Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni remains upbeat and is confident his side can beat Venezuela to reach the Copa America semi-finals.
The sides will lock horns in Rio de Janeiro on Friday night, with Argentina priced at 1.57 to win the match and Rafael Dudamel’s side on offer at 6.50. La Albiceleste moved into the quarter-finals by finishing second in Group B after failing to shine in their three games.
A 2-0 defeat to table-toppers Colombia was followed by a 1-1 draw against Paraguay and it took a 2-0 triumph over minnows Qatar to see them through thanks to goals from Lautaro Martinez and Sergio Aguero. And Scaloni feels that victory over the UAE side can act as a springboard to make the last four.
“We think we’re good because we came from a win that gave us a significant emotional boost,” he told reporters. “It’s going to be a difficult game, but we are confident.”
The signs are positive that the men in light blue and white might be able to get the better of their next opponents as they have never lost to Venezuela at the Copa America, scoring 28 goals in five matches and conceding just three. However, La Vinotinto secured a 0-0 draw with Brazil en route to finishing as runners-up in Group A and Scaloni is taking nothing for granted.
“Football has evolved,” he added. “Nowadays, every team has difficulty.” Argentina are 7.00 to win the tournament, with hosts Brazil the 1.91 favourites despite struggling at times themselves.