Lionel Messi scored and led Argentina to victory, which beat Uruguay 3-0 this Sunday in a match on the fifth day of the South American Qualifiers of the Qatar World Cup played at the Monumental Stadium in Buenos Aires.
Messi reached 80 goals with the Albiceleste and added his sixth goal in these qualifying rounds, equaling the Brazilian Neymar and placing himself two goals behind the tournament’s top scorer, the Bolivian Marcelo Martins Moreno.
‘La Pulga’ is also the top scorer of the South American qualifiers with 27 goals, escorted by Uruguayan Luis Suárez, with 25 and Bolivian Martins Moreno with 20
La Albiceleste, with 22 points, continues as guard for the leader Brazil who has 28.
With the scorers Messi, Rodrigo De Paul and Lautaro Martínez, added to an extraordinary night of the goalkeeper Emiliano ‘Dibujos’ Martínez, the Albiceleste stretched their undefeated series to 24 and reaped their sixth victory.
For its part, La Celeste remains in fourth place with 16 units, but has added just one unit in this triple date that will end on Thursday against Brazil in Manaus.
Despite the result, Uruguay had a first half hour where they played Argentina on an equal footing and Suárez had three clear options to open the scoring but ‘Draw’ Martínez once again ratified his great moment to clear his goal.
At minute 6 the current Aston Villa goalkeeper had a double intervention against Suárez first and then Federico Valverde.
Two minutes later Giovani Lo Celso had his option but the ball was diverted in a first connection with Lionel Messi, who shone again with the Argentine jacket for a new ovation from the public that exhausted 50% of the available capacity for this classic River Plate for the coronavirus restrictions still in force.
At 20 minutes, ‘Dibujos’ Martínez responded again to a volley from Suárez, seven minutes later the stick prevented the fall of the local goal and in minute 31 the goalkeeper contained a header from Godín.
In the 32nd minute, De Paul enabled Lo Celso who managed to elude Muslera but his shot hit the crossbar and flirted with the goal but did not enter.
In the 36th, another team move ended with a shot just deflected by a Uruguayan defender after a shot from Messi and a minute later Muslera stopped a shot from the Paris Saint Germain player.
The goal was close and in the 38th minute Messi looked for a rained center to Nicolás González, who failed to connect but managed to confuse Muslera and the ball ended up in the net.
Messi then became the axis and in the 44th minute a cross from him left De Paul in front of the goal to define low and increase the advantage against a Muslera who could do little.
In the last minute of play Lautaro Martínez could have increased the difference even more, but Muslera responded again with solvency.
In the complement the dominance of Argentina continued. At 62 Messi enabled De Paul who took a low pass for Lautaro Martínez to define only in front of the goal.
Argentina, in this way, added a vital victory to consolidate its illusions of qualifying for the World Cup as soon as possible, while Uruguay will now travel urgently to Manaus to meet Brazil.