• News

Messi saves Argentina from embarrassment vs Paraguay

Getty Images

A penalty goal scored by Leo Messi in the second half and a Franco Armani intervention saved Argentine from certain defeat vs Paraguay.

What a complicated moment that Argentina is currently going through, they really struggled against Paraguay on Wednesday.

Having Lionel Messi hasn’t been as inconsequential as it is today for the national team, we can sense Leo’s frustration on every single ball that he touches.

The man is basically playing on his own, he is fighting against the current and trying to carry all the dead weight that his teammates represent for Argentina.

The only positive part of all this, is that the Argentine media outlets have finally realized that coming after Messi is not the best way to support their squad.

After losing against Colombia in the first Copa America match of the competition, Argentina desperately needed a victory against Paraguay in order to stay alive in the competition.

The task would be incredibly complicated for Messi and company, the Paraguay squad wasn’t an easy rival to beat in Belo Horizonte.

The first half gave us more of that team under construction that manager Lionel Scaloni is presenting, he chose to leave Sergio Aguero on the bench as we previously mentioned before the match.

Instead of ‘Kun’ and Di Maria, Saloni decided to give Lautaro Martinez and Roberto Pereyra a chance to play the initial part of this game.

However, the wager didn’t go as planned for Lionel Scaloni.

The Paraguay squad got a very lucky break during the first half after Richard Sanchez scored the first goal of the match.

A precise cross from Almiron was the difference during this first half, Argentina was starting to get increasingly frustrated because they were already losing the game.

Lionel Messi seemed alone on the pitch, he was the only player who represented any type of danger for his side.

Scaloni attempted to right his wrong of the first half by giving Sergio Aguero a chance to play from the start of the second half, he took Pereyra out for this.

Aguero’s impact was fast and steady, but it still didn’t seem enough for Argentina to get a proper approach to the Paraguay box.

Only a call from VAR was able to give the ‘Albiceleste’ a chance, it happened right after ‘Kun’ created the clearest chance of the game for his squad.

A handball was committed by the Paraguay defense, but the ref failed to see the action on sight.

The VAR officials took a long time to review the play, but it was a fair call that awarded a penalty to Argentina.

Lionel Messi got his chance to score the equalizer and he didn’t fail, the captain scored on his fourth Copa America since 2007.

Things appeared to get a little less complicated for Scaloni’s squad, but they were about to get complicated again.

A few minutes after Messi’s penalty goal during the second half, Nicolas Otamendi committed a stupid penalty that placed his squad in a compromised position.

Luckily for the ‘Albiceleste’, goalkeeper Franco Armani was inspired this evening.

The man saved the shot from Derlis Gonzalez in the most unexpected moment, he quickly rose up to silence all the jeers directed at him.

The game still had a good 20 minutes left to play, and Argentina still needed to win this match.

A single point wasn’t going to be enough for them, the Argentines desperately needed to win this game but it wasn’t going to be easy.

The Paraguay defense perked the bus and didn’t let any more players through, Lionel Messi seemed very tired with a few minutes still left on the clock.

The ref added a long six minutes after the full 90 were done, but not even that was enough for Argentina to get that victory.

Messi’s equalizer is the only reason Argentina still has a chance to qualify to the next round of the competition.

They got a valuable point that will only count for the next round if they defeat Qatar in the final match of Group B.

Paraguay has two units and they need a victory against Colombia in the last match of the group.

Everything is still wide open, all but Colombia’s first place that just got secured today.

Do you think Argentina will qualify to the Copa America quarterfinals? Please share your opinion in the comment section down below.