Argentina easily beats Poland and wins the group – game report & network reactions

Argentina easily beats Poland and wins the group – game report & network reactions

Julian Alvarez, Nahuel Molina

©Getty Images

Argentina effortlessly beat Poland 2-0 to advance to the round of 16 as group winners. The network reactions and the game report.

Argentina are group winners in the round of 16 of the World Cup – and thus also avoid defending champions France in the round of 16. Argentina won 2-0 against completely defenseless Poland on the last day of the group.

1-0 Mac Allister (46′)
2-0 Alvarez (67′)

The starting position before the final group game was clear: one point is enough for Poland, Argentina not necessarily. Accordingly, the pressure was clearly on Lionel Messi and Co., who were already threatened with the completely surprising end in the group phase. Speaking of Messi: if things went badly, the game against Poland would be La Pulga’s last World Cup game ever! So history was – at least hypothetically – in the air.

Right from the start the picture was exactly what the starting position had promised: Poland left Robert Lewandowski alone on the halfway line and otherwise defended with ten men. Argentina, on the other hand, kept possession and looked for a gap in the Polish bulwark.

It was mostly individual actions, presented by Lionel Messi, Angel di Maria or Julian Alvarez, that caused danger. Although Poland was extremely low, Argentina kept coming up with dangerous final situations.

The effort finally paid off: after a big chance from Alvarez, thwarted by the once again outstanding Wojciech Szczesny, the Manchester City striker brought the ball up to the back post, where Szczesny hit the ball wide and found Messi instead. After looking at the pictures, the referee decided on a penalty – an extremely tough decision.

Lionel Messi, who else, grabbed the ball – and failed at Sczesny, who guessed the corner! It’s the second saved penalty in the group stage for the Juventus goalkeeper, but it’s the second missed for La Pulga!

Argentina’s game against Szczesny continued in the second half, but this time with a direct result: after a minute’s play, right-back Molina found Mac Allister with his cross, who wobbled the ball into the bottom left corner – the lead, which was completely overdue, and at the same time that Brighton & Hove Albion attacking midfielder’s first international goal.

It was getting uncomfortable for Poland, as Mexico landed a double in the parallel game after half-time and were thus close to Poland, who were tied on points.

Lewandowski and Co. continued to refuse possession of the ball and left the field completely to Argentina. Not a good idea, because Argentina was getting really excited about football games.

One of the beautiful combinations then found its goal: Alvarez was found in the penalty area and executed beautifully in the top right corner. After almost 70 minutes, both places were 2-0 – and thus the fair play statistics between Poland and Mexico would decide who progressed, since the direct comparison and goal difference were the same.

And Argentina didn’t give up. First Messi failed free in front of Szczesny, then Alvarez only hit the side netting – Poland now wobbled properly!

In the final quarter of an hour, the game then rippled a bit. Poland continued to make no attempt to do anything with the ball – even have the ball. Meanwhile, Argentina managed the game, throwing in the occasional pinprick that Poland managed to defend.

For Lewandowski and Co. it was still a game on a knife edge: a goal from Argentina or in a parallel game from Mexico and Poland would be out. Czeslaw Michniewicz’s team also had to be careful not to receive yellow cards in order to stay ahead of Mexico in the fair play classification.

Poland somehow trembled through in the end – also because Argentina eventually took two gears down. While the game between Argentina and Poland had ended 2-0, injury time was still running in the parallel game.

There, Mexico had made it 3-0 at times, but the goal was withdrawn. In injury time it was actually 2-1 for Saudi Arabia, so Poland qualified for the round of 16 thanks to the goal difference. World champions France are waiting there, against whom Poland will not have the slightest chance with the performance shown today.

Everything about the World Cup at 90min:

This article was originally published on as Argentina easily beats Poland and wins the group – game report & network reactions released.


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