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2022 FIFA World Cup: Lionel Messi scores 8th World Cup goal in Argentina 2-0 win over Mexico
November 26, 2022

2022 FIFA World Cup: Argentina, Messi wake up, drop México 2-0

Posted: Saturday, November 26, 2022. 3:36 pm CST.

Photo Credit: FIFA

By Rubén Morales Iglesias: Argentina came alive as Lionel Messi unlocked the Mexican defense in a tight and competitive match that saw both teams neutralize each other until the 64th minute when Messi produced a moment of magic leading up to the final 2-0 win.

The match was the most awaited of the first round and it didn’t disappoint. Not that it was full of attacking football displaying beautiful passes and individual tricks, but it was high intensity from the get-go to the final whistle in front of 88,966 fans at the Lusail Stadium in Al Daayen.

Argentina and Mexico had neutralized each other in the first half but in the second Argentina started pushing forward until the explosive moment came in the 64th when Messi managed to unlock the Mexican defense. Left alone for a moment, Angel Di María fed Messi a long pass outside the penalty area and the Argentine talisman did what he knows best. He fired a left foot shot past defenders, strikers, and Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo ‘Memo’ Ochoa, waking up the Argentine supporters who had been rather subdued.

The icing on the cake came in the 87th minute when Enzo Fernández, who had entered the match 30 minutes earlier, unleashed a powerful long shot from the left corner of the penalty area past Ochoa after receiving from Messi.

2-0. Argentina was awake and back in the fight to qualify to the second round.

Mexico, with only one point, will now have to beat Saudi Arabia, and hope the result of the Argentina-Poland match favours their qualification aspirations. They have qualified to the second round during the last seven world cups since 1994. The only other country to do so is Brazil. Not qualifying this time around would be considered utter failure.

 

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