World Cup 2022: Argentina defeat Australia 2-1 in thrilling contest after Socceroos historic run in Qatar

The Socceroos have failed to beat its 2006 result, going down to a world-class Argentinian squad 2-1.

Thousands gathered in Federation Square in Melbourne and Darling Harbour in Sydney to see the Socceroos hopefully make history and make the quarter finals for the first time ever.

After winning two games in a row – another record for Australia at the World Cup – against Tunisia and Denmark, Graham Arnold’s men came up against third ranked Argentina and its superstar forward Lionel Messi who is set to retire at the end of the tournament.

The Socceroos did well to keep the Little Master and his Argentinian squad quiet for 35 minutes at the Ahmad bin Ali Stadium in Doha until Messi put one in the lower left corner to give the South Americans a 1-0 lead.

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Argentina took a 2-0 advantage 12 minutes into the second half through a Julian Alvarez 57th minute goal.

But the Socceroos were not done.

Buoyed by the energy and spirit of their coach, the Australians continued to pepper the Argentinian goal.

The thrilling contest came down to the final minutes after Australia clawed back a 77th minute goal via a deflection of a brilliant Craig Goodwin from outside the box.

With seven minutes of stoppage time, both sides desperately tried to find the back of the net again.

A brilliant run by full-back Aziz Behich was sensationally defended, leaving an Australian tie and extra time almost out of reach.

But teenager wonder Garang Kuol nearly cemented his name into Socceroo legend with a fantastic opportunity in the 96th minute, before it was saved by Argentina’s keeper Emiliano Martínez.

While Argentina ended a dream Socceroos run, Graham Arnold spoke for the entire country when he said: “I have to be very proud of the players”.

“You know, we played against the number three in the world. And the first goal was just from Messi was a quality goal,” he said after the game. 

“I just hope that everyone back in Australia really respects what we’ve done and are proud of us as well. We took it to them.

“I felt that we finished off well. We had a great chance at the end there to equalise. I’ve got to be very, very proud of the boys. Just so grateful at the effort they’ve put in for me.”

In terms of stats, Argentina dominated Australia on the pitch with 61 per cent of possession compared to the Socceroos’ 39.

Messi’s men also secured 14 shots on goal while the Aussies could manage only five.

Argentina will now face the Netherlands in a highly-anticipated battle to see who progresses to the Semi-finals.

More to come.

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