Nigeria's Ahmed Musa challenges Lionel Messi as Argentina hero

Cesc Fabregas Lionel Messi

Former Barcelona star Cesc Fabregas has figured out the main reason as to why Lionel Messi was not able to make an impact in the 3-0 loss against Croatia.

1 - This was Argentina's heaviest defeat in the first round group stages of a World Cup tournament since losing 1-6 to Czechoslovakia in 1958.

The Real Madrid star has stolen the early headlines in Russian Federation with four goals in his opening two games, including a hat-trick against Spain.

"I have to hail my players, they gave everything, they tried what they could but it was just not our day in so many ways".

Writing for the Irish Independent, Giles said: 'Neymar has turned up in Russian Federation with the weight of a nation on his shoulders but from what I can see, he wants to win the World Cup for himself and not his team.

Fabregas says that Ronaldo's four goals in two games "have come from set-pieces, penalties or mistakes".

Whereas Ronaldo netted a hat-trick in Portugal's 3-3 draw with Spain before scoring their victor against Morocco, Messi has floundered in front of goal - missing a penalty against Iceland before putting in an underwhelming display in Nizhny Novgorod.

The 55-year-old, speaking soon after Argentina's 1-1 draw with Iceland, pointed out how he would do a better job than Chelsea second choice Willy Caballero.

"Whenever I play against Argentina, or whenever Messi is playing against me, I score", said the 25-year-old.

It ensured Nigeria, with three points, went second in Group D, behind Croatia who have already qualified after successive victories, but ahead of Argentina and Iceland, both on one. "He is one of the big names in Russian Federation who has made a strong start to this World Cup, in terms of goals, with four so far".

Jorge Sampaoli's men are facing a group-stage exit in Russian Federation after collecting just one point from their opening two games.

"I'm not that surprised though, I've been saying it since before the World Cup, there was no chance they would win it because of that defence".

Musa said that his goals were made possible by collective efforts and thanked the team and coah Gernot Rohr for finding him worthy to start in Games.

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