Argentina beat Bolivia 2-1 on Tuesday in South American World Cup qualifiers — the second consecutive victory for Lionel Messi’s group and its first within the altitude of La Paz since 2005.
Uruguay wasn’t so fortunate. After a hard-fought win towards Chile within the opening recreation, Uruguay misplaced Four-2 at Ecuador. Its solely objectives got here from the spot within the ultimate minutes of the encounter in Quito, when the hosts already appeared positive of their victory.
La Paz has outdated traumas for Argentina in World Cup qualifiers. The most important was in 2009, when Bolivia had an astonishing 6-1 win over Messi’s group. The famous person additionally did not impress in 2017, dropping 2-Zero within the Bolivian capital.
Historical past appeared set to repeat after Marcelo Martins opened the scoring for the hosts with a straightforward header within the 24th minute, elevating the specter of one other unhealthy day for the Argentina group Three,600 meters (11,800 ft) above sea stage within the Bolivian capital.
However in first-half stoppage time, Bolivia defender José Carrasco did not clear near the road and the ball hit the appropriate leg of Argentina striker Lautaro Martinez and went into the web.
The objective made Martinez the primary Argentina participant apart from Messi to attain in a World Cup qualifier since a Three-Zero house win towards Colombia in 2016. Seven matches befell in between.
Simply when the draw appeared to be adequate for Argentina, whose gamers have been clearly taking their time to catch their breath, Bolivia made one other expensive defensive mistake within the 79th.
Messi discovered Martinez on the sting of the field. The striker calmly assisted unmarked Joaquin Correa, who beat goalkeeper Carlos Lampe with a left-foot shot.
“It was an important win within the altitude, the place it prices extra,” Messi mentioned in his social media channels. “There’s nonetheless lots to go, the qualifiers have simply began, and we’re very glad for these two wins.”
Bolivia’s nationwide group is mired in a political battle between golf equipment and the game’s nationwide governing physique. A lot of its important gamers are sitting out World Cup qualifiers.
In Quito, the hosts opened the scoring within the 15th minute with Moises Caicedo. Michel Estrada scored a brace, with objectives in first-half stoppage time and the 52nd minute. Gonzalo Plata netted the fourth within the 75th.
Luis Suárez scored Uruguay’s two from the spot within the 84th and in added time.
Additionally on Tuesday, Brazil and Colombia can equal Argentina’s six factors in the event that they beat Peru and Chile away, respectively.