Asian Champs Qatar take on Argentina at Copa America
PORTO ALEGRE, BRAZIL: Asian champions Qatar on Sunday will take on Argentina in their final Group B match at Copa America atArena Do Gremio.
Qatar have played two matches so far. Al Annabi played a 2-2 draw against former Copa champions Paraguay and then narrowly lost to Colombia after a late strike last Wednesday.
Argentina, on the other hand, have failed to impress in their two matches so far. Captained by Lionel Messi, Argentina played a 1-1 draw against Paraguay after losing to 2-0 against Colombia.
Qatar have 1 point from two matches whereas Argentina also have the same tally they are at the bottom of Group B of the 12-team tournament.
The Asian champions are in the same boat as Argentina, with one point from two matches, and are even ahead of Lionel Scaloni’s team on goal difference.
Qatar coach Felix Sanchez on Wednesday praised the fighting spirit of Al Annabi players against Colombia.
“We played against one of the best teams in the world,” Sanchez said after the match. “Despite the loss, we competed until the final whistle. This will give us strength to keep working and preparing for the future,” the Soanish tactician said.
Messi is the only player from Argentina to score for the former World Cup champions while Almoez Ali and Bualem Khoukhi have scored for Qatar.
“We have to think positively and keep our confidence,” Barcelona forward Messi said after team’s match against Paraguay. “We need to improve and arrive in the best shape possible for the next match … and we have to win.”
Messi arrived in Brazil hoping to end a painful run of losing finals with Argentina. Messi has never won a major trophy with Argentina.
Messi lost the Copa finals in 2007, 2015 and 2016 and in 2014 Argentina were also beaten by Germany in the FIFA World Cup final.
Qatar will miss Abdul Karim Hassan and Asim Madibo after both players picked up their second yellow cards against Colombia four days ago.
In another Group B match on Sunday, Colombia take on Paraguay.