Home Sport Lionel Messi Scores First-Ever World Cup Knockout Goal As Argentina Beat Australia...

Lionel Messi Scores First-Ever World Cup Knockout Goal As Argentina Beat Australia 2-1 To Enter Quarter-finals | football news

Lionel Messi produced a moment of trademark quality to score the opener in a 2-1 win over Australia and send Argentina into the quarter-finals of the World Cup on Saturday. Messi’s 789th goal in his 1,000th career appearance — but first in the knockout rounds of the World Cup — helped set up a last-eight clash with the unbeaten Netherlands on Friday. Julian Alvarez scored the other in the 57th minute after some calamitous Australian defending, before Enzo Fernandez’s 77th-minute own goal set up an unexpectedly nervy finale. Now 35, one of the best players of all time is seeking to win the tournament for the first time in what will surely be his final World Cup.

Messi’s classy first-half goal, bending the ball into the bottom corner, broke the resistance and ultimately the hearts of a gutsy Australian side who defied all expectations in Qatar and went down fighting.

Australia’s yellow-shirted fans were vastly outnumbered among the packed crowd at the 45,000-capacity Ahmad bin Ali Stadium and were drowned out by Argentina’s boisterous, bellowing and bouncing supporters.

Back in Australia, where fans had a sunrise start if they wanted to catch the game live on television, the Sydney Opera House was lit up in green and gold.

Their side were huge underdogs — few at home had expected them to get even this far at the tournament — but this has been a World Cup of shocks.

Two-time champions Argentina were the victim of arguably the biggest shock in Qatar when they went down 2-1 to Saudi Arabia in their opening match.

But there would be no repeat here.

Graham Arnold’s Socceroos set out to unsettle their opponents. Keanu Baccus left one on Messi and Jackson Irvine was booked for crunching into left-back Marcos Acuna.

Argentina had Australia pinned back but the Socceroos were resolute and growing in confidence as an uninspiring first half wore on.

Messi was getting frustrated, tussling with Australian defender Aziz Behich on the sidelines.

Argentina and their coach Lionel Scaloni badly needed something special and in Messi they got it 10 minutes from the break.

Alexis MacAllister fed defender Nicolas Otamendi, who was still in the box for an Argentina free-kick, and he miscontrolled it into the path of Messi who bent the ball left-footed along the ground into the corner.

It was Argentina’s first shot on target.

– Ryan blunders –

Australia had only got this far once before, in 2006, and they needed to come out and attack in the second half.

Instead, they self-destructed. Goalkeeper and captain Mathew Ryan tried to play out under fierce pressure in his box from hard-running Rodrigo De Paul just before the hour and was dispossessed by Alvarez.

The Manchester City striker, 22, nipped in, stole the ball from Ryan and swiveled to slot into an empty net for his second goal in as many games. Arnold thumped his dugout in frustration.

The Socceroos looked dead and buried but substitute Goodwin latched onto a loose clearance and his shot hit Fernandez and ricocheted in with 13 minutes left.

Behich then went on a superb mazy run from left-back, beating three Argentina players before Lisandro Martinez made a vital last-ditch challenge.

Teenager Garang Kuol then forced Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez into a desperate save deep in injury time before the massed ranks of South American fans celebrated a big win.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Featured Video Of The Day

FIFA World Cup: Another Upset In FIFA World Cup As Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal Lose To South Korea

Topics mentioned in this article

RELATED ARTICLES

“Will Inject Pace…”: Ramiz Raja Feels This India White-Ball Specialist Should Be Unleashed vs Australia | cricket news

India take on Australia in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy© BCCIFormer Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ramiz Raja feels Team India should unleash white-ball specialist Suryakumar...

Nothing hurts more than if you lose your new phone-Virat Kohli. News & Features Network

An accident has happened with Virat Kohli. He has informed by tweeting some time ago that his new mobile phone has been lost....

India vs Australia, 1st Test: Three Key Player Battles To Watch Out For | cricket news

India host Australia in a hotly anticipated four-match Test series starting on Thursday in Nagpur. The hosts have won each of the last...

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular

Turkey’s leader admits “shortcomings” as earthquake kills more than 12,000

<!-- -->In 1999, a magnitude 7.4 earthquake killed over 17,000 people.Conclude: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan acknowledged "shortcomings" on Wednesday following criticism of his...

Amrita Singh was cheated by Sunny Deol, she separated from Vinod Khanna because of her mother

Amrita Singh is not dependent on any introduction. He created panic in the industry with his strong acting between the 80s and 90s....

“Will Inject Pace…”: Ramiz Raja Feels This India White-Ball Specialist Should Be Unleashed vs Australia | cricket news

India take on Australia in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy© BCCIFormer Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ramiz Raja feels Team India should unleash white-ball specialist Suryakumar...

Sargun Mehta revealed what the mother said about Priyanka Chaudhary winning Bigg Boss: ‘She has won and…’

Actor Sargun Mehta took to Instagram, and shared a series of pictures with husband-actor Ravi Dubey and actors - Priyanka Chaudhary and Ankit Gupta....

Recent Comments