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No answers for Argentina versus Bolivia
Published in Bikya Masr on 13 - 11 - 2011

Argentina couldn't put away Bolivia.
Argentina came into Friday's match against Bolivia looking to get back on the right track after their shock defeat to Venezuela in the last round of fixtures. The Bolivians were able to snatch a point from Argentina in El Monumental Stadium with a final score of 1-1. Argentina had several chances to go ahead but sloppy finishing and a fortuitous play preserved the draw and sent Bolivia home happy.
Reigning World Player of the Year Lionel Messi led the front line along with Gonzalo Higuain but neither player would find their names on the score sheet.
In the 21st minute both were involved in what appeared to be a goal however it was waved off by the referee. A turnover allowed Messi to take off down field toward the heart of the Bolivian defense and at the last second before getting pushed to the turf passed off to Higuain who netted a goal. It appeared as though advantage should have been awarded but a free kick was given instead and nothing came of it.
Pastore came close to an opening goal but his shot from the edge of the box a few minutes later clanked off the bottom of the post. To be expected, Argentina enjoyed a majority of the possession throughout the game but could not execute in the first half.
The second half is when the match came alive. In the 55th a mistake in Argentina's backline committed by Martin Demichelis allowed the visitors to take the lead. Demichelis tried to control a bouncing ball deep in Argentina territory but while doing so Bolivian forward Marcelo Moreno swooped in and plucked the ball off his boots. Moreno made two nice moves to avoid the oncoming defenders and finished with a left footed blast at the near post to put his team ahead.
In the 59th Argentina finally broke through with a goal from substitute Ezequiel Lavezzi. The Napoli striker received a nice ball from Fernando Gago in the middle of the box and bent a low left footed shot around the keeper to even the score.
In the end neither Argentina nor Bolivia could find another goal. Bolivia should be pleased with the result which gave them their first point of the campaign. Argentina on the other hand has to be quite disappointed with not being able to capitalize. Heading into Monday's game against Colombia, Argentina sit on four points, three behind leaders Uruguay.
The top four CONMEBOL teams qualify automatically and the fifth place team will play against a team from the Asian Football Confederation.
CONMEBOL Scores:
Argentina 1-1 Bolivia
Uruguay 4-0 Chile
Colombia 1-1 Venezuela
Paraguay 2-1 Ecuador
BM


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