Argentina and Barcelona star Lionel Messi might well carry the hopes of a nation at the World Cup, but he had to play the role of photographer for one fan.
The mystery fan was clearly not interested in a snap with the World's second best footballer, instead opting for a picture with his Barca team-mate Javier Mascherano.
Though Mascherano is a fine player in his own right, the picture quickly went viral, after the Twitter account '2014 World Cup' posted the image with the caption: "This guy must be a huge Javier Mascherano fan".
Alejandro Sabella's men touched down in Belo Horizonte on Monday night, ahead of their World Cup opener against Bosnia and Herzegovina on Sunday.
ARGENTINA: Group F team profile
ARGENTINA: Group F team profile
1/5 How they qualified
Argentina won the CONMEBOL, ahead of Radamel Falcao’s Colombia and Alexis Sanchez’s Chile. La Albiceleste had trouble getting a result against Venezuela and beating Bolivia, albeit after a 4-1 thrashing of Chile at the opening game. However, the team managed to bounce back with a 2-1 win against Colombia which initiated a 14-match unbeaten streak that led them to the top of the table, even though they fell short against Uruguay in the end. This is the third time Argentina have won the preliminary competition, amassing nine wins and five draws in 16 matches. After setting the pace, the two-time World Cup winners had no problem finishing first whilst tallying 35 goals and only surrendering 15.
Alejandro Sabella faced quite a lot of scrutiny over bad results in the early stages of the CONMEBOL. However, he managed to restore trust at the end of the qualifiers and is now aiming for at least the semi-finals. The former Leeds United player is a manager that insists on team unity and with a Copa Libertadores under his belt he might be looking for an impressive World Cup run.
3/5 Star Player
Lionel Messi – Who else? Albeit a season that included injuries, the 26-year-old managed to score 28 La Liga goals and finish second on the goal scoring table. He is still La Albiceleste’s deadliest weapon that knows how to convert almost all of his chances. With his manager’s full support and Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero on his side, the Barcelona striker could finally be on track for World Cup glory.
4/5 Emerging Talent
Although Ezequiel Lavezzi is 29-years-old, he will be playing in his first ever World Cup. The winger’s impressive shooting skills and speed contributed greatly in Paris Saint-Germain’s second consecutive League title and will be much needed for Argentina’s quest for glory.
5/5 How they will line up: (4-3-3)
Romero; Rojo, Fernandez, Basanta, Zabaleta; Mascherano, Di Maria, Gago; Aguero, Higuain, Messi.
There is much pressure on Messi to deliver at this tournament, despite his unrivalled club career, Messi has not performed on the international stage and can count his Olympic medal from Beijing as the only honour playing for La Albiceleste.
Messi has just one goal in eight appearances across two World Cups, though he did score 10 goals as Argentina finished top in the South American qualifying campaign.
It was also revealed that Messi would be sharing with Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero at the tournament, while Mascherano will also be sharing with a City player, Pablo Zabaleta.Reuse content