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Colombia 2-2 Argentina: 5 Talking points as Lionel Messi's Argentina settle for a draw despite two early goals | FIFA World Cup Qualifiers 2022

Colombia v Argentina - FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar Qualifier
Colombia v Argentina - FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar Qualifier
ANALYST

Colombia staged a dramatic comeback and equalized in injury time to hold Argentina to a 2-2 draw in their FIFA World Cup qualifier fixture.

Cristian Romero and Leandro Paredes gave the visiting side a dream start. The Atalanta defender headed home a Rodrigo De Paul cross in the third minute and Paredes dribbled past a host of Colombian players to double their lead in the eighth minute.

After two goals in the first eight minutes of the game, Argentina had a few chances to add another but David Ospina made several impressive saves to ensure Colombia stayed in the game.

In the 40th minute, Argentina were forced to make a change when Emiliano Martinez fell head-first on the ground following a clash with Yerry Mina. The Colombian defender was booked for a reckless challenge.

This was the second change of the game. Colombia had replaced midfielder Jefferson Lerma with Luis Muriel in the 30th minute to add some more teeth to their attack.

Just as Argentina got off to a great start in the first half, after the break, it was Colombia's turn to shine. The hosts scored within six minutes of the restart and, thanks to Nicolas Otamendi's foul on Mateus Uribe, were awarded a penalty. Muriel made no mistake in converting from the spot.

Just when Argentina thought they had picked up three points from the game, Colombia won the ball near the box in injury time and it was passed on to Juan Cuadrado on the right flank.

The Juventus defender delivered an inch-perfect cross into the box which was met by Miguel Borja, whose header made it under the body of substitute goalkeeper Agustin Marchesin and into the back of the net.

As Argentina remain unbeaten in the World Cup qualifiers, here we take a look at the five talking points from the game.


#5 Argentina's bright start to the game undone by Colombia's resilience

Colombia v Argentina - FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar Qualifier
Colombia v Argentina - FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar Qualifier

Argentina could not have asked for a better start to the game, with two goals in the first eight minutes. While they continued to create chances despite their comfortable lead, as the game progressed, it was the home side that started to tighten their grip on the game.

Colombia also forced Argentina to adopt a five-at-the-back tactic in the second half. They made Otamendi commit an error in the box and earned a penalty early in the second half. They pushed on until the very last minute and were able to snatch a point from Argentina with an injury-time equalizer.


#4 Lionel Messi struggling to make things happen from open play

Colombia v Argentina - FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar Qualifier
Colombia v Argentina - FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar Qualifier

Lionel Messi was the sole goalscorer in Argentina's 1-1 draw last time around with Chile and that goal came from the penalty spot. Against Colombia too, the Barcelona man was not as effective from open play and his best chance came from a free-kick in the second half, which was saved by David Ospina.

It is sometimes difficult for fans to fathom the fact that a player who has scored 30 league goals and provided nine assists struggles in national colors just a couple of weeks later. The left-footed maestro has also recently lost the second place among active international goalscorers, with India's Sunil Chettri scoring his 74th goal on Monday.


Also See: 10 best players in La Liga this season (2020-21)

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Edited by Sankalp Srivastava
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