Saturday June 7, 2014 Friendlies Finished Estadio Ciudad de La Plata

Argentina 2 - 0 Slovenia

  • Álvarez 12’
  • Messi 75’

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  1. International friendlies - Messi comes off the bench to help Argentina to win

    International friendlies - Messi comes off the bench to help Argentina to win

    Lionel Messi came off the bench to secure Argentina a dominant 2-0 victory over Slovenia at the Estadio Monumental in Buenos Aires. More

  • Live Commentary

    • Argentina
    • Slovenia
    • And that is full time! A routine win for Argentina. No thrills.
    • 90+3 Slovenia now try and break again but a loose pass from Lazarevic and it breaks down gifting the ball and certainly a clean sheet to Argentina.
    • 90+2 Slovenia trying to get something out of the game but clever Argentine pressing sends them backwards.
    • 90+1 Again he thumps it into the wall and Belec just needs to pluck the ball out of the air.
    • 90' Perez goes on a mazy runthrough the middle and draws a foul from Mertejl. 35 yards out and that man Messi is over it.
    • 89' Messi looks like he wants to go on a dribble from the half way linebut opts against it and lays the ball backwards to Gago who simply retains possession.
    • 88' Balazic comes on for Cesar at the back for Slovenia.
    • 87' Switch out to Rojo who just recycles the possession back across the pitch.
    • 86' Messi slips the ball into Di Maria who tries to give it back to Messi in a shooting position but he can't get it to gim and the attack breaks down.
    • 85' Slovenia make some changes to their side. Mertelj and Firer come on for Stevanovic and Rotman.
    • 84' Di Maria breaks and gets to around 30 yards out. He shifts it on to his left foot before trying to bend one in from distance but it bounces wide.
    • 83' Lazarevic skips away from Messi before running the length of the pitch. He comes inside to Rotman who goes wide again to Brecko. Slovenia still with it as they try to find a gap in this defence.
    • 82' BRecko with a good ball into the box but Fernandea heads clear before Novakovic could get on the end of it.
    • 81' Stevanovic is back on his feet thankfully but looking groggy.
    • 80' Foul as Perez goes in heavily on Stevanovic who looks in serious pain.
    • 79' SLoppy from Argentina again as Stevanovic comes forward on a break after a loose Mascherano pass.
    • 78' Brecko again tries to come forward and plays the ball on to Novakovic who can't get on to the ball.
    • 77' Slovenia try to come forward through Brecko but Argentina do well to get the ball back again.
    • 76' UNBELIEVABLE GOAL! Di Maria scoops the ball over the Slovenian defence to Aguero who nods the ball down to Messi who from five yards can't miss as he slots past the goalkeeper. Beautiful stuff.
    • 75' Novakovic spreads it wide to Brecko who puts a cross in which is blocked by Rojo. They go backwards as Di Maria dispossesses Pecnic.
    • 74' Mascherano to Gago who goes wide to Di Maria on the right. And Argentina go back inside before hitting long for Aguero running in behind but the Slovenian defence deal with it.
    • 73' Gago plays the ball into Aguero on the egde of the area but he is being held by Cesar who manages to thwart the attack.
    • 72' Players taking on water and fresh instruction as Lazerevic receives treatment.
    • 71' Absolutely beautiful turn from Lazarevic away from Fernandez who in trying to recover takes him out. The substitute is on the floor clearly hurt by that. Very silly challenge. Lucky he doesn't have a World Cup to miss.
    • 70' Now it is Argentina's turn to pass the ball about and not really go anywhere....
    • 69' Slovenia confident on the ball as Cesar strides past Messi and brings the ball out of defence. HAd the ball for a minute or so now!
    • 68' Novakovic with a lovely flick round the corner for Stevanovic but he is stood offside and Argentina get the ball back.
    • 67' Lazarevic is almost in as Perez slips but Romero is out very quickly to gather.
    • 66' Di Maria with a huge switch to Messi who tries to wriggle his way into the box. HE goes down easy from a challenge by Cesar asking for a penalty but the ref waves it away.
    • 65' Rojo is released in space on the left. He plays it in to Aguero in the box. He spins Ilic with ease and sends a ball across the face of goal but no teammates were up with him for a tap in.
    • 64' Jokic gives the ball to Messi on the half way line. He plays it to Gago who lays it back to Messi with a backheel to roars from the crowd.
    • 63' Di Maria strikes with his left foot from 30 yards but scuffs it and the ball goes harmlessly wide.
    • 62' Bit more tempo to the match now as Slovenia start to hassle and harry while Argentina move the ball much quicker.
    • 61' Slovenia with some calm possession but Messi robs them and runs at the defence. He lays it to Di Maria but he cant control fast enough as the defenders get back at him.
    • 60' Messi strikes it but it got deflected off the wall and took the ball closer to the goalkeeper who saved with ease.
    • 59' Messi wins a free kick within shooting distance as he is tripped by Cesar. Messi stands over it from 30 yards.
