The Argentinian Football Association (AFA) has set the stage for intriguing football clashes in March as they announce friendly matches against two African nations, Nigeria and Cote d’Ivoire. The matches are scheduled to take place in China.
Earlier reports had hinted at a potential friendly between Argentina and the Black Stars of Ghana, but it seems the South American giants have opted for encounters with the Super Eagles and the Elephants instead.
This development comes as a surprise, especially given the anticipation surrounding a matchup with Ghana. According to a report by Joy Sports, the Black Stars were initially expected to face Lionel Messi and his teammates on March 26.
The friendlies against Nigeria and Cote d’Ivoire will serve as a crucial test for Argentina as they aim to keep their team in prime condition ahead of the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifying games against Mali and the Central African Republic in June.
In the aftermath of Ghana’s 2023 African Cup of Nations campaign, where the team failed to secure a single victory and exited the tournament in the group stage, there is added scrutiny on the Black Stars’ preparations. The team will be eager to learn from Argentina’s resilience, who, despite losing their first game, went on to claim the World Cup.