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Messi leads Argentina comeback over Colombia
Published in Bikya Masr on 16 - 11 - 2011

Argentina got back to their winning ways with a comeback victory against Colombia in CONMEBOL World Cup Qualifying. Lionel Messi and Sergio Agüero guided the Albiceleste to a 2-1 against a Colombia side with high expectations coming into the match.
It is fair to say that recently Argentina has not been playing up to the standards that the public and the players believe they should be. With poor results at home and away including an historic loss in Venezuela and an underwhelming draw at home against perennial minnows Bolivia the match against Colombia posed a sturdy challenge.
Argentina came out and controlled possession in the first half but could not break the deadlock. In front of a raucous crowd both sides showed their attacking verve. It was not until a set piece situation late in the half did the game really open up.
In the 44th Diego Pabon gunned in a low free kick from the edge of the area. His ball slid through a crack in the Argentine wall and took a deflection off of Barcelona midfielder Javier Mascherano.
“We had the ball more than them. They wanted to play us on the counter attack but we didn't give them any chances. The goal was bad luck, a rebound,” Messi said to reporters after the match.
Coming out for the second half Argentina was determined to turn things around. After the hour mark Messi backed up his words with a goal of his own.
The Argentine captain collected a pass from Jose Sosa from 25 yards out and gave a nice move to evade a defender. He then slid it back to Sosa on a through ball who drove in a low cross in front of goal. Colombia goalie David Ospina could not hold on and Messi was there to pounce on the mistake.
In the 84th another error would cost Colombia again. After a breakaway Messi juked a defender who got a pass off to Gonzalo Higuain. The Real Madrid hit man gave a fake then forced Ospina into a diving save. The blocked ball rolled out into the open in front of goal. Sergio Agüero ran up and put it away at the near post.
Argentina looked the superior side throughout the night and should be pleased with their response to the Colombia goal. The Barcelona starlet commented that, “the truth is that it was important to win, we knew we left a bad image after the Bolivia match… We played as we should have and the group responded spectacularly.”
Colombia 1-2 Argentina
Ecuador 2-0 Peru
Chile 2-0 Paraguay
Venezuela 1-0 Bolivia

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