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“Not easy…” Argentina boss admits why Alejandro Garnacho is yet to play



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Credit: YouTube / Copa América

Alejandro Garnacho has yet to feature for Argentina since the conclusion of his domestic season with Manchester United.

Alejandro Garnacho was absolutely vital for Erik ten Hag during the Dutchman’s second full season as Manchester United manager.

The 19-year-old, after initially featuring as an impact substitute, started in all 38 of United’s final 30 fixtures, concluding with a brilliant 2-1 win over Manchester City in the FA Cup final.

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Garnacho netted the opening goal of the fixture in the first half after a big mix-up between goalkeeper Stephan Ortega and defender Joško Gvardiol left the young winger with an open net to slot into.

However, his impact at Old Trafford has not been recognised to the same degree on the international stage. Despite being called up to Argentina’s squad for the 2024 Copa America tournament, Garnacho has failed to see a single minute in either their pre-tournament friendly fixtures or their two group-stage fixtures.

Lisandro Martínez, his club compatriot, has cemented a starting position for La Albiceleste, but manager Lionel Scaloni has explained that it is not easy to play Garnacho as it means one of his first-choice forwards would have to drop out.

“[If] I need to put him in, someone else has to come out,” he explained. “It is very easy for you, but it is not easy for me to make that decision.”

Argentina have so far played both fixtures with Man City striker Julien Alvarez up front alongside Lionel Messi, while Angel Di Maria also featured from the start against Canada.

“We would love for him (Garnacho) to play because he is a boy who gives us a very good freshness, but when you make the game plan, he has the intention that maybe he can come in, and then the game changes,” Scaloni continued.

“He still hasn’t had the opportunity, but we hope to give it to him and that he can take advantage of it. If he does it well he makes it difficult for both the coach and his team-mate.”

Argentina will face Peru in their third and final group fixture on Sunday, 30 June. Having already qualified for the knockout stages, Garnacho may get his chance to shine in blue and white.

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