Well… Well… Well.. Didn’t see that coming.
The most upsetting display from one of the favourite team to win the World Cup at the very group stage against an outstanding night for a team named Croatia, and yes of course everyone would have guessed it by now the upsetting team is Argentina.
After the match the Argentinian fans were in tears as they can see the graveyard that they have dug to bury themselves and go home from the world cup at the very group stage.
The match started with a must win situation for Argentina and also as favourites to win the match. The match started promisingly where both the teams had a positive approach towards the match where Ivan Perisic had the first glimpse of the Argentinian goal as his shot was deflected away by Caballero.
After this there were some moments of madness at both the team’s defensive half where there was a backpass from the Argentinian defender Otamendi to Caballero who just had a softest of pass to Tagliafico which was almost received by the Croatian striker Mandzukic which was momentarily saved because of a foul by the striker on Tagliafico. The best chance out of the entire match for Argentina was actually handed by a miscommunication between the Liverpool defender Dejan Lovren and goalkeeper Subasic which led to a chance for the Argentinian Enzo Perez to score in an open and gaping goal, but only managed to steer the shot in the wrong side of the net. Moments later Mandzukic also got a beautiful cross from the right flank and he was unmarked and was in a one on one situation with Caballero but only guided the header wide across the goal. The half ended with parity as none of the teams were able to score.
In the second half, the epic mistake by Willy Caballero costed Argentina heavily as he misplaced a chipped pass and fell in the kind feet of Rebic who pounced on and smashed a beautiful volley which looked like Roger Federer’s front hand smash in the court of Wimbledon to open the score tally for Croatia. Sampaoli was in utter shock along with the players and Agentinian fans. After this incident Argentina actually never recovered resulting in a beautiful brace shot from Luka Modric which curled with power from 25 yards out to beat Caballero once again.
Argentinian defeat was sealed with that goal. But the rubbing of salt on the wound was done by the final goal that was scored by Rakitic, in which every Argentinian player stood like statues, no tackles no pressing, just stood still devastated and almost wanting the referee to blow the whistle.
The talisman Lionel Messi had rather a quiet and non influential game, he also looked devastated by the performance. Whereas another captain LM10 was the star of the match. Yes he is Luka Modric.
Many fans and football pundits are pointing towards the selection of squad and the formation in which the team played. But as of now for Argentinian fans and even the saddened face of Diego Maradona in the stands today can only pray for a Nigerian win against Iceland tomorrow to have the slightest of chances to make it through to the round of 16 and prevent themselves to catch an early flight back to Buenos Aires from Moscow, provided they win their last group match against the team that they would pray for to win tomorrow.