Jorge Sampaoli, Argentina Part Ways as National Team Head Coach

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistJuly 15, 2018

Argentina's coach Jorge Sampaoli gestures  during the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between France and Argentina at the Kazan Arena in Kazan on June 30, 2018. (Photo by Roman Kruchinin / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS        (Photo credit should read ROMAN KRUCHININ/AFP/Getty Images)
ROMAN KRUCHININ/Getty Images

The Argentine Football Association (AFA) finally announced Jorge Sampaoli will not continue as national team manager on Sunday, more than two weeks after their disappointing World Cup exit at the hands of eventual champions France. 

The decision was revealed via Twitter:

Per Goal's Ryan Benson, Sampaoli had only been in charge since last year, with little going right for the team in that span.

The Albiceleste lost two of their last four friendlies heading into the World Cup, including a 6-1 thrashing at the hands of 2010 champions Spain. Things only got worse once they got to Russia, however.

Iceland held them to a 1-1 draw before Croatia completely outplayed them, winning 3-0. Argentina were desperate for a win in Nigeria, with Marcos Rojo bailing them out late in the contest.

That set up a round-of-16 clash with France, who advanced after a spectacular 4-3 win. 

After the tournament, there were plenty who had sympathy for the manager:

Sampaoli didn't help matters with his team selections, however. Juventus star Paulo Dybala barely featured in Russia, even when the team needed a goal, and Inter Milan's Mauro Icardi wasn't even selected for the tournament. 

He also didn't select Geronimo Rulli and instead played little-known Franco Armani and Willy Caballero in goal. The latter blundered away in the group stages.

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