    • 58' Chance Slovenia as Lazarevic pulls the ball back to Novakovic but as he turns and shoots he scuffs it and Romero can save with ease.
    • 57' The cavalry arrive. Messi, Aguero, Di Maria and Gago all come on. Replacing Alvarez, Lavezzi, Fernandez and Maxi.
    • 56' Lazarevic comes inside from the left and lets a shot go. But Romero saves with ease.
    • 55' GREAT SAVE. Lavezzi hassles Samardzic and lays it back to Alvarez who shot from close range but Belec stuck out a leg and keeps the score at 1-0.
    • 54' ALvarez cushions a header down to Fernandez who lays it back to him. HE plays it wide to Perez on the overlap but he tries to overcomplicate things with an intricate pass inside which is cut out.
    • 53' SLovenia break with Pecnic on the right but Rojo sprints back and blocks to give away a corner.
    • 52' Yellow card for Mascherano as he goes in late on Brecko.
    • 51' Perez goes on a little run too. He sprints through the middle and almost finds a gao into the goal but is thwarted by Cesar who stepped in.
    • 50' Mascherano goes on a little foray but when he finds himself surrounded pops the ball off to Alvarez who sends the ball backwards.
    • 49' Lavezzi finds Perez on the right in acres of space. He delivers a dangerous cross but Slovenia clear.
    • 48' Rojo disposses Stevanovic expertly in the middle and sets Argentina back on the front foot.
    • 47' Basanta plays a lovely ball out to Alavarez on the left but as he tries to take it past Samardzic, he trips him and gives away a free kick.
    • 46' And we're underway again. Lets hope for a slightly higher tempo from both sides! One change for Slovenia as Ilcicic comes off and Pechnik comes on. Lazarevic also comes on for Kirm.
    • And that is half time. I think 'pedestrian' would fairly describe that half.
    • 45+1 Lavezzi does well to force an error from Ilic on the right wing. He tries to play a one-two with Enzo Perez on the edge of the area but the ball back to him is cut out.
    • 45' Poor touch from Maxi allows Ilicic to break with the ball. He plays it to Brecko who took a bad shot with his left foot which Romero gathered with ease.
    • 44' Kirm breaks on the left wing. He tries to take on Mascherano who is over but dispossess him with too much ease there.
    • 43' Some late pressure here as SLovenia start slinging balls into the box causing the full backs all sorts of problems. Ilicic with one to the far post where Campagnaro had to be alert to flick the ball away.
    • 42' Fernandez with a silly foul on Novakovic on the left side with his back to goal. The ball comes over but Mascherano is there to clear.
    • 41' Sloppy possession again and this time Brecko is allowed a free run at the Argentina defence but Ricky Alvarez does well to get back and win a throw for his team.
    • 40' Stevanovic plays a ball into Novakovic but his lay off to Rotman is weak and allows Rojo in to win the ball back.
    • 39' Kurtic trips Mascherano on the half way line. Argentina go short and play to Perez on the right but Cesar defends well and forces them back.
    • 38' Ilicic swings over a low free kick from the right wing but after a couple of ricochets the ball is cleared by Basanta.
    • 37' Terrible scuff from Romero gifts the ball to Rotman who can't control the ball and instead has to win a throw off Rojo.
    • 36' Ilicic finds himself with space in front of him in midfield. He advances and strikes but it is way off target.
    • 35' Argentina have been oddly sloppy in possession for a lot of this game.
    • 34' Free kick to Argentina on the left wing. Maxi finds Lavezzi who lays it back to the winger. His right footed strike is tipped onto the post. What a save!
    • 33' Stevanovic fouls Maxi. The free kick is floated to the far post where Rojo almost found himself in but Belec managed to gather.
    • 32' Brecko in space on the right but his cross is poor. Slovenia recycle the ball out to Jokic in the left who plays a one-two with Kirm before delivering but Mascherano clears.
    • 31' Good pressure from Novakovic on Romero who is forced to punt the ball out of play.
    • 30' Ilicic is almost put through as some sloppy Argentine passing puts them in trouble but Romero is out of his box in a flash to clear.
    • 29' Guess what is happening again... Yes, slow walking pace football on the half way line from Argentina...
    • 28' A lovely switch wide to Rojo is unfortunately called offside as he laid in Alvarez with his first touch.
    • 27' Lavezzi picks up the ball on the half way line. Is tripped by Rotman and the Slovak is booked.
    • 26' Campagnaro goes on a little run on the right and lays it to Mascherano in the middle. He plays a lovely through ball to Maxi in the box. He is one-on-one but his shot is poor and Belec gets down low to save. Could have been two.
    • 25' The ball comes in but Romero gets a good fist on it and sets Argentina on a counter but Maxi takes time in the middle and Slovenia get numbers back.
    • 24' Slovenia back with the ball with Jokic on the left. He goes on a little foray but is forced backwards before the ball is spread wide to BRecko on the right. He delivers a good cross but Campagnaro is there and clears for a corner.
