The “Scaloneta” reached 35 games without losing after the last victory against Jamaica (3-0) last September and equaled a mark that had been registered by Brazil (between 1993 and 1996) and Spain (between 2007 and 2009). In the event of a new positive result, Argentina will be one game away from the longest streak in history, which belongs to Italy with 37 unbeaten games between 2018 and 2021.
Despite the version that indicated that the coaching staff of the selected team had requested to make more changes than the five that FIFA allows, this was denied by Lionel Scaloni, which confirms that the match will be registered as official.
On the football front, the friendly will help the coaching staff to test variants to find a replacement for the injured Giovani Lo Celso.
Scaloni only had one practice with the full squad before the friendly, a product of the uncomfortable and unusual calendar of the European leagues that retained their players until the last moment.
According to what the coach said at a press conference, “no risk” will be taken and only players who are in good physical condition will play.
Therefore, with this filter, the presences of Cristian Romero, Marcos Acuña and Nicolás González, the three footballers who arrived at the concentration without football rhythm with their respective clubs due to dragging various discomforts, would be ruled out. Captain Lionel Messi will be there from the start and will surely lead the attack along with Ángel Di María and Lautaro Martínez.
The rival, the United Arab Emirates, number 46 in the FIFA ranking, will not be a demanding opponent and the presence of Arruabarrena on the substitute bench ensures the “friendly” nature of the match. The “Vasco”, former coach of Tigre and Boca, jokingly told in different interviews that he had already warned his managers that they cannot “touch” Messi because if something happens to him, he would not be able to return to Argentina. . The repercussion of his statements was of such magnitude that the coach took advantage of the last press conference to clarify that they were a “joke” since he would “never” tell a player to play “carefully.” This will be the first time in history that Argentina will play against the United Arab Emirates.