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Would the World Cup miss Argentina?

September 9th, 2009
10:03 AM ET

They are football's royalty, the marquee players whose almost super human ability on the ball wins cups and championships; their faces adorn billboards and magazine covers from China to Colombia.

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/09/09/messi.art.gi.jpg caption="Lionel Messi could miss out on the 2010 World Cup if his team Argentina fail to improve."]

But, amazingly, the likes of Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Thierry Henry may all be absent from the World Cup finals in South Africa.

Tell us: Will you miss the star players at next year's World Cup? Or do they need to make way for new talent?

Qualification for next year's tournament has thrown up a host of surprise results with a number of top teams, including Argentina, Portugal, France and Egypt all in serious danger of missing the tournament.

The highest profile strugglers are Diego Maradona's Argentina, who currently sit fourth in South American qualifying, two points ahead of rivals Ecuador and Colombia.

Would you miss Argentina at the World Cup finals? Read more of this story at CNN.com's Football Fan Zone.

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soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. Jennifer

    Of course the World Cup will miss these key countries. It's a matter of tradition and of course, pride and nationalism for Argentina, Portugal, and France. Over the years they have been consistent teams in international tournaments, producing the best of the best players, and garnering thousands and thousands of fans not only from their countries but from all over the world as well – admirers of football. It'll be different without these countries BUT – it will be a good thing. Personally, I think that the World Cup should finally be a competition between countries other than the ones that always get top spot. It should be about the best teams making it out on top because they deserve it, and it will be a refreshing change to a tournament that has always produced the same results year after year after year.

    So the best of luck to all teams, but hopefully things will change up for South Africa 2010!

    September 9, 2009 at 11:11 am | Reply
  2. wilfred Anetor

    i think it´s time for other countries to feature on the fifa world cup tornament and that will bring new flavour on the tornament,it also show how football playing has grown to a higher level ,all countries can equally play good football,there is no one country that has sole right to fifa world cup,it is merit through hard work and quality football.
    i would not miss any country,what iam looking forward to is good football.

    September 9, 2009 at 11:39 am | Reply
  3. NLG

    Wow, what an acute view of world football. All of Brazil will be there, which means Kaka, Ronaldinho, etc, Spain, England, Germany, the Netherlands, and Italy have a ton of stars as well. When you need to throw in a clearly-past-his-prime player like Thierry Henri (who I love) and then mention a minnow like Cameroon to point out that Eto'o won't be there to strengthen your argument, you know you're grasping at straws.

    Is this what bored bloggers are reduced to: stating an incorrect fact, then write about it as if it were actually true? Get a real job or a true issue and stop wasting my time.

    The world cup is usually a coming out party for new stars, not a coronation of existing ones. Get real. The real story would be these perennial power-houses missing the tournament, not their stars.

    September 9, 2009 at 12:10 pm | Reply
  4. David Blackburn

    1. Argentina will almost certainly be in South Africa.
    2. In football (soccer), a single star has far less influence on a team's performance than in almost any other team sport.
    3. A star on a poor team looks like an average player.
    4. A team of really good players that play a free flowing attacking style is much more fun to watch than a super player like Ronaldo on a mediocre Portugal team.

    September 9, 2009 at 12:12 pm | Reply
  5. Terry Reed

    You bet Argentina will be missed, but Maradona WILL NOT. Be smart Argentina, drop the bum before he ruins your chances of making the World Cup. You just can't take this clown seriously.
    Good Luck

    September 9, 2009 at 1:34 pm | Reply
  6. Austine Audu

    1.it will be a pity if these countries are not in South Africa for the first ever African world cup.
    2.Nevertheless, contries like brazil,england,spain,italy,others will be there.
    The world cup glamour will still be there.
    3.I believe that no matter what they will still be there with enough hardwork with goodluck on their side.
    4.I wish them the very best

    September 9, 2009 at 1:36 pm | Reply
  7. RaiderNation

    World football will be different, as Tom Brady will return from his injury to lead the Patriots to yet another Super Bowl. How Argentina could take on quality teams like the Patriots and Steelers with even a chance of success is a mystery.

    Regrettably, Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal squad will suffer yet another loss at the hands of the San Diego Chargers, whose linebacker Shawn Merriman will mistake Ronaldo for Tila Tequila.

    September 9, 2009 at 1:40 pm | Reply
  8. Chris Irvine

    Football is a team sport, the World Cup is a competition. The fact that some of these nations may miss out means they are not good enough as a collective to be there or that the reliance on these so called 'superstar' is misplaced.

    The teams that have reached the Finals have earned their right to attend. In particular those teams from Europe, Africa and South America, I do question the inclusion of the teams from North America and parts of Asia, as they just are not to the level or standard that should be expected at a World cup.

    So, tonight lets all cheer Serbia, Paraguay and Hungary to knock out these 'has been' teams.

    September 9, 2009 at 2:01 pm | Reply
  9. Lala

    Seriously, who cares if Messi doesn't make it? He already won a Triple Crown and the Champions League is staring again. If I want to see Messi, I'll watch La Liga and Goal TV.
    The World Cup is a different story. Like Mr. Blackburn says, it's not about stars, it's about a team playing good football. Except a country can't switch a players' citizenship the way Madrid can buy Ronaldo. That's where the glory is.
    Unless you're from France, who cares if France doesn't make it? In any event, it means that there are some countries who are playing so well that your so-called "key countries" didn't make the cut.
    That's awesome. That means good football is a-coming.
    What would be the point of a World Cup if you already knew the winner? Plus, seriously, the article is pretty disrespectful to some teams. Italy is your current world champion. Brazil has always been and will continue to be a football nation. And Spain? England? What are you even talking about?

