Argentina National Team- Argentina win impeccable world cup in the final shootout

Argentina National team-Argentina’s men football team is a big name in the football world. One of the most successful teams, Argentina has won 15 COPA America and two World Championships till now. Argentina has produced many world-class footballers like Diego Maradona, Lionel Messi, and Gabriel Batistuta.

Argentina has qualified at the World Cups 18 times to date. The Argentine team reserved the Qatar seat after earning the second position from the South American region. Read more about Argentina’s football history, major tournaments, and the top 5 greatest players.

Latest news

Argentina beats France and won the 2022 World Cup after a thrilling penalty shoot-out victory against France in an amazing final. It’s a third world cup win for Argentina. The team defeats France 4-2 in a penalty shootout after a 3-3 draw featuring two goals from the living legend Messi and a hat trick by his heir apparent, France forward Kylian Mbappé.

Argentina won the 2022 FIFA World Cup
Soccer Football – FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 – Final – Argentina v France – Lusail Stadium, Lusail, Qatar – December 18, 2022 Argentina’s Lionel Messi lifts the World Cup trophy alongside teammates as they celebrate after winning the World Cup

Messi and Mbappé converted the first penalties for their respective teams.
Emi Martinez of Argentina stopped a shot from Kingsley Coman, and after Aurelien Tchouameni of France missed, Gonzalo Montiel had the chance to put the game to a conclusion. He successfully converted the penalty to the left and sparked wild celebrations among the entire football fans.

Argentina Football Brief History

Early Foundations of AFA

Argentina created the Argentine Football Association (AFA) in 1893. Alexander Watson Hutton established it. Hutton was a Scottish sportsperson who brought football to the Argentine land and taught football for the first time. AFA manages national teams and its affiliated clubs.

First Rivalries

Argentina and Uruguay are the early dominants in soccer from the American region. Argentina and Uruguay are rivals of each other. In 1916, Argentina hosted the opening season of the COPA America Championship.

Argentina national team at 1916 Copa America
Argentina national team at 1916 Copa America. Source: Wikipedia

And Argentina and Uruguay were the finalists in the competition. Uruguay beat Argentina and became the winner of the first Copa American football championship.

Thrice COPA America titles

Uruguay and Argentina are neighboring countries and meet each other frequently. Uruguay repeated the same result in the 1928 Summer Olympics and the first FIFA World Cup in 1930. Argentina won the COPA America (Campeonato Sudamericano) thrice titles (1921, 1925, and 1929). During that time, Argentina toured Europe to compete against the best teams and won 16 out of 19 games.

1929 Copa America champion Argentine team
Copa America Champion team Argentina. Source: Wikipedia

Argentina then participated in the 1928 Olympics, considered the World’s most prestigious international tournament before the FIFA World Cup. The Argentine team reached the finals of the tournament but lost to Uruguay.

First World Cup

In the inaugural World Cup, Argentina was one of the 13 participating teams. In group matches, it won against its group ahead of France, Chile, and Mexico.

The Argentine team destroyed the USA 6-1 in the semi-finals and set up a meeting with Uruguay in the finals.

Argentina national team at 1930 World Cup
1930 World Cup Argentina national team. Source: Wikipedia

During the Montevideo finals, over ten thousand Argentine supporters came to cheer up the team. But, the game went to the host nation’s hand and hence Argentina remained a runner-up.

Argentine forward Guillermo Stábile became the first footballer to earn the Golden Boot in the history of the FIFA World Cup with 8 goals.

1930-1974

In the Second World Cup, Argentina lost a knock-out match against Sweden and left home. After that Argentina did not take part until the 1958 World Cup due to its dispute with FIFA. It withdrew from the 1950 Brazil World Cup due to its conflict with the Brazilian football confederation. Likewise, it refused to participate in the 1958 Switzerland World Cup.

Although they did not participate in the World Cup they won seven Copa American Championships until 1958. Football pundits also said that Argentines used their amateur players from 1934 to 1962.

Then, Argentina participated in every World Cup until 1978 except in 1970. In 1974, it qualified but performed mediocrely and did not play semifinals.

First World Champion- The Menotti Era

After scoring low in the 1974 World Cup, AFA replaced former coach Vladislav Cap and hired a new coach Luis Menotti. The team also reformed and a few emerging new players like Diego Maradona were called into the team.

But, Maradona did not get a chance to play in the 1978 World Cup because Menotti thought Maradona was too young for the tournament. Instead, Maradona participated in and won the 1979 FIFA World Youth Championship.

In the 1978 World Cup, the Argentine team was led by coach Menotti and captain Daniel Passarella. The team beat Hungary in their opening match and France in the second game. But lost the final group match against Italy.

