Argentina's media lament another Copa flop

07 July 2011 05:30

Argentinian media on Thursday picked over the debris of a second straight draw at the Copa America which has left the hosts struggling to reach the quarter-finals.

Although the 14-times continental champions will be strongly favoured to see off Costa Rica in their final Group A match the country's newspapers were unforgiving after Wednesday's fortuitous draw with Colombia followed hot on the heels of a 1-1 scoreline against minnows Bolivia.

"Another poor performance by Argentina, drawing 0-0 aganist Colombia, who had the better chances and deserved to win," said the Clarin daily's website.

A Clarin correspondent reported that "here in Santa Fe something broke between the team and the fans" after the team served up more dire fare in their first ever competitive match at the north-eastern venue.

The correspondent added the team had left behind "a very poor image".

Other media were no less forgiving after a side spearheaded by world player of the year Lionel Messi failed to produce an improvement on their stale showing against the Bolivians.

"Another flop by the national team," wrote Diario Uno. "(Coach) Sergio Batista's team failed again and were booed from the field."

La Nacion added its voice to the avalanche of criticism.

"No rhythm. The team transformed hopes into disappointment in 90 minutes."

And the paper also echoed Clarin's warning that the team are losing public support ahead of a match with the Costa Ricans.

That game "will be decisive for the hopes of the national team which, playing as it is, is destroying all the fondness and respect people have for it around the country."

With Messi struggling to impress yet again in the national colours, Todo Noticias complained on its website that "Messi did not supply any magic" and noted the players had exited the field at the end "heads bowed amid a chorus of boos."

In contrast, the Colombian media saluted their side.

"Colombia shone brightly against Argentina," read a front page story in El Tiempo daily, which praised the 'cafeteros 'for "showing character and order" even if the paper added they should really have won.

"The way the fans booed Argentina off was a reflection of how one team did compared with the other.

For El Espectador, "one should be proud of the game that Colombia played. They had Argentina on the ropes."

Source: AFP