World Cup: Sergio Aguero says underdog status suits Argentina v Germany in final
By Fred Nathan
Last Updated: 11/07/14 11:33am
Sergio Aguero thinks Argentina's underdog status will play into their hands when they face Germany in this Sunday's World Cup final in Rio de Janeiro.
While Joachim Low's side smashed hosts Brazil 7-1 in their semi-final, Argentina only managed to squeeze past the Netherlands on penalties in Sao Paulo on Wednesday, prompting the Germans to be installed as heavy favourites to win the World Cup for a fourth time.
"Germany were always the favourites, along with Brazil, to win the World Cup," the Manchester City man said.
"They continue to be so now. We need to play our own game and it suits us that all the pressure is on them."
Argentina's road to their first final for 24 years has come off the back of solid defensive displays while their fearsome attack, including four-time World Player of the Year Lionel Messi, has been criticised in some quarters for not hitting top form.
Manchester City striker Aguero is fully aware they may have to withstand plenty of pressure from the Germans once more at the Maracana on Sunday night.
"We are in the final and we have to play it and win it in whatever way possible," he said.
"We want to have control of the ball, but we know that Germany is a great team that know each other off by heart having played together for many years.
"It is clear that Argentina always go out to win, but sometimes during the game you have to be cautious. We are all aware of what the objective is and we will leave everything on the field to achieve it."
Aguero made his return to action for the final 40 minutes against the Dutch after missing the previous two matches through injury.
Yet the 26-year-old struggled to get into the game and admits it is difficult to recover full fitness in the middle of such an intense tournament.
Germany is a very strong, aggressive opponent, but if we are at our best we can beat anyone. What I am interested in is leaving as a champion. It is the dream all Argentines have.
"When you come back from an injury, it is always in the back of your mind whether it will return," he added.
"I had to train and try to be as good as I could be. When you miss three games, especially in a World Cup, you realise what you are missing."
Former Liverpool winger Maxi Rodriguez insisted Argentina were capable of beating anyone on their day.
"Germany is a very strong, aggressive opponent, but if we are at our best we can beat anyone," he said.
"What I am interested in is leaving as a champion. It is the dream all Argentines have."
Meanwhile, Angel di Maria returned to light training on Thursday and Argentina are hoping that he will return to the fold for the final. The Real Madrid midfielder missed the semi-final due to a thigh injury.
"Di Maria trained at between 60 and 80 per cent on the pitch," said Argentina team spokesman Andres Ventura.
"His progress is obvious. He will be observed over the next few days to see if he will be fit."