Worrying about Lionel Messi is ‘impossible not to do’ admits Brazil manager Fernando Diniz

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Brazil will be counting on the packed crowd at the Maracana to help them bounce back after consecutive defeats.

The rivalry between Argentina and Brazil will be at its peak on Wednesday as Lionel Messi’s Argentina will take on the under-fire hosts Brazil in a CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying game in Rio de Janeiro. Ahead of the game, Brazil’s caretaker manager Fernando Diniz has expressed his apprehensions about facing Lionel Messi, claiming facing the 8-time Ballon d’Or is a cause of ‘worry’.

Brazil, who have won the World Cup five times, will be counting on the packed crowd at the Maracana to help them bounce back. They have lost two qualifying games in a row for the first time in their history.

With several players such as Neymar, Vinicius, and others out injured, caretaker coach Fernando Diniz will have to go with a youthful lineup against Argentina, but one he can be sure will remain true to Brazil’s identity, even against a star such as Messi.

Talking about the match and their plans to stop Messi, Diniz appeared wary but confident. “Sure, you can’t not worry about a player of that magnitude. But we have to play our game as we try to contain all the creative capacity he has. Dealing with Messi is obviously different and you have to worry. It’s impossible not to worry about a player of his stature and the decision-making power he has,” Diniz told a press conference.

According to Diniz, the Maracana crowd is expected to be warm and enthusiastic. The Selecao fans will be eager to avenge its Copa America final loss to Argentina from two years ago.

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Brazil has been winless in their last three matches, dropping to fifth place in the South American table. Diniz’s team have seven points from five matches following Thursday’s 2-1 loss to Colombia.

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