World Cup: Croatia, the Day’s First Heavyweight, Is Struggling Against Morocco

Rory Smith

Slowly, quietly, Argentina’s players made their way back to their training camp in Doha, away from Lusail, away from a place they will never want to see again but where they will hope, more than anything, to return.

Nobody on that journey wanted to talk. The only voice was that of Lionel Messi, urging his devastated teammates to remain united, reminding them that even after defeat against Saudi Arabia, their fate is still in their hands. When they reached the hotel, Lionel Scaloni and his coaching staff told the players that, for once, their postgame meal was optional. If they did not feel like talking, they could stay in their rooms, to contemplate, to grieve.

Argentina’s loss to Saudi Arabia may, in time, come to be seen as the…

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