Best Argentinian Players in 2021

Tue 12 October 2021 | 8:30

Argentina have produced some incredible footballers throughout history. But, they haven't recently been able to garner much success. In fact, their achievements or trophy haul do no justice to the immense potential they possess. Read on to find out more about the best Argentinian players in 2021.

This year, 2021, is going to be carved in the stone for Argentinian people, for it was the year

Lionel Messi

won his first major trophy, Copa America, with his national team. Upon winning the title in 2021, Argentina stood beside Uruguay as the national teams who have won the most number of Copa America titles with 15 times.

The 2021 championship was the nation's first achievement since they last won a major tournament – the 1993 Copa America. From 1993 up until 2021, La Albiceleste had reached 4 Copa America finals and 1 FIFA World Cup final in 2014, but they lost them all.

Among Argentinian players, their captain Lionel Messi has always been under very high pressure from the fans due to the absence of international trophies in his career achievements, and winning the title in 2021 was perhaps one of the most important and majestic moments in his professional career as he burst out crying when the referee blew the final whistle of their match against Brazil in the tournament's final match.

It seemed like the entire squad wanted the trophy to be Messi's, to be lifted by his hands, and to give him this for all he has done for them. Thus, there are a number of players who we can call the best players for Argentina at Copa America.

In addition to that, some Argentinian players – beside the legendary Leo Messi who is probably going to win his 7th Ballon d'Or at the end of the year- have had one of the best years of their careers in 2021.

Best Argentinian Players in 2021:

In the following article, we are going to talk about the

best Argentinian players in 2021

, in addition to providing a brief overview of their performances and well as their stats and numbers in 2020/21 season.

Keep reading to find out more about the Argentina's most shining players that have made this year, a year to remember for their nation.

Lionel Messi

  • Full name: Lionel Andrés Messi

  • Date of birth: 24 June 1987 (age 34)

  • Place of birth: Rosario, Santa Fe, Argentina

  • Height: 1.69 m (5 ft 7 in)

  • Position(s): Forward

The same as every single year since Messi came into prominence he was the best Argentinian player of the year 2021. Messi broke several records within 2021: he became top South American goal scorer on international level by breaking Pele's record.

Messi has scored 79 goals for his national team until now. On 9th of September, in a 3 – 0 victory against Bolivia in a 2022 World Cup Qualifier, Messi scored a hat-trick and took his tally to 79 goals in 153 appearances.

Moreover, Leo Messi became the player with the most number of matches played for Albiceleste, breaking Javier Mascherano's record – who had appeared in 147 matches. Now let's talk about Lionel Messi's first international trophy after losing 4 major tournament's finals: 2021 Copa America.

He finally took his country to the summit of South American football after losing 2 successive Copa America matches in 2015 and 2016, both against Chile, and he did it in the most glorious way possible: Messi was directly involved in 9 out of the 12 goals scored by Argentina throughout the tournament, scoring four goals and assisting five.

He was the tournament's top goal scorer - alongside the Colombian Luis Dias, although the Golden Boot was awarded to Messi as he had more assists. In fact, he was also Copa America 2021 top assist provider. Moreover, Messi was named the tournament's best player alongside Neymar.

In addition, Lionel Messi has been directly involved in 50 goals within 42 matches in 2021 calendar year with 36 goals and 14 assists. (Correct until 19th of September).

He also helped his former club Barcelona to the conquest of the 2020/21 Copa del Rey before making his move to

Paris Saint-Germain

this summer. He featured in a total of 47 games for Blaugrana in 2020/21, scored 38 goals and assisted 14.

Messi played 778 games at Barcelona, breaking

Xavi Hernandez

's appearance record in the 2020-21 season. In addition, he scored 672 goals, another club record, and helped Barca win, among other trophies, 10 La Liga titles and the Champions League on four occasions.

Messi left Barcelona after 21 years in the summer of 2021, which if being added to the fact that he achieved his first international trophy this summer, makes 2021 summer the most notable and decisive summer in the

Argentina star player

career. Additionally, he holds the highest chances of winning the 2021 Ballon d'Or.

