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Maradona criticizes Argentina after Copa America loss

June 17, 2019
Argentina's Lionel Messi, left, and Argentina's Nicolas Tagliafico walk out of the pitch at the end of the Copa America Group B soccer match against Colombia at the Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador, Brazil, Saturday, June 15, 2019. Colombia won 2-0. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)
Argentina's Lionel Messi, left, and Argentina's Nicolas Tagliafico walk out of the pitch at the end of the Copa America Group B soccer match against Colombia at the Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador, Brazil, Saturday, June 15, 2019. Colombia won 2-0. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

BELO HORIZONTE, Brazil (AP) — Diego Maradona has criticized Argentina after its opening loss to Colombia in the Copa America.

Maradona tells the TyC Sports channel in Buenos Aires “even Tonga can beat us.”

Argentina lost 2-0 on Saturday, the team’s first defeat in a Copa America opener since 1979.

Maradona, the captain of the Argentina squad that won the 1986 World Cup and coach from 2008-10, criticized the country’s soccer federation for putting inexperienced Lionel Scaloni in charge of the national team. He also took shots at the players, saying they need to “feel” the importance of the Argentina jersey.

Argentina is trying to end a 26-year title drought. The team is last in Group B after this weekend’s opening matches, one point behind Paraguay and Qatar and three points behind Colombia.

Argentina’s next match is against Paraguay on Wednesday in Belo Horizonte.

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