A competition the size of a World Cup demands maximum concentration from the players, who need to be focused on fighting for the most important football title on the planet 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
At least, that’s what fans think. And it is also for this reason that midfielder Rodrigo de Paul, from Atlético de Madrid, has been “stoned” and blamed on social networks for the delicate situation in which Argentina got into in Qatar-2022.
According to different media outlets in Argentina, the Atlético de Madrid player spent the night before the surprising 2-1 defeat against Saudi Arabia scrolling through social media and enjoying sensual photos of his girlfriend, singer and actress Tini Stoessel.
The unexpected negative result in the debut complicated the life of the team led by Lionel Messi, who, if they also lose to Mexico, today, starting at 4 pm (Brasília time), at the Iconic stadium, in Lusail, will be eliminated from the World Cup with a round of anticipation.
It is not new that Argentines have been on top of De Paul because of his relationship with the former protagonist of the series “Violetta” and one of the most listened to singers in the country.
The couple has been together since May and has never been apart. It is not unusual for the midfielder to use Atlético and the national team’s matches to pledge his love to his girlfriend. In Argentina’s preparation for the Cup, the player engraved three letters T on his boot, in honor of the partnership.
Also in June, the journalist Rodrigo Lussich, from the TV program “Socios del Especçou, had already disclosed that Messi and Diego Simeone, coach of Atleti, had advised De Paul to reduce the public exposure of their relationship.
The fear of the duo is that this alleged excess could be interpreted by fans as a loss of focus on football. No sooner said than done.
Other Argentina players also date or are married to celebrities. Striker Paulo Dybala, for example, has been with singer Oriana Sabatini since 2018. Messi’s own wife, Antonella Roccuzzo, is now a globally recognized personality. But these relationships do not generate any kind of questioning in Argentina.
De Paul is 29 years old and has been with the national team since 2018. He was a key player in winning the 2021 Copa América, the first Albiceleste title in almost three decades, and has a captive place in coach Lionel Scaloni’s lineups.
For the second match at the World Cup, Argentina’s coach should promote some changes in the team. The arrival of defensive midfielder Enzo Fernández and striker Julián Álvarez in the places of Leandro Paredes and Papu Gómez is almost certain. But there is also a chance that the Atleti midfielder will be benched after his subpar performance against Saudi Arabia.
The Qatar Cup is the first to be held in the Middle East and features seven of the eight teams that have already lifted the cup. For the second consecutive edition, four-time champion Italy failed to qualify and is low.
The tournament is being played at the end of the year, and not in its usual period (June and July), because of the heat in the host country during the height of summer in the Northern Hemisphere.
This is the last edition of the FIFA competition with the format that has been used since France-1998. From the next World Cup, organized by the United States, Canada and Mexico, there will be 48 participants in the dispute for the title.
World Cup – Group C
22/11 – Argentina 1 x 2 Saudi Arabia, Iconic, in Lusail
22/11 – Mexico 0 x 0 Poland, 974, in Doha
Today at 10am – Poland v Saudi Arabia, Education City in Al-Rayyan
Today at 4pm – Argentina vs Mexico, Iconic, in Lusail
11/30, at 4pm – Poland vs Argentina, 974, in Doha
11/30, at 4pm – Saudi Arabia x Mexico, Iconic, in Lusail