    • 23' Lavezzi swings the corner in, the first of the game, but it is cleared and Argentina build from the back again.
    • 22' Rojo delivers a dangerous ball in from the left but it is headed clear by Ilic. The ball is recycled back to Rojo who swings it in again but only Lavezzi is in the box and it is cleared.
    • 21' Mascherano trying to put some impetus into the midfield as he spreads ot to Rojo but a loose pass allows Kirm in but he can't take advantage as Campagnaro mops up and releases Enzo Perez on the right.
    • 20' Guess what!? More slow possession around the half way line for Argentina... This could get tedious.
    • 19' Naughty naughty. Kirm picks up a yellow as he barges Enso Perez out of the way as he tried to break forward on the right wing.
    • 18 Very comfortable for Argentina. Little pressure on the ball from Slovenia as the home side just knock the ball about at the back.
    • 17' Mascherano attempts a switch to Fede on the left but he overhits it. The crowd seem to appreciate the effort though as they make a loud din as Mascherano apologises.
    • 16' More possession in the middle for Argentina.
    • 15' Lavezzi turns and give the ball to Alvarez on the right wing. He comes inside to Maxi who goes backwards to Campagnaro. Looks like Argentina are happy to keep possession.
    • 14' Early change as Biglia is forced off through injury. Campagnaro comes on.
    • 13' Slovenia back now with the ball as they try to claw back a goal. A long ball over the top for Novakovic runs straight through to Romero.
    • 12' RICARDO ALVAREZ WHAT A GOAL! He picks it up on the left and drifts inside. Don't know where the defence was as he just came in on his left and struck from the edge of the area into the bottom corner. Lovely goal.
    • 11' Good ball into Lavezzi's feet on the penalty area but his ball out left to maxi was poor and allowed Brecko in to clear away.
    • 10' Biglia still limping about. He may need to come off here or risk making what looks like a small knock into a serious one.
    • 9' Sharp passing from Slovenia on the left gets them out of trouble as Novakovic miscontrols but they keep the ball well. Kirm and Ilicic combine but Mascherano trips the latter and gives away a foul.
    • 8' Not a good start. Biglia is tripped up and Mascherano goes over to check on him as he clutches his knee. Bit of concern here but the battling midfielder is back up to play again.
    • 7' Maxi pummelled to the floor on the half way line. Silly challenge really by Rotman. Maxi doesn't look happy but he is back on his feet.
    • 6' Sloppy pass from Mascherano in the middle who gets pickpocketed by Rotman who broke but Rojo got back to help out and spare the blushes of Macherano.
    • 5' Slovenia now enjoying some possession at the back. Argentina look in no hurry to press them and get it back.
    • 4' Ilicic picks up the ball and sprints at the Argentine back four. He plays it wide to Jokic but he loses it before he can get a cross over to Novakovic who had taken up a good position in the middle.
    • 3' First blood Slovenia as Kirm picks up the ball and runs past two defenders before trying to pick out Novakovic with the through ball but Rojo got back to head clear.
    • 2' As you'd expect, Argentina have had most of the ball in the opening exchanges. Haven't got close to the Slovenian final third just yet though.
    • 1' And we're underway! Argentina will want a huge victory here to boost their confidence before the big tournament. No injuries as well, always a bonus! Last minute change as well, Mascherano starts and captains the side ahead of Hugo Campagnaro.
    • 19:40 ODDS: And with five minutes to go before kick off, we've got some odds for you. As you can imagine, Argentina are heavy favourites at 1/5 while Slovenia can be backed at a long 14/1. A draw at 5/1 is a decent price but probably an ill-advised bet.
    • 19:35 Messi has 39 goals in 81 caps for Argentina. Not quite as impressive as his club record but pretty strong nonetheless. The man replacing him tonight, Gonzalo Higuain has scored 22 times for his country in just 36 appearances. That is very impressive and I'd fancy him to bag a couple more tonight.
    • 19:30 Slovenia have little to play for but pride as they did not qualify for the World Cup. Aside from Ilicic up front this should be a relatively easy run out for Argentina. They'll be looking for a confidence boosting win a week before the games start to matter!
    • 19:25 So the big news from the Argentina camp is that Lionel Messi starts on the bench having played 90 minutes against Trinidad and Tobago last week. One would imagine Sabella knows how he is going to use the little magician so no need to risk injury so close to the World Cup. Higuain and Lavezzi have a chance to impress while Aguero, Messi and Di Maria aren't there to steal the show.
    • 19:20 TEAMS - ARGENTINA: Romero, Campagnaro, Fede Fernandez, Basanta, Rojo, Biglia, A. Fernandez, Enzo Perez, Rodriguez, Lavezzi, Higuain /// SLOVENIA: Belec, Brečko, Cesar, Ilič, Jokič, Rotman, Stevanovič, Kurtič, Kirm, Iličič, Novakovič.
    • 19:15 Hello and welcome to our LIVE coverage of Argentina's final warm up game against Slovenia before they start their World Cup campaign. Team news to follow shortly...
  • Summary

