There was little to suggest from Argentina’s pre-Olympic friendlies that La Albiceleste would be celebrating a third gold medal and after Thursday night’s defeat to Portugal, that has never looked more obvious.
Julio Olarticoechea named what appeared an odd starting eleven with Lisandro Magallán at right back and José Luis Gómez pushed further forward and although the latter was again Argentina’s best player, the side was disjointed and almost devoid of a midfield able to keep possession.
Portugal started the far brighter and had the ball in the net early only to be ruled out for offside but Gerónimo Rulli needed to remain alert to ensure that Argentina didn’t concede in the opening stages.
Gradually Olarticoechea’s side improved and half chances for Correa, Cuesta and Gómez provided flashes of danger to the Portuguese goal without being the result of any real consistent threat.
The best chance came minutes after half time when West Ham United’s latest acquisition, Jonathan Calleri raced clear only to see his chipped finish over Bruno Varela bounce off the top of the crossbar.
— Selección Argentina (@Argentina) August 4, 2016