Isco scored a hat trick as Spain romped to a 6-1 victory over Argentina in Madrid, where Lionel Messi again watched from the stands. (27 MAR 2018)
Sergio Aguero scored the only goal of the game as Russia and Argentina heralded a new chapter in the history of the Luzhniki Stadium, the flagship arena for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™. The match was a good test for both teams in the build-up to the tournament next summer.
Argentina continued the trend from their World Cup qualifiers, creating plenty of chances but only managing to convert one in the final moments of the game. In the 86th minute, Aguero had a shot that Igor Akinfeev parried, but the striker was quickest to the rebound and headed into an empty net. (11 NOV 2017)
Argentina endured an anxious build-up to their high-altitude date with destiny in Quito, which began with them in sixth place, out of the qualifying places altogether. The only previous occasion on which the country had missed out on a world finals place was in at Mexico 1970, and it looked as if a second failed qualifying campaign was on the cards when Ecuador took the lead after just 40 seconds. But then Messi appeared, and with him his team-mates.
Thanks to his efforts, the Brazil 2014 runners-up will be making their 17th FIFA World Cup appearance, this after scoring only 19 goals, their second lowest tally since France 1998, when the current home-and-away round-robin league format was adopted. (10 OCT 2017)
Argentina had no cause to celebrate their draw with Venezuela in Buenos Aires, however, as they missed out on a golden opportunity to move into a direct qualification places and put pressure on their rivals. Jhon Murillo gave the visitors the lead only for Rolf Feltscher to put through his own goal only minutes later. Lacking in ideas, La Albiceleste were booed off by their fans. (05 SEP 2017)