Argentina squeeze through to the last eight of the 2022 Qatar World Cup

Image of Lionel Messi. Credit: [email protected]

Argentina are through to the quarter-finals of the 2022 Qatar World Cup after a narrow victory over Australia.

 

Argentina and Australia contested the second of the ’round of 16′ matches in the 2022 Qatar World Cup this evening, Saturday, December 3 in the Ahmad bin Ali Stadium. At stake was a quarter-final clash with the Netherlands who earlier today beat the USA 3-1.

Manchester City forward Julian Alvarez again started up front in preference to Lautaro Martinez, such is the plethora of attacking options open to Lionel Scaloni.

Lionel Messi reached a double landmark tonight, playing in his 1,000th game of football, and his 100th time captaining his national team. In his 999 games to date, he has scored 788 goals and made 338 assists.

Socceroos coach Graham Arnold has his work cut out trying to stop this Argentine side, but, they lost against Saudi Arabia in their opening group game so anything is possible.

A dull opening to the match needed just one spark to ignite it, and who else but the magician Messi? He notched his 789th career goal in the 35th minute.

Collecting a pass from Nicolas Otamendi on the edge of the penalty area he guided the ball beyond Mat Ryan for 1-0. Incredibly, it was his first-ever goal in the knockout stages of any of the World Cups he has played in.

Julian Alvarez was gifted his side’s second after a terrible mistake by the Aussie keeper Ryan. Instead of clearing the ball, he decided to try and play his way out of danger, ending with the ball taken off him and placed easily into the bottom corner of an empty net by the Man City player. 

In the 77th minute, a shot by Craig Goodwin from more than 25 yards looked to be sailing wide of the goal until it took a deflection off Enzo Fernandez. The ball nestled itself in the bottom corner of the Argentinian net for an own goal by Fernandez.

It looked as though the scores were going to be levelled as Aziz Behich skipped past several players. He left Otamendi for dead and it was only the timely intervention of Lisandro Martinez that stopped the Dundee United player from scoring the equaliser.

Australia simply could not find that second goal and it will be Argentian who take on the Netherlands in the quarter-finals.

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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