Sports

Moscow confectioners build life-size chocolate Messi for Argentine striker's birthday

Moscow confectioners build life-size chocolate Messi for Argentine striker's birthday

A chastening 3-0 defeat to Croatia in Group D last week made for grim reading in that regard for one of global football's heavyweight nations.

Now, with the squad facing the prospect of an early World Cup exit, Argentina's only goal is to beat Nigeria and hope that Iceland don't win against Croatia. On the cake, the bakers carved out a sculpture of Messi wearing a jersey of Barcelona, the football club he plays for.

Croatia have won two consecutive World Cup matches for the first time since 1998.

As per the officials, Messi will be receiving a replica of the FIFA World Cup made from traditional Russian Gzhel ceramics, as a gift on his birthday from the Moscow region.

Players such as Modric and Rakitic are extremely skilful, but their superior technique is more commonly expressed in the clinical precision that saw Argentina dissected last week than any Neymar-style flicks.

While Argentina's World Cup participation appears to evaporate, England have already booked a spot in the knockout stage and Maradona has weighed in on Gareth Southgate's charges.

His first goal against Iceland earned comparisons with Dennis Bergkamp's injury-time wonder goal for the Netherlands that knocked Argentina out of the 1998 World Cup quarter-finals.

More news: Joe Hart will 'come back stronger' after England World Cup disappointment

Musa was restricted to just half an hour off the bench in Nigeria's opening defeat to Croatia but seized his chance when included in the starting XI against Iceland on Friday afternoon. Messi scored twice when Argentina beat Nigeria 3-2 in the group stage four years ago.

In an interview with Brila FM, the U.S. "94 World Cup star, said that he chose to name Musa Eagles" captain when he was coaching Nigeria because the Leicester City star had nice sense of humour.

"I think there is a total lack of authority on Tapia's part".

"Sometimes people in the virtual world make you feel like a criminal simply because you lost a game".

"Whether we like it or not, we are the World Cup runners-up and at some point we have to prove it", he said.

While Sampaoli is under huge strain as he fights to save his reputation, Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr faces less pressure. Mexico placed one foot in the World Cup's last 16 and left South Korea on the brink of elimination after goals from Javier Hernandez and Carlos Vela clinched a 2-1 victory in Rostov.

"[The outcome is important] not only for the points, but also because we haven't found the game we wanted, the tranquility we would like", Biglia said. If La Albiceleste can manage to capture a win over Nigeria on Tuesday then Argentina will move on to the round of 16.


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