Near-invincible Argentina tackles Venezuela

Near-invincible Argentina tackles Venezuela

It frequently appears as if Argentina is running unopposed in the Copa America Centenario. Can the tournament’s surprise team be the one to offer a bit more resistance?

Venezuela receives its chance to upend La Albiceleste tonight. Nonetheless, handicappers aren’t exactly bullish on Rafael Dudamel’s squad. Online sports book gives Venezuela odds of +1400 to earn a berth in the semifinals. Argentina, on the other hand, enters as a 1.5-goal favorite.

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With Lionel Messi leading the charge, the Gauchos captured each of their three group games. Gerardo Martino’s crew boasts a field-best 10 goals, conceding one. The rich stand to get richer, too, as Messi will make his first start of the tourney. Argentina’s pre-eminent threat has spent only 74 minutes on the pitch in the past two weeks due to back pain.

Before you write off Los Vinotintos, however, take a hard look at those 1-0 triumphs over Uruguay and Jamaica. Think about the suffocating defense and keeper Dan Hernandez’s consistently great work. In the end, though, Argentina still seems primed to contest the U.S. on Tuesday in Houston.


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