In the second round, Argentina faced Brazil, Peru, and Poland. It won against Peru and Poland and drew against Brazil. Brazil and Argentina had the same numbers, but they advanced due to a goal difference.

During the final match, Argentina took the lead against the Netherlands with a forward Kempes’ goal in 38 minutes. Argentina was near to finishing the game but 8 minutes before the end of the second half; the Netherlands returned a goal and changed the game.

Argentina national team at 1978 world cup
1978 World Champion Argentine player with the trophy. Source: FIFA World Cup News

Then the match went to extra time and Argentine striker Kempes once again attempted a goal to the opponent’s post in 105 minutes. Bertoni added one goal in 115 minutes. Hence, Argentina became the FIFA World Cup Champion for the first time.

During the tournament, Argentine playmaker Mario Kempes became the highest scorer. Thus, he earned the Golden Boot and Golden Ball as the tournament’s best player. Even though they were World champions, they could not win the South American Championships at that time.

Fall of Menotti Era

In 1982, the Argentine squad went to Spain to participate and regain their title. While Argentina was fighting with the UK in the Falklands War.

The main lineup was of the previous World Cup Champion and added a few new players like Maradona. But, the team did not perform well and Maradona also could not show his skills.

The team left the tournament after losing against Brazil and Italy in the second round. The team’s performance declined due to war news and the age gap differentiation between senior and young players.

Maradona Era: The Return of Glory

After failing the World Cup, Menotti resigned from the national team and then hired a new coach Carlos Bilardo who then took over the team until 1993.

Argentina was placed in a group with Italy, Bulgaria, and South Korea. In group matches, Argentina defeated South Korea and Bulgaria.

Whereas, it tied against Italy. In the round of 16, Argentina took revenge on rival Uruguay and reached the quarter-finals.

During the quarter-final match between Argentina and England, the first half remained a goalless draw. And in the six minutes of the second half, Argentine forward Diego Maradona scored a controversial goal with his hand.

Initially, the referee was confused about whether he should approve this goal or not. Maradona encouraged his teammate to embrace the goal so that the referee would accept it.

After four minutes of confusion, a referee approved a goal that created history. This incident is one of the most memorable events of World Cup football. Thus, Maradona considered it the hand of God (la mano de Dios). It also became the goal of the century. Later, Argentina added two more and England returned only one goal.

1986 World Cup trophy and Maradona
Maradona with winning trophy of the 1986 World Cup. Source: Bein Sports

Hence, the Argentine team reached the semi-finals. In the semi-finals, Argentina destroyed Belgium and reached the finals for the third time in the tournament. During the finals, Argentina won, 3-2 with the winning goal from Jorge Burruchaga in the 83rd minute.

Argentina became the second-time World Champion and that time’s hero was Diego Maradona. He scored 5 goals and won the Best Player title hence awarded him with the Golden Ball.

Revenge By West Germany

The World Cup-winning team also represented in next year’s COPA America Championship but could not win. Likewise, it earned the Bronze medal in 1989.

The Argentine team then traveled to Italy to participate in the 1990 World Cup. It started well in group matches, and they were able to reach the finals back to back.

Argentina was attempting to secure the tournament title for the third time. But, the German team took revenge and defeated the South American team with one goal.

Gabriel Batistuta Era (1991 and 1993 Copa Champions)

After the World Cup failure, Bilardo resigned then Alfio Basile became the Argentine coach. Then, they participated in the 1991 Copa America held in Chile. That time a new young player Gabriel Batistuta came into the limelight. He helped the team to win the competition with two wins and one draw in the final round.

Argentina then won thirteen titles of the COPA and Gabriel Batistuta became the top scorer of the tournament with 6 goals. Likewise, Argentina won the tournament’s next season in 1993. However, in the 1994 World Cup, Batitusta’s performance declined and Argentina left home from the first round. Then, Argentina could not surpass the quarter-finals until 2014.

Lionel Messi Era

Lionel Messi’s era began in 2004 when he became a part of the youth team (U 20). In the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship, Argentina won the competition with Messi’s 6 goals. When he clinched the competition, he was 18.

After his impeccable performance in the youth team. The senior manager José Pékerman provided a chance for him to a senior team. Messi made his senior debut in a friendly game against Hungary.

He then participated in the World Cup qualifier matches. After passing the qualifying campaigns, Argentina participated in the German World Cup. Messi was on the team as a substitute player. But, Argentina went home after the quarter-finals. Then, Argentina participated in the COPA 2007 and lost in the finals against Brazil.

