Edgardo Bauza to drop Gonzalo Higuain for the tie against Colombia
Argentina have begun their World Cup qualifying campaign on a sour note and Bauza is ready to ring in the changes.
Argentina’s national team coach Edgardo Bauza has claimed that despite their dismal start to the qualifying campaign for the 2018 World Cup, the Argentine fans should not be overly worried about their country missing out on the elite competition. He even went on to suggest that he was not afraid to ring a number of changes to help the side find their winning rhythm and Gonzalo Higuain could be one of the casualties of the manager’s stance in their upcoming match against Colombia.
Speaking ahead of the game against Colombia at San Juan, Bauza was of the opinion that while the criticism of the side is justified given their poor form in recent times, people were being overly negative about his side’s chances of qualifying for the World Cup. He was quoted as saying, “I've never questioned that we will qualify for Russia 2018 because the group is strong and that gives us confidence. We have lost points that we didn't expect to and so it's normal for the criticism to appear.”
The manager requested the Argentina fans to believe in the side and get behind them on Tuesday by saying, “Hopefully in San Juan people can get the importance of this shirt. We need that support.”
Dropping Higuain could be beneficial
Gonzalo Higuain, Argentina’s current number 9 is expected to be dropped for the game alongside Pablo Zabaleta and Enzo Perez, with Lucas Pratto, Ever Banega and Gabriel Mercado expected to come into the side at the trio’s expense.
While Higuain has been a prolific presence, previously for Napoli and currently for Juventus, his performances with the Argentina national team can be termed as mediocre as the player who has a penchant for finding the back of the net has missed glorious opportunities time and again, in the process, becoming one of the world’s most beloved meme figure.
Adding to his list of glorious misses was his horrific penalty in the shootout against Chile in the 2015 Copa America Final.
His miss in the crucial finals against Germany and Chile still haunts most Argentina fans and while he has scored 7 goals since the game against Germany, the fans have been calling for his head owing to his poor, often uninterested showing for the national team.
With Bauza expected to drop him in favour of Lucas Pratto who plays in the Brazilian League, the move could work as the wake-up call needed for the player as many feel that being the side’s automatic first choice striker has brought complacency to his game.