    • 76' UNBELIEVABLE GOAL! Di Maria scoops the ball over the Slovenian defence to Aguero who nods the ball down to Messi who from five yards can't miss as he slots past the goalkeeper. Beautiful stuff.
    • 52' Yellow card for Mascherano as he goes in late on Brecko.
    • 27' Lavezzi picks up the ball on the half way line. Is tripped by Rotman and the Slovak is booked.
    • 19' Naughty naughty. Kirm picks up a yellow as he barges Enso Perez out of the way as he tried to break forward on the right wing.
    • 12' RICARDO ALVAREZ WHAT A GOAL! He picks it up on the left and drifts inside. Don't know where the defence was as he just came in on his left and struck from the edge of the area into the bottom corner. Lovely goal.

Team Line-up & Ratings

  • Line-up

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    • Player Y! Users Expert My Rating
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      Yellow Card Substitution Out76′ - -
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      Substitution Out57′ - -
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      Goal Substitution Out57′ - -
      Substitution Out57′ - -
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      Substitution In57′ Goal - -
      Substitution In57′ Yellow Card - -
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      Substitution In76′ - -
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      Substitution Out86′ - -
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      Yellow Card Substitution Out81′ - -
      Yellow Card Substitution Out45′ - -
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      Substitution Out86′ - -
      Substitution In45′ - -
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      Substitution In81′ - -
      Substitution In86′ - -
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