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Peru 0-2 Argentina: 5 Talking Points as visitors remain unbeaten | South American World Cup Qualifiers 2022

Peru v Argentina - South American Qualifiers for Qatar 2022
Peru v Argentina - South American Qualifiers for Qatar 2022
Modified 18 Nov 2020, 09:26 IST

Argentina signed off the year with a comfortable 2-0 win over Peru on the road in their South American Qualifier for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Goals from Nicolas Gonzalez and Lautaro Martinez in the first half proved enough to secure the three points from the game. Lionel Messi played the full 90 minutes and was denied twice by Pedro Gallese in the second half.

Argentina got an early lead in the 17th minute through Nicolas Gonzalez, who scored for the second game running. The 22-year-old controlled Giovani Lo Celso's ball with a brilliant first touch and beat Pedro Gallese with a driven left-foot effort. The goal came completely against the run of the play, as up to that point, it was the home side that dominated the possession and looked confident in their passing.

Inter Milan forward Lautaro Martinez doubled the visitors' lead in the 28th minute after Leandro Paredes set him up with a great through-ball. Martinez saw Gallese coming off his line and made him commit early with a dummy, then rolled the ball into the empty net from a tight angle.

Peru's resurgence in the final minutes of the first half was inspiring, but their lack of intent had already cost them a couple of clear goal-scoring chances. It was a similar story when play resumed after the break for La Blanquirroja, who just could not find that final ball into the box. They did come close from two freekicks but the finishing touch was just not there.

The game became monotonous in the second half, with Peru failing to get past the Argentina defence. There was a moment in the second half when Messi danced past every Peruvian defender and found himself one-on-one with Gallese, but his effort was deflected behind for a corner.

Argentina won in Peru for the first time since 2004 to make it three wins from four matches, and we take a look at the five major talking points from the game.


#5 Peru could not deliver the decisive ball

Peru v Argentina - South American Qualifiers for Qatar 2022
Peru v Argentina - South American Qualifiers for Qatar 2022

In both halves, it was clear that Peru were playing the better football of the two sides, especially in the midfield. They maintained roughly 55% possession and moved the ball around the Argentinean players with ease, but had nothing to show for their efforts, mainly because of their hesitancy to deliver the ball into the box.

The hosts were unable to record a shot on target until the 73rd minute, which tells you all you need to know about their struggles tonight. They sorely missed Paolo Guerrero and Jefferson Farfan tonight. They recorded zero shots on target from open play and only seemed to threaten from set-pieces.

#4 Quality in Argentina's squad proves the differentiator

Peru v Argentina - South American Qualifiers for Qatar 2022
Peru v Argentina - South American Qualifiers for Qatar 2022

Apart from the two moments of excellence produced by Gonzalez and Martinez in the first half-hour of the game, there was not much to appreciate during Argentina's game against Peru.

Looking back on this win, coach Lionel Scaloni will be thankful for the quality of his attackers, who produced not one but two goals against the run of the play.

Both sides had similar stats by the end of the game in terms of the number of passes made and passing accuracy. But La Albiceleste were more potent going forward and recorded 14 shots with three on target, as compared to 10 shots with only one on target for Peru.

If only finishers like Martinez and Gonzalez were in the Red and White, the scoreline would've ended in Peru's favour tonight.

Also See: Top 10 quotes on Lionel Messi

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Published 18 Nov 2020, 09:26 IST
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