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Ecuador vs Argentina


Argentina coach Jorge Sampaoli is “very confident” his side can get the result they need against Ecuador to avoid missing out on a place at a World Cup for the first time since 1970.

The two-time world champions are sixth in the 10-team South American qualifying group.

They need a win to have a chance of securing one of the four automatic qualification spots for next summer’s tournament in Russia.

“It depends on us,” said Sampaoli.

“I’m very confident that if we play with the conviction that we did [against Peru] then we are going to be in the World Cup.”

Argentina drew with Peru on Friday to leave them a point off the top four.

Ecuador have lost their past five qualifiers and are already eliminated – but Argentina have not beaten them in Quito since 2001.

A draw might be enough for Sampaoli’s side to finish fifth and enter a play-off against New Zealand, providing Peru lose at home to fourth-placed Colombia.

“The team is angry but thinking that if they win in Ecuador, they will qualify,” added Sampaoli. “There is a conviction that strikes me very much.

“We will continue searching, as we did with Venezuela and Peru.”

Argentina will be without injured midfielder Fernando Gago for the game.
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