    September 9, 2009 at 2:04 pm | Reply
  10. Ayodele

    Nigeria will be missed, but really, they don't deserve to be there

    September 9, 2009 at 2:06 pm | Reply
  11. ADEGIFT

    Best of luck to all teams most especially Africa for South Africa 2010!

    September 9, 2009 at 2:09 pm | Reply
  12. SP2

    I WILL MISS THEM SOOO MUCH. I LOVE MESSIIIIIIIIIIIIII~~
    saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad = 🙁

    September 9, 2009 at 2:12 pm | Reply
  13. Diego

    Not Cristiano, Im tired of that guy!

    September 9, 2009 at 2:37 pm | Reply
  14. De Marchi

    As a Brazilian, I really hope Maradona has to follow the games on TV, from Argentina. And I would prefer countries such as Gabon or Leichenstein at the world cup instead of Argentina simply because they won the 1978 cup in a dishonest way. Dirty teams, dirty game. Let's clean football (soccer). Keep Argentina home!
    We will not cry for you Argentina!

    September 9, 2009 at 2:39 pm | Reply
  15. Penye

    These big teams will really missed especially us who are in South Africa who would like to see those stars perfoming . But you cant rule them out because soccer is full of surprise .

    September 9, 2009 at 2:53 pm | Reply
  16. Guruplanet

    I will miss Portugal in the world cup. Apart from having been born there, I think it’s a miracle that a country with just over 10M population has been able to stay competitive for this long. I think they are still one of the world’s best from the results obtained 2004,6,8 the notable difference is the new coach. I read in a Spanish paper that Portugal has 10 national players worth over 200M USD of course ½ of that being Ronaldo. No doubt world soccer is becoming more competitive by leaps and bounds, no one can say they are a sure bet as exemplified by the recent Confederations Cup and some of the World Cup qualifying groups. Anyway even if they were to advance I would not expect them to win since UEFA and FIFA try to influence who gets to the finals. After all can you imagine a semi-final without a Brazil, Germany, Italy, or France since in the end it’s about money through ratings? I love underdogs and for me watching the little country sticking it to the power houses is the icing on the cake of Euro and World Cup. Portugal and the Check Republic were one of the few countries that had the ability to do this. They had to earn every single point of their advancement and for this will be missed.

    September 9, 2009 at 3:11 pm | Reply
  17. Guruplanet

    I will miss Portugal in the world cup. Apart from having been born there, I think it’s a miracle that a country with just over 10M population has been able to stay competitive for this long. I think they are still one of the world’s best from the results obtained 2004,6,8 the notable difference is the new coach. I read in a Spanish paper that Portugal has 10 national players worth over 200M USD of course ½ of that being Ronaldo. No doubt world soccer is becoming more competitive by leaps and bounds, no one can say they are a sure bet as exemplified by the recent Confederations Cup and some of the World Cup qualifying groups. Anyway even if they were to advance I would not expect them to win since UEFA and FIFA try to influence who gets to the finals. After all can you imagine a semi-final without a Brazil, Germany, Italy, or France since in the end it’s about money through ratings? I love underdogs and for me watching the little country sticking it to the power houses is the icing on the cake of Euro and World Cup. Portugal and the Czech Republic were one of the few countries that had the ability to do this. They had to earn every single point of their advancement and for this will be missed.

    September 9, 2009 at 3:19 pm | Reply
  18. Nicholas Mbogu

    Will the world cup miss Argentina? Yes and No. It will miss Argentina if we are used to believing that tradition is something permanent. In this cas, Argentina and other world big names in football would seem to be the traditional guests and would be missed if they are not there. They are always and will always be there, in the traditionalist mind.
    No. There is only one thing that is permanent in this life: change. Change brings in dynamism and with new countries and teams appearing in the world cup in South Africa 2010, we would be able to see the dynamism of nature and the fact that there is no permanent seat in the world cup as it is in the United Nation. This idea of permanent Seat and Permanent members is one of the crippling sickness of the United Nation. It is a structure of injustice and so the World cup does not need such a permanent position. It is not a democratic instrument but an instrument of oppression and dictatorship and injustice. It is and has to be by merit and whoever works hard should earn a place. That is the one reason, why Argentina would not be missed.

    September 9, 2009 at 3:22 pm | Reply
  19. anna

    As a football fan I will miss players like Messi, Ribery or Ronaldo, but football is a team effort and if their teams miss the qualification, maybey they are not as good as they seem to be.

    September 9, 2009 at 3:53 pm | Reply
  20. Angi

    no more RONALDO please....but i'm gonna miss messi =(

    September 9, 2009 at 8:47 pm | Reply
  21. BaffaMustapha

    if the Question is Will we miss Argentina or any other big name country in the world cup? then really,there is no better answer than,we simply want the good teams to continue to succeed,rather than to welcome new talented teams who have worked hard for what they have archived which is sending the good-old teams back home.

    September 11, 2009 at 3:49 pm | Reply
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