It will not be today (30) that Lionel Messi will say goodbye to the World Cup. Argentina dominated Poland at Stadium 974, won 2-0 and advanced to the Round of 16 in Qatar.
The number 10, who suffered and missed a penalty, still in the first half, was ‘saved’ by a convincing collective performance, unlike what was seen against Saudi Arabia and Mexico. Mac Allister and Julián Álvarez scored the Argentine goals.
With the triumph, Argentina reaches six points and advances to the knockout stage in first place in Group C. Now, the albiceleste team will face Australia in the qualifiers. The game takes place next Saturday (3), at 16h.
Poland, even with the defeat, also advances. The Europeans were left with four points and still waited on the field to celebrate. At Lusail, Mexico beat Saudi Arabia, equaling the score, but behind in the balance (0 to -1 for the Poles). Thus, in the 974, Lewandowski’s team embraced and celebrated the classification.
Álvarez speeds up and scores a goal
Chosen for the center forward spot this Wednesday, Julián Álvarez performed well against Poland and will likely win Lautaro Martínez’s spot in the knockout round. The number 9 gave more speed and, to boot, scored the great goal that gave the Brothers peace of mind.
Who was bad: Lewandowski
The Polish star received no help, with a team practically nailed to the defense field. But, for someone who has already been voted the best in the world, a greater contribution was expected, even more so in a decisive match. The Barcelona striker, however, basically “watched” the Argentine midfielder play.
What’s up, Messi?
The Argentine star promised a lighter Argentina after the victory against Mexico and that’s what happened today. With absolute dominance of the South American team, Messi was the highlight of the first half, for better or for worse.
Showed up for the game, created, dribbled, kicked on goal. He conceded a penalty, but made a mistake when taking the 10: he stopped at goalkeeper Szczesny, who hit the corner and made a good save.
‘Root’ fans applaud star player after missed penalty
The stands of Estadio 974 had a higher amount of “roots” Argentines compared to “international fans”. In the two other games, against the Saudis and the Mexicans, the South Americans were swallowed up, but not today. Fans cheered as the names of Enzo Fernández and Julián Álvarez appeared in the lineup and chanted Messi’s name after the missed penalty.
Part of the stadium does not see Mac Allister’s goal
Argentina came back from the break the same way the first half ended: putting pressure on Poland. Thus opened the scoring in the first minute. Molina crossed, Mac Allister hit masked and beat the opposing goalkeeper. The goal, lightning, ended up not being seen by a lot of fans who were shopping at halftime. They appeared running in the two large entrances to the stands, which are behind the goals.
974 containers rock
Stadium 974, which was built using steel modules and exact 974 containers, swung after Mac Allister’s goal. The structure swung for real with the 1 to 0 on the scoreboard.
Messi passes Maradona in number of appearances
Messi completed 22 World Cup appearances on Wednesday and surpassed Maradona as the Argentine player with the most World Cup appearances. The German Lothar Matthäus is the record holder, with 25 participations between 1982 and 1998.
Argentina changes (again) and dominates
Scaloni was not happy with the defeat in the debut and piled up changes in the team against Mexico, mainly in the defensive sector. Argentina did not play well, but managed to win to reach the third round alive. The coach then moved the team again. With Enzo Fernández and Julián Álvarez starting, the South Americans pushed the Poles and finally convinced in the Qatar Cup. The number 9 shirt, by the way, scored a great goal.
Where is Poland?
The Poles weren’t favorites, it’s true, but they were delivered for almost the entire game. Not even Lewandowski’s credentials were enough for the Argentine defense to work. Cornered in the defense field, the European team was on the wheel for the South Americans.
POLAND 0 X 2 ARGENTINA
World Cup Group C 3rd round
Date and time: November 30, 2022 (Wednesday), at 4 pm (Brasília time)
Place: Stadium 974 in Doha (Qatar)
Referee: Danny Desmond Makkelie
Assistants: Hessel Steegstra and Jan de Vries
Yellow cards: Krychowiak (Poland); Acuña (Argentina)
Public: 44,089 people
Goals: Mac Allister, at 1′ 2ºT, and Julián Álvarez, at 23′ 2ºT
POLAND: Szczesny; Bereszynski (Jedrzejczyk), Glik, Kiwior, Cash; Krychowiak (Piatek), Bielik (Damian Szymanski), Zielinski, Frankowski (Kaminski); Swiderski (Skoras) and Lewandowski. Technician: Czeslaw Michniewicz.
ARGENTINA: Emiliano Martinez; Molina, Cristian Romero, Otamendi, Acuña (Tagliafico); Mac Allister (Almada), Enzo Fernández (Pezzella), De Paul; Messi, Di María (Paredes) and Julián Álvarez (Lautaro Martínez). Technician: Lionel Scaloni.