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Brad Friedel

Brad Friedel

How Vertonghen can stop Messi – Friedel

Tags: Argentina, Belgium, India, Sony Handycam ®

Belgium will be full of confidence going into the Argentina game. That game against the U.S. would have given Belgium a lot of encouragement.

Where they’re obviously very strong is Mr. Number 10, Lionel Messi. But if Argentina does possess a weakness, it’s at the back.

My friend and teammate Jan Vertonghen will have his hands full today dealing with Messi, who causes problems for everybody he faces. If he goes over on the right hand side, which he likes to do, Messi’s always going to want to cut inside. And listen, this is so much easier said than done, but you want to try and force him wide and get him onto his right foot.

In saying that, even when you force him wide, he’s so quick to cut back to his left that it’s difficult to stop sometimes so Jan is going to need help from the central defender, and he’s also going to need help from a central midfielder, and he’s going to need help from the left midfielder!

You need to do a little bit of what Switzerland did, and just try to swarm around him and limit his options. All that is much easier said than done.

Naturally I want Belgium to win because I know their players. For CONCACAF reasons I’d love to see Costa Rica beat Holland, but I think the Dutch will squeeze by in a tight game.

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