The kids are all-out

Batista's boys are inconsolable
Batista's boys are inconsolable

The 2009 World Youth Cup, when it’s played in Egypt, will not include the nation who’ve claimed the last two titles. Sergio Batista’s boys finished bottom of the final group of the Sudamericano Sub 20 in Venezuela, without a single win. A 1-0 loss to Colombia on Sunday evening ensured the embarrassment was complete.

After disappointing previous results, Argentina had to beat Colombia and hope for results elsewhere to go their way, but in the end they couldn’t even keep up their own end of the bargain. Paralysed by the pressure they’d brought upon themselves, the kids could barely create a dangerous situation in the first half, and the only reason things were still deadlocked at the break was that Colombia were just as bad.

After Franco Zuculini had wasted a decent chance early in the second half, the advantage swung Colombia’s way in the 64th minute when Ricardo Chará headed in from a cross. Argentina seemed as if they already knew the game was up, and all that remained was Emiliano Insúa’s sending-off for a second yellow card as the match drew to a close. For the first time since 1987, the World Youth Cup’s most successful side won’t be present at the event.

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