Lionel Messi

With the 2019 Copa America forthcoming, all eyes will be on Argentinian superstar, Lionel Messi as he hopes to win his first trophy with his national team.

Argentina has endured horrible results in the past few years. In 2011, they lost the Copa America final to Uruguay. In 2014 they lost in the FIFA World Cup final to Germany. In 2015 and 2016, they lost back to back finals to Chile in the Copa America. The 2018 FIFA World Cup was even worse, as they were eliminated in the round of 16 by France.

Messi has endured a lot of criticism because of his inability to land a major trophy with his national team. Now, he is set to captain the Albiceleste in the 2019 Copa America.

Here’s how Messi and Argentina can win the trophy.

1. Use proper full-backs

Argentina has struggled with the full-back position in recent times. They have not used a proper full back in most of the competitions they played in, especially in the left-back position. Argentina has always played a player out of position in the full-back area.

If they are to lift the Copa America, they need to use good full-backs who can stretch the pitch and support the attack. Nicolas Tagliafico and Saravia are the main full backs in the Argentina XI.

2. Avoid Messi Dropping Deep

One area that Argentina has lacked in recent times is in the playmaking department. They have not had a playmaker who can create a play from deep and start attacks.

This has led to Messi dropping deep to create play and start attacks. Lionel Messi should not drop deep because it will be difficult for him to influence the attack; he will easily be surrounded by players marking him. Giovanni Lo Celso should be given the playmaking role and give Messi freedom.

3. Play with determination

When Argentina lost the last three Copa America finals, they were blamed for not having determination. The players didn’t give their all and played with little or no conviction.

The current Albiceleste squad is mainly made up of many youth players, who will be eager for success. They will need to be determined and give their best.

Argentina last won the Copa America in 1993, which was 26 years ago, so they really need to win this trophy. Lionel Messi needs this trophy to cement his name as an all-time great.

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This article is brought to us by our Sports Writers Club resident columnist – Collins Michael Nwokolo. Follow him on Twitter and Pinterest.