This is not going to be a tournament where one player puts his team on his back and carries them to the crown.
Portugal bowed out of Russian Federation 2018 on Saturday, with Uruguay prevailing 2-1 in the last-16 encounter courtesy of a brilliant brace from Edinson Cavani. His failure to get the best out of Lionel Messi, whose playing position never emerged from a fug confusion, has also seen Sampaoli face the wrath of fans and the media back home.
He also scored the fastest goal at the tournament so far, struck its first hat-trick, and, just for good measure, has now scored more goals in national team football than any other player. He made 20 appearances at full worldwide level for Argentina and scored six goals - including a late, decisive equaliser against Peru which earned the team their place at the 1986 World Cup finals.
Argentina's struggles during the World Cup qualifiers highlighted the squad's lack of balance.
Aside from the goal against Nigeria, the five-time FIFA Player of the Year had a poor World Cup by his standards.
Earlier, Portugal coach Fernando Santos said he hoped Ronaldo would remain part of the global set-up.
Sampaoli's team drew the first three qualifiers of his rein but Messi scored a hat-trick in a 3-1 win at Ecuador in the final match to send Argentina to Russian Federation.
As well as losing the World Cup final four years ago, Messi has tasted defeat in the final of the Copa America on three occasions.
He himself said it would not be right to speak about quitting after Portugal's exit: 'It's not the right time to talk about my future, or about the coach or any of the players. Santos will always make space for him.
Olajire said: "Instead of returning to Nigeria, the Super Eagles players have been returning to their respective bases one after the other".
Argentina have not won a major global title since lifting the Copa America in 1993.
Messi's situation is completely the opposite.
The Argentine is only 48 years old but is wanted by so many big teams across Europe as he has helped Atletico become one of the better teams in the La Liga despite not having the same money as Barcelona and Real Madrid. He is a system coach and he didn't have the players to apply that to the full in Russian Federation.
For now, Messi and Ronaldo will see the rest of the world's greatest footballing spectacle unfold from the sidelines, possibly regretting that move or that sprint, that pass or that missed chance.
Messi's return in Russian Federation was more meagre.
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