryan, became Australia’s all-time goalscorer in the men’s World Cup against Argentina. Will break the record.

And with so few neutrals predicting anything less than Argentina’s march, he argues that his side has little to lose.

“It’s a 90-minute game, maybe 120. And it’s a knockout game,” said Leckie. ‘Cause nobody expected us to be here, we [can] Throw everything at them and there is no pressure on us.

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“I told all the boys participating in this tournament, I am sure you are going to give your best [when you] Do what you’ve done your whole career to get here and express yourself.

“There is no pressure on us, we just need to enjoy the moment and enjoy the opportunity. Nobody expects us to win. So let’s shock the world.”

“It’s going to be a tough game, playing against probably the best footballer ever to grace the game. [But] It’s 11 vs 11. There are no 11 Messis, there is only one.”

Argentina and Australia both recover from first day defeats to reach last 16 2-1 defeat To Saudi Arab was hardly ideal, it was far less damaging than football 4-1 Hammering at the hands of France,

Coach Graham Arnold quickly moved to re-cast that game as a “friendly” and learning experience, and Degenek believes his side have taken some learnings from it which they applied on Saturday can go.

“We learned a lot from the French game. I think we showed them something [too much] Respect,” Degenek said. “This game will be a completely different game in two days’ time.

“France plays one way, Argentina will play a different way. It’s two completely different styles of football and you can’t really just go from one game to the other.”

“But you can take some of the positives from that and carry on into this game against Argentina. But France doesn’t have that one guy that we all know Argentina has. He’s capable of everything “

“Unfortunately, I’m a huge fan of his, but I would probably love winning the World Cup more than that.” [to see] To win him the World Cup.”

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