Argentina vs Iceland highlights, FIFA World Cup 2018: ARG v ISL ends in stalemate
Get highlights of Argentina vs Iceland, FIFA World Cup 2018 Group D match, here. The Lionel Messi-led Argentina national football team played out a 1-1 draw against the Iceland national football team.football Updated: Jun 16, 2018 20:47 IST
Lionel Messi’s bid for FIFA World Cup redemption began in the worst way on Saturday when he led Argentina against tiny Iceland in a Group D match. Iceland, who impressed many with their showing in the 2016 European Championships thanks to their tactical astuteness, put in a similar shift to deny the two-time world champions. Messi had plenty of chances to score but could not find the back of the net, even missing a penalty that could have potentially been the winner. Get highlights of Argentina vs Iceland, FIFA World Cup 2018 Group C match, here. (FULL FIFA WORLD CUP 2018 COVERAGE)
8:30 PM IST: That’s it from our side, thank you so much for joining us! Do join us for more live coverage of the FIFA World Cup 2018.
8:25 PM IST: Full-time: Argentina 1-1 Iceland. Iceland earn a well-deserved point here, but the major talking point will be Messi and his numerous misses.
8:20 PM IST: 5 minutes added on.
8:15 PM IST: Iceland have shut shop very well at this point. Argentina need a miracle to get another goal.
8:10 PM IST: Messi comes so close! His shot from the edge of the box seems destined to find the back of the net but goes just wide.
8:08 PM IST: The game is drawing closer to its conclusion and it seems likely to end in a 1-1 draw.
8:02 PM IST: Messi - that man again - misses another good dead ball opportunity and Argentina are no closer to breaking the deadlock.
7:59 PM IST: If this remains the score at full-time, the headlines will undoubtedly be dominated by Messi’s miss. However, the bigger concern for Argentina is that they seem unable to break down compact defences.
7:56 PM IST: Argentina win a free-kick in a dangerous position and Messi once again cannot convert. This has been a frustrating evening for the forward.
7:53 PM IST: PENALTY MISSED BY MESSI! That’s a huge reprieve for Iceland. They conceded a silly penalty but Lionel Messi somehow hit it straight at the goalkeeper. Will that miss come back to haunt Argentina?
7:50 PM IST: Argentina need to make a couple of substitutions if they are going to force Iceland’s hand, because the European minnows would be more than content with this result.
7:45 PM IST: Neither side looking likely to score at this point. The game’s tempo has slowed down considerably.
7:40 PM IST: Iceland earn a corner but it comes to nothing. Given their height advantage over Argentina, it’s a bit surprising they’re not looking to use set pieces more as a goal-scoring chance.
7:37 PM IST: Argentina patiently looking to break down Iceland. Perhaps they need more urgency to break their well-oiled defence down. Otamendi heads over from a corner and that’s another chance gone begging.
7:33 PM IST: The second half is now underway. Can either side find a winner? We shall see.
7:17 PM IST: Half-time: Argentina 1-1 Iceland. Sergio Aguero’s opener was cancelled out by Finnbogason. All to play for in the second half.
7:11 PM IST: Argentina need to regroup in the break because Iceland have managed to nullify their top players very well. Sampaoli needs a Plan B because the tiny European nation have Plan A very well scouted.
7:08 PM IST: Iceland are very organised defensively. They’re denying Argentina space down the middle and forcing them wide, essentially nullifying their best players.
7:05 PM IST: With 10 minutes to go in the first half, Argentina are searching for another goal. Meanwhile, Iceland are the most clinical team in the tournament as of now, as they have only had one shot on target... which they converted.
7:00 PM IST: 30 minutes gone and this has been a thrilling game to watch. Both sides look up for it and the match is evenly poised as of now.
6:57 PM IST: Argentina are pushing forward hard in search of another goal before the break. Their defending will be the main thing worrying coach Sampaoli though.
6:54 PM IST: GOAAAAL! Iceland are level! That’s some sloppy defending that sees Finnbogason level the game for the underdogs.
6:50 PM IST: GOAAAAL! Argentina get the breakthrough and it’s Sergio Aguero who FINALLY breaks his World Cup duck, unleashing a venomous shot from inside the box to put his side ahead.
6:48 PM IST: Messi’s shot from outside the box is punched out by the Iceland goalkeeper. Argentina looking likelier to score at this point.
6:45 PM IST: The game has settled into a nice rhythm now. Argentina are keeping the ball while Iceland are looking to defend and take their chances in a patient manner.
6:42 PM IST: Iceland now coming close on two occasions to finding the back of the net. Argentina look shaky at the back; the sooner they score, the better for them.
6:39 PM IST: Oh and Argentina come so close to scoring from a free-kick again! Tagliafico’s header goes agonisingly wide of the post after Lionel Messi’s delivery.
6:36 PM IST: Argentina win a free-kick out wide but it comes to nothing. They’ve seen the lion’s share of the ball thus far.
6:33 PM IST: Argentina starting the game by keeping possession. Not that Iceland will mind; their whole game plan involves seeing less of the ball as they favour defensive solidity.
6:30 PM IST: The referee blows his whistle and we are underway!
6:25 PM IST: The players have emerged from the tunnel. Lionel Messi definitely looks nervous.
6:20 PM IST: Argentina’s biggest strength today will be their attacking play. The fact that players like Gonzalo Higuain and Paolo Dybala are only making the bench today says a lot about their depth in the attacking department.
6:10 PM IST: Twenty minutes to go till kick-off, and here’s something for you to chew on till then: Ronaldo’s record of scoring in eight consecutive international tournaments isn’t a record at all. Click here to find out why.
6:00 PM IST: It’s worth noting that this Iceland team, aside from functioning very well as a unit, have some talented individuals like Gylfi Sigurdsson and Aron Gunnarsson. This won’t be an easy game for Argentina.
5:50 PM IST: Argentina coach Jorge Sampaoli stunned a lot of people when he announced their starting Xi yesterday. Besides Messi, Sergio Aguero and Angel di Maria will lead the Argentina attack.
5:45 PM IST: Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the FIFA World Cup Group B match between Argentina and Iceland!
Iceland, with a population of only 330,000, is the smallest nation ever to reach the World Cup. In contrast, Argentina are two-time world champions and even made the finals last year.
Iceland stunned the football world when they reached the quarter-finals of Euro 2016, beating Austria and England on the way and they will be eager to continue their improvement at international level.
First Published: Jun 16, 2018 17:47 IST