In the 2022 World Cup, Argentina was among the favorites to win. The South American side, led by one of the greatest of all time, Lionel Messi, is well-balanced.
Drawn up in Group C with Poland, Mexico, and Saudi Arabia, Argentina topped the table, winning and losing two games. In their opener against Saudi Arabia, they were stunned by a 2-1 loss to the latter, who became the first Asian team to beat Argentina in the World Cup at the fifth attempt. Saudi Arabia became the second non-European team to beat Argentina at the World Cup since Cameroon in 1990, after which Argentina won 13 games against such opponents before their opener against Saudi. If you want to know about Can Senegal Eliminate England?, click here.
A Familiar Path
Going into their second group stage match against Mexico, Argentina were unbeaten in their last 11 meetings in all competitions since a 1-0 loss in the 2004 Copa América. At the World Cup stage, Argentina dominated this match, with Mexico losing all four of their World Cup games against Argentina.
Against Mexico, the South American side kept their first clean sheet in seven World Cup matches since a goalless draw with the Netherlands in the 2014 semi-final, where they progressed to the final on penalties. Lionel Messi scored in the 64th minute and tied both rival Cristiano and idol Diego Maradona in World Cup goals.
Their win against Poland marked the fifth consecutive time Argentina has qualified from the group stage at the World Cup, matching up 2006, 2010, 2014, 2018, and 2022. They have progressed from the first-round group stage for the 13th time in their last 14 World Cup appearances.
Round of 16 Versus Australia
In their round of 16 matches against Australia on Saturday night, Argentina added weight to their bid for the trophy with a 2-1 win. Scoring in each half for Argentina prevented a late Australia surge from coming to fruition, sealing a 2-1 well-contested but deserved victory.
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Messi, who played his 1,000th game for club and country, scored his first World Cup knockout goal in style in the 35th minute. This win was their 5th out of the last six rounds of 16 matches at the World Cup, the only exception during this run coming in 2018 against eventual champions France.
Moving into the quarter-finals, Argentina is set to play the Netherlands, who has qualified after defeating the United States 3-1. This will be the 6th time the two sides clash in the World Cup. Argentina, who beat the Netherlands in the finals at the 1978 World Cup, also won their last matchup in 2014.
Will Argentina be able to hold off this formidable Dutch side?