As expected from every tournament, which includes the World Cup of course, there will be some routine results, some nerve racking one and everyone’s favorite, the upsets.
This World Cup has had its fair share of upsets with Mexico defeating world champions, Germany, that sent shock waves around the world. With Argentina drawing their first game against Iceland, it was going to be an interesting encounter against a Croatia side that had three points in the bag following their victory over my Nigeria, so it was an all-or-nothing for both sides.
The eyes of the world were on Lionel Messi and we expected him to come to the party following his sub standard showing against Iceland. Croatia actually matched them pound for pound but unlike IR Iran that rolled over and played dead for Spain, Croatia played their football and got rewarded for their efforts when Argentina’s Willy Caballero fluffed his clearance to allow Rebic smash the net to put Croatia ahead. At this level, it was quite embarrassing.
At one down, I expected the Argentines to push forward and take the game by the scruff of its neck but the better chances still went to Croatia. The second goal from their captain, Luka Modric, was quite magical. He whizzed his way past a couple of markers before blasting a piledriver past the hapless Caballero in goal. Ivan Rakitic almost added insult to injury when his free kick clipped the cross bar but Croatia got their third goal of the night when a defensive lapse allowed Mateo Kovacic to tee Rakitic who guided the ball into the net to make it 3-0.
With this result, Argentina will be hoping for Nigeria to do them a favor against Iceland, as a win for the Super Eagles will but the group in the balance for the last match day. With two wins from two, Croatia is assured of qualification so their manager can afford to take his foot off the pedal in the last game against Iceland.
That’s the World Cup for you, but hey, don’t cry 3 me Argentina.