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Jun 30, 2014

Sergio Aguero recovery 'at full pace'

Argentina insist they won't underestimate their next opponents Switzerland as the two sides prepare to meet in the round of 16. Coach Sabella is likely to stick to his 4-3-3 formation while Ezequiel Lavezzi is expect to start for the injured Sergio Aguero

Sergio Aguero says his recovery from a thigh muscle problem is going well, while teammate Gonzalo Higuain has called for caution in the Argentina camp ahead of their World Cup round of 16 clash with Switzerland.

- Kelly: Romero is Argentina's underrated star
- Baier: Assessing Argentina without Aguero

Manchester City attacker Aguero -- who was troubled by injury regularly during the 2013-14 Premier League season -- limped out of Argentina's final group game, a 3-2 win against Nigeria.

The Argentine FA subsequently confirmed a thigh injury without giving details of its exact nature.

While 'Kun' looks sure to miss Tuesday's clash in Sao Paulo, a tweet sent on Sunday suggested he could be back in action should Argentina progress in the competition.

"At full pace with the recovery work," Aguero tweeted. "Thanks to everyone for your support and good wishes. And to keep lifting the national team. Vamos Argentina!!"

The player also posted a video on his Instagram page showing the running work he was doing in the gym.

Higuain has told Argentine channel Canal 7 he was well aware that Ottmar Hitzfeld's side were capable of causing an upset as other unfancied sides such as Costa Rica and Chile had already done in the tournament.

"There have been plenty of surprises at this World Cup," the Napoli striker said. "We are watching that because we know we could be out. We must improve and keep working now in this time we have.

"Afterwards, if we have the fortune to go through, we will play every three days. They are all difficult games now. You have to play with a cool head, but also with a hot heart, because you are playing in a World Cup."

Paris Saint-Germain's Ezequiel Lavezzi is expected to replace Aguero in the Albiceleste's starting lineup for the round of 16 game, with coach Alejandro Sabella sticking with the 4-3-3 formation which has been welcomed publicly by captain Lionel Messi and other players.

Lionel Messi represents a big threat to Switzerland's hopes of progressing, says Diego Benaglio.

Meanwhile, Switzerland goalkeeper Diego Benaglio said they will need an extraordinary performance from every single player to beat Argentina, and expressed concern about the threat of Lionel Messi.

Messi scored in all three of Argentina's games as they qualified from Group F with a 100 percent record.

And Switzerland will have to be on top of their game to beat one of the favourites to win the tournament outright, according to Benaglio.

He said: "It's not about which Benaglio is needed. To resist Argentina and achieve the sensation at the World Cup every an exceptional day from every single player and in every part is needed.

"It will be difficult to completely take Messi out of the match. And Argentina is not only about him. All of their attack is outstanding. You can watch all those Messi videos but they won't help you when he does the complete opposite in the decisive moments. That's what makes him so special."

Having qualified from Group E with two wins in three games Benaglio said Switzerland are not in the knockout stages just to make up the numbers.

"We've already said that qualification for the round of 16 does not have to mean elimination in the round of 16. We don't just fly to Sao Paulo to see the place," he said.

"We are thrilled to be there. It's something out of the ordinary and not given to represent Switzerland in the round of 16."

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