Argentina national team at 2014 World Cup
Argentina’s national team at the 2014 World Cup. Source: Pinterest

From 2007-08, Messi became the front line of the team. However, Argentina could not take advantage of him in the World Cup and COPA America. In 2011, Messi became the captain of the team. Then, he led the team into three consecutive finals; the 2014 World Cup, 2015, and 2016 COPA America.

In the 2014 Brazil World Cup, Argentina was close to winning its third title. But, the German team destroyed them in the finals.

Hence, once again, Argentina remained runner-up. Messi’s captaincy also failed twice in COPA of 2015 and 2016 when Argentina lost against Chile. Likewise, Argentina could not surpass the first knock-out stage in the 2018 World Cup. Messi waited 10 years to win the major title in his captaincy.

2021 COPA America Champion

In 2021, Argentina reached the finals of COPA America. During the finals, Argentina defeated rival Brazil and won the competition. Argentina also equaled Uruguay’s record of Copa America titles.

Messi and Colombian player Luis Diaz became the top scorers of the tournament with 4 goals each. After that, Messi’s team traveled to England and won the CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions against Italy.

Top Five Greatest Argentine Footballers of All Time

Argentina is always a powerhouse in world football, and it always provides the best talent to world football. It is a difficult task to select 5 among dozens of best players in Argentine football history.

Diego Maradona

Diego Armando Maradona was a former Argentine footballer and manager. Maradona is one of the greatest footballers in Argentine history. Maradona was one of the two joint winners of the FIFA Player of the 20th Century award. He was nicknamed The Golden Boy (El Pibe de Oro). Maradona earned 91 caps and scored 34 goals under Argentine Jersey.

Maradona still holds the record of the youngest goalscorer in the nation. He scored his first international goal when he was 18 years and 7 months old in 1979 against Scotland.

He later coached the team at the 2010 World Cup but resigned after its failure. Maradona played club football for FC Barcelona, Napoli, Boca Juniors, and Sevilla. He left the world on 25 November 2020.

Lionel Messi

Lionel Andrés Messi is one of the most decorated footballers in the history of the soccer world. Messi is a god-gift talent and has impressed millions of fans with his prolific skills and team game. Messi is the highest cap and highest scorer in Argentina. He has earned 162 caps and scored 86 goals to date.

He is one of the two joint greatest footballers of the twenty-first century. Messi also holds 7 Ballon d’Or, 1 Golden Ball, 6 European Golden Shoes, and 2 FIFA Club World Cup Golden Balls.

A youth product of Spanish club Barcelona spent 17 years playing there and moved to French club Paris Saint-Germain. Messi has participated in four World Cups to date.

Daniel Passarella

Daniel Alberto Passarella is a former Argentine footballer and team manager. He was one of the best South American defenders of all time. Passarella was a captain of the national team when Argentina won its first World Cup.

He earned 70 caps in his one-decade career. Passarella played club football for River Plate, Fiorentina, and Internazionale. He later managed Argentina’s national team from 1994 to 1998 as well as Uruguay from 1999-2001.

Gabriel Batistuta

Gabriel Omar Batistuta is a former footballer from Argentina. He is also one of the legendary strikers of all time, noted for powerful strikes. He participated in three World Cups and 5 COPAs. Batistuta won two Copa America in 1991 and 1993.

He still holds the record for the all-time second-highest scorer after Lionel Messi in international matches with his 56 goals from 78 caps from 1991-2002.

Sergio Agüero del Castillo

Sergio Agüero is a former footballer of the Argentine national team. Agüero is one of the best strikers of the twenty-first century. His career was at its peak but shortened due to several injuries.

Agüero is the third-highest scorer of the Argentine team with 41 goals from his 101 winning caps. He played from 2006-2021. Aguero is also the all-time highest scorer of the English club Manchester City with 184 goals.

Aguero represented Argentina in three World Cups and five Copa Americas including the 2021 champion.

In 2007, he won the Golden Ball and Golden shoe at the FIFA U 20 World Cup. In 2002, Aguero was admitted into the Premier League Hall of Fame Award by the English Premier League. Aguero retired from all kinds of football in 2021 because of his heart conditions and several injuries.

Qatar World Cup 2022 Argentina Squad

During the South American qualifier match for the Qatar World Cup, Argentina came out second in the list behind Brazil. Hence, it secured a place in the tournament. Argentina placed in the C Group in the World Cup draw, and it will face opponents, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, and Poland.

In the first match on 22 November 2022, Argentina will play against Saudi Arabia at Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail. The twenty-second World Cup will begin on 20 November with the host country and Ecuador‘s game.

Argentine team’s manager Lionel Scaloni will come to the field to win his first World Cup title. He helped the team to win the 2021 Copa America and the 2022 CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions. It will probably be the last World Cup for captain Lionel Messi. The Argentine playing squad will be announced in October 2022.