Argentina’s World Cup Defense in 2026 – Who From the Current Squad Will Be There to Defend Their Title?

Posted on by SoccerPunter

Argentina won the world cup in a tightly contested match against a France side that would just not be beaten. The Albiceleste relinquished a two-goal advantage, struggling to keep up with the machinations of an exceptional Kylian Mbappé.

Needless to say, an Argentina-France final was hardly on the cards, not even for bookmarkers, who largely touted Brazil to win. And for good reasons, too.

As far as the world cup betting industry was concerned, the Seleção had too much firepower in their ranks to bow out easily. The South American side had superstars across Europe’s top five leagues, including Alisson, Casemiro, Thiago Silva, Neymar, Gabriel Jesus, Vinícius Júnior, etcetera. In fact, they were comfortable leaving out Firmino from the squad, and he’s easily one of the most lethal strikers in the Premier League.

The 2026 World Cup

The 2022 World Cup hosted in Qatar is easily the most straightforward tournament of this magnitude. However, the next iteration of the event in 2026 promises huge changes across the board, especially in terms of format, venues, and participating teams.

For one, rather than a singular host, the tournament will be played across three countries in North America: the United States, Mexico, and Canada. Add to that the fact that the United States now allows sports betting to operate legally, betting numbers are poised to be even higher.

Finally, a further 16 teams will be added to the tournament, while the tournament itself will run for five weeks between June and July 2026.

The 2026 Argentina Squad

The Albiceleste is brimming with talents, both established and up-and-coming. Using showings from the just concluded World Cup, we can suggest that these stars will likely be part of the defending squad in 2026:

Julian Alvarez

Despite coming off the bench for game time in the tournament, Alvarez hit the ground running, putting in a wonderful performance that saw him contend for the Golden Boot. The striker from the blue half for Manchester is easily a talent for the future, even though it may inadvertently spell more bench time for Lautaro Martinez.

Emiliano Martínez

During the 2018 World Cup, no soccer tip could have foretold that Emiliano Martínez would feature between the sticks for Argentina on a cup-winning run. As far as careers go, the Aston Villa man is a late bloomer. Nonetheless, he continues to shine for club and country. At just 30 years of age, he would be 33 by the next World Cup and should reprise his role so long as his great form continues.

Enzo Fernandez

An emerging talent catching the limelight from the Portuguese league with Benfica, by the 2026 World Cup he’d become a well-known player and should be able to make the 2030 World Cup squad if he continues to bloom at this rate.

Lisandro Martínez

There’s a reason Lisandro Martínez has become a fan favorite at Old Trafford and placed higher in the pecking order than England star man and club captain, Harry Maguire. The former Ajax man is a no-nonsense defender who performs when he makes the squad for club and country. His performances were crucial to the Albiceleste remaining in the tournament. So long as he remains consistent and injury-free, he would doubtlessly partner Cristian Romero for another five years in the heart of the Argentine defense.

Thiago Almada During his maiden season at Atlanta United in the MLS, Thiago Almada clinched the MLS Newcomer of the Year award. His talent has caught the eye of Manchester heavyweights, City and United. He was included in the Argentine squad at the last minute as a cover for injured first-choice players. Almada may not have gotten all the time to shine on the biggest stage of world football, but he will likely be part of the defending champions’ side in 2026.

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