Italia are set to face the South American country of Bolivia in the Champions League semi-final on Wednesday, as they prepare for their first home game of the season against a side who are currently unbeaten in four matches.
The clash will be the first time Argentina have met the Bolivians since their 2-0 victory over Uruguay on May 27, as the country continues to battle the Zika virus.
“It’s a big test for Argentina,” head coach Andoni Zubizarreta told reporters.
“Bolivia have a lot of positives.
We know they are good at home.
We’ve been through a tough time but we’re ready to face them.”
Zubizarrenta added that Argentina have only played a handful of matches, with only one away fixture against Brazil in 2016.
“We had the last game of last year against Argentina in La Guadalajara, so we know the game well,” he said.
“They have had a good game against Uruguay and I’m sure we will have the same.”
For the first leg, we’ll have to wait for the first game of next season but we have the experience of the first one.
“Bolivians will look to bounce back from a disappointing 3-1 defeat by Peru in the quarter-finals of the Copa America, and will be without two key players, in the form of goalkeeper Andres Guardado and midfielder Luis Felipe Sosa.”
I don’t think we will be satisfied,” said Zubizara.”
The two players that are out are Guardado who was injured in the first half, and Felipe who had an illness in the game against Peru.
“Our players will be disappointed and our players will fight.
We will continue to play our game.”
Alvaro Armas: ‘I was very nervous’ after defeat against Peru article With the Copas America away, it will be Argentina’s first visit to the South America since March 2016, but Zubizaro said he has no regrets.
“No, I didn’t think so, not at all,” he added.
“When we started the campaign we were in the Confederations Cup.
We had to win the Confederates Cup, and we won it.”
You can’t be too focused, you can’t think about the results.
“That’s why I told the players, you have to focus on what you are doing, you must win.”
The Argentines are without goalkeeper Andras Armas, who is suspended following a controversial red card in the 0-0 draw against Uruguay, while midfielder Juan Agudelo will miss the match with a groin injury.
Armas is set to be out of action for four to six weeks.
The Argentinea squad also missed the opening leg against Peru with an injury to midfielder Carlos Valdes, who left the pitch for treatment in the tunnel after the game.
Zubitzarretas said he did not have a plan to fill Agudeles place, but added that Valdes is still a player that he can count on to get the job done.
“He will be a great player, a player who will help us,” he told reporters, adding that Agudela will also be fit.
“As long as he’s available, we’re looking forward to the game.”
Follow all the action from the first-leg with La Liga’s La Liga Champions League on Wednesday evening at 3.00pm GMT (6.00am CET) with the official live stream.