Argentina have booked a berth for the quarterfinals after a 2-1 victory over Australia in the World Cup. Lionel Messi and Julian Alvarez scored the goals for the two-time Champions as they prepare to face the Netherlands in the next match.
Australia were mostly passive in the match and struggled to cope with the Argentines. Their World Cup dreams in Qatar are over but it was a decent outing for the Socceroos this time around.
As it Happened:
Argentina gave a start to young striker Julian Alvarez after his decent outing against Poland. Argentina dominated the ball in the initial minutes but couldn't engineer any clear chances. Australia kept their shape intact and repelled the waves of attacks from the Latin American side. But Argentina took the lead ten minutes before half time. Lionel Messi opened the scoring on his 1000th career game. Nicolas Otamendi's teed pass was finished expertly by the magician Messi as Los Albicelestes got their noses in front. At the break, it was Argentina who had the slender lead and a foot into the quarterfinals.
After the break, Julian Alvarez doubled the lead in the 57th minute for Argentina. It was consecutive goals for the Manchester City youngster in the World Cup. The Socceroos huffed and puffed but couldn't put Emiliano Martinez under any sort of pressure. But Australia were handed a lifeline 13 minutes from time when Enzo Fernandez scored an own goal. It gave them a glimmer of hope, but the Socceroos failed to capitalize and ended up losing 2-1.
Argentina will face the Netherlands next Friday at the Lusail Iconic Stadium. The Socceroos are out of the tournament after the defeat.
Argentina vs Australia Lineup:
Argentina: Martinez; Molina (Montiel), Romero, Otamendi, Acuna (Tagliafico); De Paul, Fernandez, Mac Allister (Palacios); Messi, Alvarez (Lautaro), Gomez (Lisandro)
Australia: Ryan; Degenek (Karacic), Souttar, Rowles, Behich; Leckie (Kuol), Baccus (Hrustic), Mooy, McGree (Goodwin); Irvine, Duke (Maclaren)