5 Mins to KO: National anthems underway, it’s almost time for the second game of today’s football frenzy.
10 Mins to KO: Also worth keeping your eyes on the stands, as Iceland will bring an incredible atmosphere. Their thunder clap got everyone talking two years ago and it’s almost time to bring it to the world stage.
15 Mins to KO: In a group alongside Croatia and Nigeria, who play later on Saturday, it’s difficult to predict who will emerge. Argentina are the favourites to top the group but second-spot is certainly up for grabs. If Iceland get a result today, it will be wide open.
Messi has scored four and assisted one of Argentina’s last seven goals at the World Cup finals.
Gylfi Sigurdsson is Iceland’s biggest attacking threat, boasting 19 goals, but they will have to be strong defensively. That could leave Finnbogason, leading the line, feeding on scraps and the central midfielders will have to get stuck in to quell attacks from the back. Gunnarson, Iceland’s skipper, could be crucial.
While Messi may be the star of the show, it would be incredibly unwise to deem Argentina as a one-man team. Aguero has proven himself to be one of the deadliest strikers in European football in recent years, Angel Di Maria remains a threat either through the middle or out wide.
This will be the first ever encounter between Argentina and Iceland.
Iceland have a number of familiar names in their ranks after catching the eye in Euro 2016, including Gylfi Sigurdsson, Gudmundsson and Gunnarsson. It’s a different calire of challenge for Iceland in this match though, with many of the players coming up against stars they would have only dreamed of playing a few years ago.
Jorge Sampaoli named his Argentina line-up yesterday, so there’s no surprises in that aspect. Aguero gets the nod ahead of Higuain, while there is plenty of attacking flair that can be introduced off the bench if required. Messi, named Player of the Tournament four years ago, will have the eyes of the world on him.
Iceland, meanwhile, have already made history by becoming the smallest nation to qualify for the World Cup. After their excellent performances at Euro 2016, many will hope for similar updates from the newcomers but the odds are certainly stacked against them against a side of Argentina’s calibre.
After losing the 2014 World Cup final to Germany, Argentina have high hopes to go all the way in Russia. This could also be Lionel Messi’s last chance of World Cup glory and expectations have risen following Cristiano Ronaldo’s stunning hat-trick against Spain on Friday.
Hello and welcome to live text commentary of the Group D match between Argentina and Iceland at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
|Game||Argentina vs Iceland|
|Date||Saturday, June 16|
|Time||2:00pm BST / 9:00am ET|
|Stream (US only)||fubo TV (7-day free trial)|
Argentina look weaker then they did four years ago with relative unknowns Nicolas Tagliafico and Maximiliano Meza coming into the starting line-up. Aguero is preferred to Higuain or Dybala for this game against Iceland.
Confirmed Argentina XI: Willy Caballero; Nicolas Tagliafico, Nicolas Otamendi, Marcos Rojo, Eduardo Salvio; Javier Mascherano, Lucas Biglia; Maximiliano Meza, Lionel Messi, Angel Di Maria; Sergio Aguero.
Argentina subs: Nahuel Guzman, Franco Armani, Giovani Lo Celso, Federico Fazio, Cristian Pavon, Gabriel Mercado, Paulo Dybala, Cristian Ansaldi, Gonzalo Higuain, Enzo Perez, Marcos Acuna, Ever Banega.
The perennial underdogs lineup similarly to how they did at Euro 2016. Talisman Gylfi Sigurdsson will have to be at his best if they are to get anything today.
Confirmed Iceland XI: Hannes Haldorsson; Kari Arnason, Birkir Mar Saevarsson, Ragnar Sigurdsson, Hordur Bjorgvin Magnusson; Johann Berg Gudmundsson, Aron Gunnarsson, Emil Hallfredsson; Bikir Bjarnason, Alfred Finnbogason, Gylfi Sigurdsson.
Iceland subs: Frederik Schram, Runar Alex Runarsson, Rurik Gislason, Bjorn Sigurdarson, Arnor Ingvi Traustason, Samuel Kari Freidjonsson, Albert Gudmundsson, Jon Dadi Bodvarsson, Ari Freyr Skulason, Olafur Ingi Skulason, Holmar Om Eyjolfsson, Sverrir Ingi Ingason.
TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch
In the United States (US), the game can be watched live and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial).
New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser.
|US TV channel||Online stream|
|FOX / Telemundo||fubo TV (7-day free trial)|
In the United Kingdom (UK), the game can be watched live on TV on ITV or streamed live online using the ITV Player.
|UK TV channel||Online stream|