He joined PSG over the summer on a shock free-agent move after two decades with Barcelona. Messi had been with Barcelona since 2001, joining the academy the year before.

Messi has long been one of the best players in the world but, despite incredible success on the club level and on a personal level, international trophies have eluded him with Argentina.

After years of critiques saying that Argentina rely on Messi too much, he announced that he doesn't believe that Argentina have ever been overly dependent on his contributions as he said the team is currently on the right track.

"At no time did the national team depend on me. We always try to have a strong group. We always said that if we are not a strong team, winning and achieving our objectives would be difficult.

"I think we became strong as a group. Most of the players have been working together for a long time. We have already have played in a Copa America, so we have the experience that having played it gives you. We are still in training and I think we are on the right track."

He added, "It's special, everything that I play with the national team is always special, be it friendlies, qualifiers, Copas America, World Cup ... I never imagined playing so many games. I didn't even think about it. I just lived from day to day and tried to always be present and always give my best."

Lionel Messi became the first South American to score 80 international goals as his Argentina side beat Uruguay in World Cup qualifying.

Lautaro Martinez

  • Full name: Lautaro Javier Martínez

  • Date of birth: 22 August 1997 (age 24)

  • Place of birth: Bahía Blanca, Argentina

  • Height: 1.74 m (5 ft 9 in)

  • Position(s): Striker

Many believe that it is upsetting as a football fan to think that some of the best players to ever play the game are in the twilight of their careers.

Three of the greatest Argentinian strikers ever in Lionel Messi, Sergio Agüero and Gonzalo Higuaín are all entering their early 30s. However, It is quite promising that

Lautaro Martínez

has entered the scene and is known to be the future of Argentinian football.

Lautaro Martinez has little cause for concern at present as he is enjoying a memorable moment in a blossoming career. The 24 – year – old striker was indubitably one of the

best Argentinian players in 2021

. In addition to winning the Copa America, Lautaro Martinez helped his club, Inter, secure the 2020/21 Serie A title after 11 years.

He was a key player in ending Juventus's tally of 9 consecutive Italian League titles: Lautaro featured in all of Inter's 38 league games in 2020/21, scored 17 goals and provided 6 assists.

Moreover, Martinez scored 3 goals for Argentina throughout 2021 Copa America, and played an important role in his country achieving a major trophy after 28 years.

Argentina national team head coach, Lionel Scaloni defended his striker, Lautaro Martinez who came in for major criticism from fans and pundits during their 1-1 draw in Copa America opener against Chile. He insisted that he does not plan on changing his striker and that Martinez will continue to remain as his No.9.

Martinez was linked with a move to


, though such a move looks unlikely considering that the Catalan giants have already signed Aguero and cannot afford the striker at the moment. He is now expected to sign a new deal and the club officials described him as 'the future of Inter.'

Emiliano Martinez

  • Full name: Damián Emiliano Martínez Romero

  • Date of birth: 2 September 1992 (age 29)

  • Place of birth: Mar del Plata, Argentina

  • Height: 1.95 m (6 ft 5 in)

  • Position(s): Goalkeeper

The tall goal keeper was unquestionably one of the main reasons Argentina won the 2021 Copa America and one of the

best Argentinian players in 2021

. It was


 first experience of playing in a competition for his national team.

The pinnacle of his performance happened in the semi-final match of the tournament, where he saved 3 spot kicks and took his team to the final match after a 3 – 2 win after the penalty shootouts.

He also kept a clean sheet in the final match against Brazil in Albiceleste's 1 – 0 victory on Brazilian soil. Moreover, he was awarded the Golden Glove award as the best goal keeper of Copa America 2021: Within a total of 6 matches throughout the tournament, Martinez kept 4 clean sheets and recorded 12 saves.

