Nigeria vs Argentina
World Cup Group D
Date: Tuesday, 26 June 2018
Kick-Off at 19:00 UK / 20:00 CET
Venue: Saint-Petersburg Stadium.
Argentina have put themselves in a very tough position after a nightmare evening in Nizhny Novgorod. A tough 0-3 defeat to Croatia, which followed the opening 1-1 draw to Iceland, faced La Albiceleste with a prospect of a shocking group stage exit in Russia. To avoid such destiny, Jorge Sampaoli’s men desperately need success against Nigeria on Tuesday evening in St. Petersburg.
- Argentina are facing prospects of a group phase exit and they are in a desperate need for a strong display on Tuesday against Nigeria in order to progress.
- The Super Eagles will be encouraged with a 2-0 victory over Iceland, inspired by Ahmed Musa’s brace.
- Each of last four H2H games between these two sides produced at least four goals and saw both teams on the score sheet.
Nigeria vs Argentina Match Preview
The Super Eagles will head into the game in much higher spirits following an inspiring display from Leicester City’s striker Ahmed Musa on Friday against Iceland. The man who spent the previous season on loan at CSKA Moscow took advantage of the chance to make the starting line-up against Iceland establishing himself into a difference-maker with an intriguing second-half brace.
Musa volleyed the ball home just four minutes into the second half before a magnificent solo effort between numbers of Icelandic players at the back to set the final score 15 minutes from time. Such showing certainly earned Musa a place in the starting line-up here in the final fixture of the group phase. It will be very interesting to see if he will be able to show some of his vast potential past the struggling defensive line of Argentina’s here.
Musa’s efforts did the job for Los Gauchos as well because the Argentinians now only need a big victory over the Super Eagles to clinch the second place, or any win combined with Croatia not losing to Iceland in the other outing of the group.
Nigeria vs Argentina Team News and Predicted Line-ups
Nigeria Team News
- Gernot Rohr decided to make as many as three changes to the squad that lost 2-0 to Croatia on the opening day.
- The German expert also applied the change in formation, introducing the 3-5-2 strategy which worked perfectly on Friday against Iceland.
- Both Ahmed Musa and Kelechi Iheanacho were introduced to the starting line-up after coming on from the bench against the Blazers.
- Kenneth Omerou was brought into the back-trio and he generally did a fantastic job against Iceland being one of Nigeria’s top-rated players in the affair.
- Rohr does not have reasons to change anything from the clash with the Scandinavians.
Nigeria Predicted Starting Eleven (3-5-2)
Uzoho – Balogun, Ekong, Omeruo – Moses, Ndidi, Mikel, Etebo, Idowu – Musa, Iheanacho.
Argentina Team News
- The situation in the Argentine dressing room is at the lowest level possible after the catastrophe against Croatia.
- The entire nation turned against Jorge Sampaoli who is persistent in leaving the European stars on the bench.
- He made three changes to the side that failed to beat Iceland on the opening day, but none actually made sense.
- Mercado came on instead of Marcus Rojo, while Biglia and Di Maria made way for Perez and Acuna as the formation went from 4-2-3-1 to 3-4-2-1.
- Sampaoli will likely re-shift to the strategy used against Iceland, but will we finally expect to see Paulo Dybala in the starting line-up?
Argentina Predicted Starting Eleven (4-2-3-1)
Caballero – Salvio, Otamendi, Rojo, Tagliafico – Mascherano, Biglia – Dybala, Messi, Di Maria – Aguero.
Nigeria vs Argentina Head-to-head
The draw has put Nigeria and Argentina together in the same Wold Cup group in consecutive editions. The match played four years ago in Brazil saw Los Gauchos clinch a 3-2 victory inspired by Lionel Messi’s brace.
Interestingly, the two sides met each other at World Cups 2002 and 2010 as well, Argentina winning both of these ties narrowly 1-0.
Overall, teams are looking at their ninth head to head encounter as Argentina picked up five wins and two losses in past eight. The Super Eagles came on top when the two sides last locked horns, back in November last year when they took a 4-2 victory in a friendly. Each of last four head to head outings saw at least four goals scored with the BTTS option “coming in”.
Nigeria vs Argentina Predictions
The Super Eagles picked up only their second victory in last 14 World Cup affairs when they defeated Iceland on Friday afternoon. They proved to have what it takes to stay competitive to the likes of Argentina in the history of H2H encounters as World Cups, with La Albiceleste winning each of three games only by a single goal margin.
Since the Argentinian defensive line showed a clear lack of meticulousness in the opening two clashes at the tournament, we have reasons to expect the continuation of the high-scoring H2H trend. You can back the fifth consecutive head to head outing between these two sides to see goals at both ends and produce at least three in total at the odds of 2.30.
Argentina will be heavily motivated to raise the spirits and clinch a demolishing victory after suffering the heaviest defeat in the group stage of the World Cup since falling 6-1 to Czechoslovakia in 1958. They are on a run of four straight games without a victory at World Cup, their longest winless streak in the history of the competition. There is still time for Lionel Messi and his teammates to fix things up and we believe they have what it takes to make it count against the African outfit.
Predicted Full-Time Result is a victory for Argentina in what could easily be a high-scoring thriller in St. Petersburg.
Nigeria vs Argentina Betting Tips
Over 2.5 goals FT & BTTS @ 2.30.
Argentina to win @ 1.55.
Correct FT Score: 3-1 Argentina @ 13.00.