Uruguay beat Argentina 2-0 in World Cup qualifier, their biggest win
Argentina’s Lionel Messi failed to maintain his unbeaten World Cup title run as Uruguay beat Argentina 2-0 on Thursday in a World Cup qualifier, their biggest win under new coach Marcelo Bielsa.
Argentina suffered their first defeat at Buenos Aires’ La Bombonera Stadium in a competitive match since opening the group stage against Saudi Arabia at the Qatar World Cup.
Still, Argentina lead the South American qualifying group with 12 points from five games, trailing Uruguay on 10, Colombia on nine and Venezuela on eight.
Brazil will host the World Cup champions at Rio de Janeiro’s Maracana Stadium in fifth place, with seven points, Sportstar mentionted.
Uruguay were aggressive from the start against the World Cup champions. Darwin Nunez almost opened the scoring with a 10th-minute cross after a mistake by defender Nicolas Otamendi.
Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni appeared fuming during the match as his midfielders struggled to block Uruguay’s wingers.
In the 42nd minute, Matias Viña stole the ball from Nahuel Molina and sent a low cross into the penalty area, which Ronald Araujo scored.
Near the end of the first half, Messi’s free-kick and Otamendi’s close-range strike gave Argentina a chance to equalise, forcing Uruguay goalkeeper Sergio Roset into a crucial save.
Uruguay kept up the pressure on Argentina even after the break, forcing the team to once again depend on Messi and substitute Angel Di Maria to create their best chances.
Unfortunately, in the 57th minute, Messi attempted a foul but missed.
In the 87th minute, Nunez scored on a counterattack after Messi was stopped by the Uruguayan defense on the edge of the box.
“We never felt comfortable in this match,” Messi said. “Uruguay is a physical team, they have good teamwork. It’s always like that against them.”
Luis Suarez, Messi’s close friend, did not play for Uruguay in the World Cup qualifying round.
Uruguay beat Brazil by the same score in Montevideo and will play Bolivia next.
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