Argentina manager Jorge Sampaoli has added fuel to the fire as concerns over his tenure with La Albiceleste continue to grow after asking for Lionel Messi’s approval over a substitution in their narrow win over Nigeria on Tuesday.
Despite the Super Eagles pulling level through a Victor Moses penalty, Argentina booked their place into the next round of the World Cup when defender Marcus Rojo popped up with a strike just before the final whistle.
But when the game was tied at 1-1 the Argentina manager was mulling over changes he could make to win the game in Saint Petersburg.
Rather than trusting his own judgement about the substitution, or even consulting with his coaching staff, Sampaoli opted to ask Messi what he thought about bringing Sergio Agüero off the bench.
“Should I sub in Kun [Agüero]?” Sampaoli appeared to ask La Albiceleste’s captain minutes before the Manchester City striker was brought on, as seen in a video from Argentine outlet Ole.
The 58-year-old manager has already come under heavy criticism at the World Cup, with rumors circulating that the Argentina players have started to take control of the dressing room due to Sampaoli’s tactics.
Argentina will now face France in the first knockout stage of the competition after finishing behind Croatia – who take on Denmark in the Last 16 of the World Cup – in Group D.