By Johnny Edward
Argentina defender Federico Fazio believes Lionel Messi showed a different attitude in their 2-1 win over Nigeria last Tuesday.
Messi who was under pressure to get off the mark at the tournament after firing blanks in Argentina’s first two games opened the scoring and Marcos Rojo struck a late winner in a 2-1 victory for Jorge Sampaoli’s side, who sealed a place in the last 16 at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
Fazio said it was a change in mindset that was crucial for Argentina, who face France in the last 16 Saturday.
“I think we showed a different attitude towards the last game, not just from him [Messi] but from all the team, all the players,” he told a news conference ahead of their round of 16 clash against France on Saturday.
“I think we played well against Croatia [in a 3-0 loss] after all, but in this third game (against Nigeria), I think their goal did hurt us, but we all knew from the beginning all that was at stake and what would have happened if we lost.
“We saw a committed team, fighting together with a different attitude, and that was something which helped Leo too.”