When Poland faces off against Argentina on Wednesday in the last group stage fixture, it will be a matchup that pins two great players against one another: Lionel Messi and Robert Lewandowski.
However, Polish manager Czeslaw Michniewicz believes it’s a clash between Poland and Argentina, not Lewandowski and Messi. This matchup is much more than these two great players as the stakes are high.
“Ever since the groups were drawn, the whole world has been waiting to see this match,” Michniewicz told reporters (h/t Reuters). “It’s a match between Poland and Argentina, not between Lewandowski and Messi.
“It’s not tennis where they’re going to play one-on-one and everyone will wait to see who serves an ace or a beautiful lob. Robert needs his teammates, so does Messi.”
Poland tops the standings with four points and can advance to the knockout stages by winning or drawing against Argentina. But they would be knocked out by a defeat and a victory by Saudi Arabia over Mexico.
Meanwhile, Argentina can advance with a draw and a win, but it what be more convenient for them to secure the win and top Group C considering the second-place team will have a Round of 16 matchup against the reigning champions France.
The CONMEBOL side fell to France in 2018, so if they can avoid them, it’s best they do so by beating Poland and securing a more favorable matchup in the Round of 16.