Modric leads revamped Croatia against Iceland

Modric leads revamped Croatia against Iceland

Modric leads revamped Croatia against Iceland

Even a win may not be enough for Argentina, who are bottom of the group - behind Croatia (six points), Nigeria (three) and Iceland (one).

Croatia lost 1-0 to Iceland in a World Cup qualifier and had to go through the playoffs to reach the finals so they will be taking nothing for granted despite speculation that coach Zlatko Dalic could field a second-string team.

However, global success with Argentina has eluded him over his career, which has been highlighted in Russian Federation as they face a humiliating early exit.

They are all nearly certainly set to watch this final group game from the sidelines.

La Pulga still has one more shot to turn around his 2018 World Cup, though. He missed a penalty among 11 unsuccessful shots on goal in a 1-1 draw with Iceland before failing to make any meaningful impact in an error-strewn Argentine display against Croatia.

Argentina's game against Nigeria has an extra importance due to the fact that it may be Messi's last ever game at a World Cup. When I played in the Argentina team with him, he was always the main player and the main man.

"To Leo (...) I would like to speak with you and tell you that you are not to blame for anything".

The five time Ballon d'Or victor could have got them off to the flawless start against the Scandinavians but he missed a penalty in the second half and it's only got worse since then.

Messi turned 31 two days before the match, and there's strong speculation he'll retire from the national team if Argentina loses.

It is at global level where his career has never quite his club exploits and why a potential exit tonight would haunt him forever.

"I took responsibility for the defeat (against Croatia) and I am totally confident that we are going to win tomorrow and secure the victory", Sampaoli said.

Last chance at World Cup glory? Messi will touch the ball a lot more.

A month on from Messi's rescue mission in Ecuador, he sat out a friendly as Nigeria beat Argentina 4-2 back in November to highlight how reliant even a squad containing Sergio Aguero, Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala remain on their number 10. "The next day, as a coach, all I thought about was winning", Sampaoli said.

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