Argentina’s B side take on Panama in a friendly in Santa Fe tonight at 7pm local time, with manager Diego Maradona taking the opportunity to have a look at some of the players in his plans for the national side who are playing their football at home. Tuesday evening saw a press conference following the squad’s arrival in Paraná, where they’re preparing, in which Maradona confirmed his starting lineup.
Maradona stated that he’d specifically asked for the game to be played outside Buenos Aires and that, ‘after the [6-1 defeat] against Bolivia we’ve analysed things very thoroughly, and I believe we’re not going to let it happen again.’ He continued, ‘I want to show the players from the domestic league what it’s like to wear the national team’s shirt, so that they can get used to it and come to love it… when I was captain of the Selección and [Carlos] Bilardo gave me a call-up, the next day I’d turn up to Napoli’s training sessions with my chest puffed out, because I was part of my national side.’
For this reason as much any other, Maradona is eager that as many as possible of his players are given the chance to feature in Wednesday’s match, and will make changes during the game to that effect. The eleven who’ll be starting, though, as of Tuesday night were…
Argentina B vs Panama, international friendly, 20th May 2009 – expected starting XI (manager: Diego A. Maradona):
Matías Caruzzo —- Nicolás Otamendi —- Alexis Ferrero
Eduardo Salvio — Hernán Bernardello — Fabián Rinaudo — Matías De Federico
Daniel Montenegro (c)
José Sand —- Gonzalo Bergessio
HEGS will, of course, have the goals online on Wednesday night.