Thursday, 19 October, 2017

Argentina manager Jorge Sampaoli says Lionel Messi's excitement a boost for team

Sampaoli keen to build around'very excited Messi in Argentina team Sampaoli keen to build around'very excited Messi in Argentina team Getty Images
Carol Daniels | 03 June, 2017, 07:27

Earlier, Sevilla officially confirmed Sampaoli's departure after the Argentinian's one season in charge saw them finish fourth in LaLiga.

Jorge Sampaoli has parted ways with Sevilla after just a single season at the helm in order to return to his homeland and take up the reins with the Argentina national team.

Argentina is now fifth in qualifying - only the top four get direct spots at Russian Federation 2018.

He is thrilled to have 29-year-old Barcelona forward Messi on his team having faced him in the 2015 Copa America final when his Chile side upset Argentina on penalties. "There are some very good teams trying to do the same thing as us", added Sampaoli, who has signed a deal until the 2022 World Cup. "I talked to him and he's very excited". It's a boost for us to see how excited he is with this new stage (for Argentina).

But now after landing his "dream job" - his third in 18 months - Sampaoli will be tasked with leading Argentina through to the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation.

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Rumours had swirled that Sampaoli would be taking the job after Edgardo Bauza was sacked in April with less than a year in the role.

"Messi? We want the best player in the world to feel happy here", he began.

Argentina face Uruguay next in Montevideo on August 31.

"The call for Mauro Icardi is related to the performance in his team", he said.

A surprising selection in Argentina's latest squad - to face Brazil and Singapore in friendlies later this month - was Mauro Icardi. The fulfilling of a dream that I've craved for a long time.

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