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26.06.2010 19:12

Messi vs Marquez for a spot in the last eight


Leo Messi and Rafa Marquez go head-to-head in Sunday evening’s last 16 game in Johannesburg as Argentina take on Mexico in a repeat of their clash at the same stage four years ago.

Messi and Marquez are the first two Barca players to figure in the last 16, with Brazil playing Chile on Monday and Spain facing Portugal on Tuesday and the match up between the Group B winners and the Group A runners up promises to be a great game with both the Barca players key to their teams’ hopes of making the quarter finals.

Messi: “the best is still to come”

marquesss.JPGMessi was one of the best players of the group stages, though he’s still to get his name on the scoresheet, but he insists: “the best is still to come. I’m convinced we’ll make the final”. Against Mexico, he’ll face not just his Barca colleague Rafa Marquez – who’s been employed as a midfield stopper just in front of the back four- but also a Mexico team who have committed more fouls than any other team through to this stage and already picked up eight yellow cards. Watch out Leo!

Marquez on target last time round

argen2006.jpgFour years ago in Germany when the two teams met at the same stage, Rafa Marquez put the Mexicans ahead with an early goal, only for Crespo to equalise for Argentina and Maxi Rodriguez to win the game with an extra time super strike. Messi sat that game out on the bench, but on Sunday night he is sure to be the key player as the two teams battle for a quarter final spot against either Germany or England next weekend.
Messi vs Marquez for a spot in the last eight
Stats on Argentina’s side
The two teams have met 14 times over the last 20 years and the Argentineans have a clear edge, having won 7 times, lost just twice and drawn the other 5 games.

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