All in all, there were about a dozen offers for the officials of the Argentine National Football Federation to consider. They mostly came from the gaming’s commercially lucrative emerging markets: the United States, China, Australia, Indonesia, and the United Arab Emirates. The only outlier was actually an unlikely bid from Bangladesh.
Each suitor wanted the same thing – a chance to host Lionel Messi and Argentina in one of the two windows designated for friendly matches this summer – but all had different motives. Some players were inspired by the sport’s prestige to play on the same field as World Cup champions. For others, potential gains strayed into politics.
But they were all ready to pay for the privilege. He promised not only the department, but also an eye-opening performance fee.
Five months after winning the World Cup in Qatar, Argentina have become the most sought-after and perhaps the most expensive opponents in international football. His one-match progress against the world champion has gotten so high that $5 million is now just the starting point, according to people familiar with the discussion.
The identities of the winning bidders for the two June games are not yet official. The AFA continues to evaluate options and will only make a firm decision once national team coach Lionel Scaroni has indicated that he is happy with their plans.
However, sources within a number of the national associations involved say the most likely schedule is for Argentina to play their first game in China, wait for Scaroni’s approval and face Australia, then play the host team. suggests that it is to travel to Indonesia for the match. Currently ranked 149th in the world.
These matchups demonstrate that the benefits of meeting the reigning world champion extend far beyond sport. are encouraged to agree to host the match in China in hopes of strengthening political and economic ties between the two countries. A match in Indonesia can be viewed as a realistic reward as well. Last month, Argentina stepped in as host for her U-20 World Championship this year. Indonesia after being stripped from the tournament over protests over Israel’s involvement.
However, that schedule means it will take over playing encounters in the United States, albeit only for the time being. In recent years, AFA has embarked on a plan to expand both commercial revenue and reach as part of a strategic attempt to capitalize on its global appeal.
Recent success has influenced it. Argentina, Messi’s first major international honor since 1995 after lifting his trophy at the Copa America in 2021 and Messi’s home country, has more sponsors and sponsorships than any other national team on the planet. We were able to get a partner.
After Qatar it expanded again. AFA has signed his four partners, mostly in India and Bangladesh, in the months since the World Cup. The country’s domestic league also had a downstream impact, with more sponsors this season than at any point in its history.
That said, Argentina’s “priority for the next four years” is the United States, said Leandro Petersen, AFA’s chief commercial and marketing officer. To deepen that connection, the federation plans to: Build a $10 million training facility North Bay Village, Florida is a small outcrop between Miami and Miami Beach that serves as a meeting place for national teams during the international break.
The complex may be just the first of many in the United States. The AFA is also considering establishing a physical presence in several other cities as part of what Petersen called a “landing strategy.”
The Argentina national team will play on American soil in both 2024 and 2026. First to defend his Copa America crown and later to defend his World Cup championship. However, the AFA wants to make the team visit an annual event. As part of their World Cup preparations, they are likely to arrange at least one match in North America in 2025, and even against Mexico.
Perhaps no country will turn down the chance. After all, Argentina is now the biggest show in town. Thanks to a nerve-shattering and emotional journey in Qatar, not just a world champion, but the most engaging team on the planet. does not seem to exist.
Tarik Panja contributed to the report.