Argentina's new national coach Alejandro Sabella says he is feeling the weight of expectation to improve the team's performances, starting with this week's friendly against Venezuela in Kolkata.

Sabella was quoted as saying in Indian media on Tuesday that there were ''huge expectations'' for Friday's game and it was ''a big responsibility'' to take over as coach of the two-time World Cup winners.

Sabella took over from Sergio Batista after Argentina failed to make the most of hosting last month's Copa America, crashing out in the quarterfinals against eventual champion Uruguay.

The game at the 100,000-capacity Salt Lake Stadium will mark Barcelona star Lionel Messi's first game as Argentina's captain.