Maradona pours scorn on Argentina coach after Iceland draw


"Playing like that, he can't come back to Argentina", the 1986 World Cup victor told Venezuelan television after Lionel Messi missed a penalty in the 1-1 Group D stalemate in Moscow. Given the Argentina captain's unspectacular record from the spot, some supporters expected Sergio Aguero, who opened the scoring, to take the penalty but Messi pulled rank.

Halldorsson believes Saturday's result puts Iceland in a strong position ahead of their remaining Group D matches against Nigeria and Croatia.

With Iceland having held Argentina to a 1-1 draw earlier on Saturday, Croatia took full advantage to move top of the group.

Argentine football legend Diego Maradona has criticised coach Jorge Sampaoli and says things must improve if he wants to keep his job.

"If Argentina continues playing like that, Sampaoli may not return to Argentina", Maradona said, according to El Comercio. "His gameplan was a disgrace. Knowing that all the Icelandic players are 6'3" we looked for headers at all the corners.

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"It was hard for us to break, it's not easy when a rival plays so far back", Messi told reporters. "If we win the next game all is possible for the qualification".

Maradona, working as a pundit for Italian and Venezuelan television at the tournament, spared the players any blame for their performance and instead accused the former Sevilla coach of failing to prepare properly for Russian Federation.

Right after the penalty save, Iceland's coach Heimir Hallgrimsson, high-fived goalkeeper coach Gudmundur Hreidarsson, as a sign of appreciation for their good preparatory work. "We can see that Iceland were better drilled than Argentina and that is a massive shame". They both played well, firm and reliable with no mistakes.

"Messi was their only outlet".

Maradona was seen puffing smoking even though smoking cigars and tobacco is banned at all the venues of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russian Federation, according to reports.