Argentina’s selección will have the chance to regain some level of bragging rights over their northern neighbors following their humiliating 3-0 loss against Brazil last November, in a repeat South American Superclásico that will take place in Australia on June 9th.
Granted, the game is only a friendly; however, the venue, Australia’s 100,000 capacity Melbourne Cricket Ground, which plays host to its namesake, Aussie Rules and soccer, means that coach Edgardo Bauza’s side will have the chance to prove themselves on a stage that dwarfs today’s usual attendance figures. Plus, considering the countries’ historic athletic rivalry, Argentines and Brazilians could make even a game of FIFA 17 a matter of life or death.
“There is 100 years of rivalry between Argentina and Brazil. These matches are always special,” said Bauza in a statement.
“Our priority is to prepare for the important World Cup qualifiers coming up in 2017 and this match and the camp will be extremely valuable,” he added.
When talking about the game yesterday, Victoria’s state sports minister John Eren said he thinks “it’s going to be a blockbuster. It’s going to be a sell-out.”
“We will have the best two teams clashing here at the MGC” he continued, and, according to the latest FIFA World Rankings table, he isn’t wrong: in spite of several slip-ups over the course of recent qualifying for the 2018 World Cup in Russia — Argentina currently sits 5th in the qualifying group and, were they to finish there, would have to dispute a spot in the World Cup in a Play-off match — La celeste y blanca still come in as no.1 in the world.
Brazil, who so comfortably dispatched Bauza’s team exactly three months ago in Belo Horizonte and enjoy a comfortable first place in the CONMEBOL group, follow in second.
Argentina does have history at the stadium, however, having recorded a Messi-inspired 1-0 win over Australia’s Socceroo’s back in 2007 – though, it’s safe to say that they’ll come up against trickier opponents this time out, with Neymar and co in full swing for the selecao.