Colombia boss: ‘How do I mark Messi?’

Colombia manager Hernan Dario Gomez believes he will ‘go crazy’ if he worries too much about Argentina ahead of their Copa America meeting.Along with Chile, Colombia are one of just two nations to taste victory after the first round of matches, with short-priced favourites Brazil and Argentina held to frustrating draws by Venezuela and Bolivia respectively.

Hosts Argentina possess an array of attacking talent but could not score more than once as they came from a goal down against Bolivia, while Colombia edged Costa Rica 1-0 after the Central American nation had a player sent off in the first half.

At a press conference in Santa Fe on Tuesday, Gomez needed little reminding at what his defence would face at the Estadio Brigadier General Estanislao Lopez.

“Out of respect, I base myself on an improvement in my team because if I start thinking about Argentina I’ll go crazy. How do I mark Messi, (Carlos) Tevez, (Sergio) Aguero, (Angel) Di Maria?” he said.

“I don’t know how to mark Messi. It’s very difficult. What we do have are support lines, back-up, work we can put into action.”

Argentina manager Sergio Batista bore the disappointment of an expectant nation following the Group A draw with Bolivia on Friday.

Against the 2001 Copa America champions – who boast their own attacking talents in Radamel Falcao, Hugo Rodallega and Fredy Guarin – Batista wants his side to show more composure in their second match.

“The national team always has pressure, the more so now with the obligation of winning after the draw,” he said.

“Messi had a good first half but when we gets disorganised maybe he gets lost.”

“Even if we’d won, there were things that needed correcting and working on. That concerned me. We didn’t play the way we had in friendlies.”

 


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