Fernandez: Argentine attack stronger than defence

National squad's replacement defender has admitted that there is an imbalance between the quality of their strike-force compared to their defensive options
Argentina centre-back Federico Fernandez has conceded that there is a gap in ability between the team's forward line, which includes Lionel Messi, and their injury-hit defence.

The Napoli defender was called into action for la Albiceleste's match against Columbia after Martin Demichelis was dropped from the starting line-up.

"The offensive potential is clear to see. It is clear that the defenders aren't better than the strikers," the 23-year-old admitted, speaking to Canchallena.

"What has happened is the defence has suffered more changes and now we're in another stage, in a good way.

"The defence have to help and give comfort to the forwards, so they can win games."

Fernandez has had to form a partnership with Ezequiel Garay, something which he says is still very much a work in progress, but he is unconcerned by the potential imbalance of Argentina's squad.

"Well, we've not played many games together, so it's important to keep adding minutes to gain in strength and confidence. The only way of understanding each other is sharing the defence," he explained.

"[The squad] looks good. In one play or one minute, it is possible to open [up] a game that, on paper, is difficult."