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August 28, 2014
Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Argentina cheered by Brazilian fans during World Cup training

Argentina''s forward Lionel Messi (C) reacts as his teammate Angel Di Maria (L) kicks a ball during a training session at the Independencia Arena in Belo Horizonte on June 11, 2014 ahead of the 2014 FIFA World Cup football tournament.
Thousands of Brazilians turned out today to watch Argentina in an open training session in Belo Horizonte, cheering Lionel Messi and his team as they prepared for the start of the 2014 World Cup.

The session finished in chaotic fashion when several fans invaded the pitch to get a closer look at the Barcelona idol.

"Argentina, Argentina!", was the cry from many of the 6,500 in attendance in the city's Independencia stadium, most of them Brazilian but willing to ignore the nations' historic rivalry on the football pitch.

Messi's name was the most heard in practice, as the squad were put through their paces by coach Alejandro Sabella in a light session.

Training for little more than 30 minutes, the players delighted those present with an exhibition of football tennis. Messi appeared alongside Ángel Di Maria and Fernando Gago against Lucas Biglia, Sergio Agüero and Ezequiel Lavezzi, while Rodrigo Palacio continued training separately as he continued his recovery from an ankle sprain.

At the end of the session the group saluted the crowd, who responded with rapturous applause and cheers for the Argentines.

Among the Argentina shirts on display plenty of replicas of local powerhouses Atlético Mineiro could be spotted in the stands. 'Galo' fans have a soft spot for Sabella; it was his Estudiantes team who in 2009 downed Cruzeiro in the Copa Libertadores final, winning the affection of the club's city rivals in Belo Horizonte.

The Albiceleste kick off their campaign in Group F this Sunday, when they face off against Bosnia & Herzegovina in Rio de Janeiro's Maracaná stadium.
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Tags:  Argentina  Brazil  World Cup  Messi  





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