Furthermore, he saved

Arturo Vidal

's penalty in their opening group stage match – however, he couldn't prevent Eduardo Vargas's shot on the rebound. Undoubtedly, he played the most vital role – after Lionel Messi - in Argentina's winning the trophy.

In addition, he also had an astonishing season on individual level with his club, Aston Villa: Emiliano Martinez featured in every 38 Premier League games for his team in 2020/21 season, in which he kept 15 clean sheets, meaning he stood 3rd in the list of the keepers with the most clean sheets behind

Ederson Moraes

(19) and Edaurdo Mendy (16).

Additionally, he averaged 3.7 saves per match (142 in total) which placed him 4th in the ranking of the goal keepers with the most saves per match ratio.

With Emiliano Martinez, it seems like that Albiceleste has found a keeper on whom they can rely after so many years. Now with the tall goal keeper and a number of other players – who are also included in this list of best Argentinian players of 2021 – their fans have gotten their hopes very high for 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Lionel Messi has always praised Martinez, branding him ‘one of the best goalkeepers in the world’.

Martinez was a heroic figure for Argentina in their run to Copa America glory in the summer, saving three penalties in the penalty shootout win over Colombia in the semi-finals.

‘Dibu [Emiliano] Martinez is fundamental. When they come to him, he always responds. He established himself in goal and we have one of the best goalkeepers in the world,’ said Messi.

Rodrigo De Paul

  • Full name: Rodrigo Javier De Paul

  • Date of birth: 24 May 1994 (age 27)

  • Place of birth: Sarandí, Argentina

  • Height: 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)

  • Position(s): Midfielder

The 27 – year – old midfielder has spent one of the best years of his career so far in 2021, the year in which he won the Copa America with Argentina national team and was also one of the

best players for Argentina at Copa America 2021

, alongside making a move from Udinese to Atletico Madrid for a transfer fee of €35.00m.

De Paul

featured in all of Argentina's 6 games in the tournament, scored 1 goal and assisted one further. In addition to getting involved in goals, he was one of the best players of the squad in terms of distance covered, ball retrievals and creating chances.

A perfect example for a box – to – box midfielder, De Paul was perhaps the best Udinese player in 2020/21 Serie A season; he played in 36 league games, scored 9 goals and provided 9 assists, meaning he was directly involved in 42% of the club's total goals throughout the league (18 out of 42) – indeed an astonishing record for a central midfielder.

Furthermore, having accomplished 3.4 successful dribbles per match, he was the second – best dribbler of 2020/21 Serie A. Moreover, De Paul sent an average of 2.3 key passes per match, placing him 3rd in the list of players with the best key passes per match ratio. He also created a total of 20 big chances and no other player managed to do better.

His performances have given hopes to the Argentina fans for the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Qatar in 2022.

Cristian Romero

  • Full name: Cristian Gabriel Romero

  • Date of birth: 27 April 1998 (age 23)

  • Place of birth: Córdoba, Argentina

  • Height: 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)

  • Position(s): Centre-back

This year, 2021, was undoubtedly the break – through year for the 23 – year – old center back: he helped his national team to the conquest of the Copa America, was named the 2020/21 Serie A Best Defender of the Year, and made a loan - move to

Tottenham Hotspurs

which contains an option for the English side to purchase him for €55.00m at the end of the 2021/22 season.

Romero went to Copa America with his country and established himself as a starter with strong performances against Uruguay and Paraguay in the group stage. Injury then struck, but he returned for the final when they beat Brazil to win the famous trophy.

Romero wore Atalanta's shirt during 2020/21 season, and his stunning performances throughout the season earned him the award of Best Serie A defender of 2020/21. In addition, Romero featured in 3 Copa America games including the final match and the 1 – 0 win against Albiceleste's eternal rival, Brazil.

With him being in the squad, alongside the presence of Emiliano Martinez behind him as the keeper – Atgentina fans can have a peace of mind about their back line the way they have about their attack line which contains world – class stars such as Lionel Messi, Lautaro Martinez, and

Anjel Di Maria


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