Lionel Messi inspired Argentina to a big win.
Argentina sailed past Uruguay 3-0 in the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers to take another massive step towards the Qatar showpiece. Lionel Messi, Rodrigo De Paul and Lautaro Martinez scored for the reigning Copa America champions, who bounced back from last week’s goalless draw against Paraguay.
The Celeste, meanwhile, were frustrated by Emiliano Martinez’s heroics between the sticks, with Luis Suarez denied on three occasions. Despite a handful of positive changes after the break, Oscar Tabarez’s side failed to conjure anything spectacular, and went down to Argentina.
They’re currently fourth in the CONMEBOL qualifying table, and face another tough match against leaders Brazil on Thursday, while Argentina host Peru.
On that note, here are the player ratings for Argentina:
Emiliano Martinez – 9/10
It was a terrific performance in goal by Argentina’s underrated goalkeeper who produced numerous fine saves to deny Uruguay. He was the Man of the Match on the night.
Nahuel Molina – 7/10
The 23-year-old held his ground well and defended resolutely, making three clearances. However, going forward, he lacked the end product.
Cristian Romero – 8.5/10
It was a complete performance from Romero. He kept everything tight at the back and read the game brilliantly, making four clearances and five tackles. His passing was top-notch too, playing a crucial role in regaining possession for Argentina.
Nicolas Otamendi – 6.5/10
He misplaced a few of his tackles, and was also given a rough time by Nunez.
Nicolas Tagliafico – 7.5/10
His best moments came at the other end of the pitch, where Tagliafico brought a new dimension to Argentina’s attack with his devastating link-up plays and blistering runs. He made three key passes too.
Leandro Paredes – 7/10
He was crucial to recycling the ball, and did his job pretty well, completing a stunning 96% of his passes. But other than that, there was little to see from him.
Rodrigo De Paul – 8.5/10
He doubled Argentina’s advantage with a composed finish beyond Fernando Muslera, and offered plenty of creativity, making five key passes. it was one of his best performance for the Sky Blues so far.
Giovani Lo Celso – 8.5/10
Another top performer for Argentina, Lo Celso bagged two assists on the night, and created three big chances. He connected with Messi to devastating effect.
Lionel Messi – 9/10
The heart and soul of Argentina, the captain was once again at his resounding best, running the show for his side. He also scored his 80th international goal.
Nicolas Gonzalez – 6.5/10
He put a lot of pressure on the Uruguayan defence with his off-the-ball pressing, and won a free-kick too, but was never a direct threat.
Lautaro Martinez – 7.5/10
The Inter Milan ace was wasteful in the first half, but recovered to score a goal after the break.
Ratings of Argentina substitutes against Uruguay
Angel Di Maria – 7.5/10
In a lively cameo, he switched play with Messi soon after coming on, and laid two superb crosses, the second of which nearly won them a penalty.
Joaquin Correa – 5/10
The game just flew by him, and Corres remained a spectator.
Exequiel Palacios – 6/10
He was tasked with patrolling the midfield for the last few minutes of the game, and did a good job.
Julian Alvarez – 6.5/10
The River Plate youngster appealed for a hand-ball late on, but it fell on deaf ears.
Facundo Medina – N/A
He passed the ball around well, but Medina didn’t have enough time to conjure anything meaningful.