Let us have a look at the most interesting results from yesterday’s qualifiers!
First things first, Messi’s Argentina beat Uruguay 3-0 in a South American World Cup qualifier to close the gap on the Brazilians who drew against Colombia the day before. The definite standout of the match was the first goal of the game by non-other than Lionel Messi.
He crossed the ball into the box, but it missed both the Argentina striker González and the Uruguay goalkeeper Muslera and it just slipped right into the net! Reporters from all over the world immediately called it one of the most bizarre goals of Messi’s career! De Paul scored the second goal after sprinting around the Uruguay defence to get to a rebound. Finally, Lautaro Martinez scored the last one into an empty net after a lovely pass from Lo Celso.
Uruguay will now face Brazil on Friday and they will have to put everything they have into the match if they want to stay up in the qualification spots.
Another fun match took place in Osijek between Croatia and Slovakia. The game had no winner as the teams finished even 2-2. For Slovakia, this is bad news. If they wanted to keep their hopes of qualifying to Qatar alive, they had to win, but they only managed to get a single point, and thus they failed. The Slovaks led two times throughout the game but they couldn’t keep the Croats at bay and they failed to stay on top. Croatia even scored a third goal in the final minutes of the bout, but it was quickly waved off because of an offside and so the final result is a draw.
Croatia are now in 2nd place with 17 points behind only Russia with 19. The two will meet on the 14th of November and it is likely this match will decide the group winner!
Yesterday also saw several matches where one team dominated the other one. Iceland went up against Liechtenstein and clearly owned the match 4-0. Liechtenstein are still left without a win at the bottom of Group J, while Iceland are just above them in 5th, also with very little chance of qualifying.
Speaking of Group J, the group-leading team Germany beat Northern Macedonia 4-0 in what could simply be called an annihilation. Timo Werner scored two and Kai Havertz one. Both attackers will hope to carry their form into their next Chelsea game against Brentford on Saturday when the Premier League comes back after the international break.
The last and the biggest domination of last night came from the feet of the Netherlands who crushed the tiny nation of Gibraltar 6-0. Memphis Depay led his team with 2 goals and 2 assists. The Netherlands had over 30 shots while Gibraltar only managed 1!
The second-place race in Group E continues between the Czech Republic and Wales as the Czechs beat Belarus 2-0 and the Welsh beat Estonia 1-0. Both teams now have 11 points.
Group G looks similar. Norway sit in 2nd with 17 points after beating Montenegro 2-0 last night, while Turkey occupy the 3rd spot with 15 points after just about getting a win over Latvia with a 90+9 minute goal by Burak Yilmaz!