MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay, November 17 – Argentina qualified for next year’s World Cup in Qatar, one point in their 0-0 draw with Brazil on Tuesday was enough after defeats to Chile and Uruguay.
The reigning Copa America champions entered the game against their rivals knowing that a win might not be enough to secure their ticket, but a draw could be.
And Chile’s 2-0 home loss to Ecuador, coupled with Uruguay’s 3-0 loss to Bolivia, helped Argentina advance.
This ends a great year for Argentina and Lionel Messi, who won their 15th Copa America in July with a 1-0 final victory over Brazil at the iconic Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro.
“If we analyze this year, it was beautiful. What we experienced with the fans… everything was complete, ”said Rodrigo De Paul.
Argentina welcomed six-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi to his starting lineup while star striker Neymar missed the game against Brazil.
But Messi was unable to inspire his side in a game of few chances, against opponents who booked their ticket to Qatar on Thursday with a 1-0 victory over Colombia.
Brazil remain at the top of the qualifying group, six points ahead of Argentina, who extended their unbeaten run to 27 matches.
“We’ve played really well in every game this year. We have already qualified for the World Cup, ”said Brazilian Fred.
“Today we failed in the final third, but the most important thing is to come away scoreless.”
Brazil lost a two-on-two break when Fred’s pass forced Vinicius Junior to rule out, and his first touch ran out of play.
It summed up a match that never caught fire and in which almost nothing came out on either side.
Quick Matheus Cunha tried to score the qualifying campaign goal as he tried to chip away Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez from inside his half, but his effort went over the crossbar.
Argentina came to life in the final five minutes of half-time as De Paul landed the hosts’ first shot on target, although Alisson Becker handled it comfortably in Brazil’s goal.
Brazil had only managed one shot on target in the first 45 minutes, and it was a weak effort from Fred.
The main topic of discussion was how Argentina center-back Nicolas Otamendi escaped a red card for nudging Raphinha in the face, causing blood to flow.
According to reports, Raphinha needed five stitches at halftime.
Fred, the much-maligned Manchester United midfielder, almost became the unlikely hero of the second half when he came closest to the stalemate, cutting off the top of the bar with Martinez defeated.
But there wasn’t much else to get excited about, with none of the goalkeepers having been seriously tested.
Even a late effort from Messi after passing Fred was straight to Alisson.
– Bolivia, Peru get closer –
Two-time world champion Uruguay’s hopes suffered a heavy blow when they were beaten against Bolivia at 10, leaving them seventh in the 10-team group, albeit just one point behind last place. automatic qualification.
A brace from Juan Carlos Arce and another from Marcelo Martins gave Bolivia a comfortable victory that keeps their qualifying hopes alive.
Even the dismissal of Carmelo Algaranaz 15 minutes from time, 2-0, did not spoil the Bolivian evening.
A third win in four matches left Bolivia just two points behind fourth-placed Colombia.
Colombia are hanging on by their fingernails in last qualifying place after a fifth straight scoreless game, four of which ended in a 0-0.
Colombia failed to impose a home winner against Paraguay, although the visitors had Adrian Cubas sent off with six minutes remaining.
Peru’s second straight win, 2-1 over the world’s lowest Venezuela, placed them tied on points with Colombia for the intercontinental play-offs.
Goals from Gianluca Lapadula and Christian Cueva from either side of a Darwin Machis strike for Venezuela gave Peru a crucial victory.
Goals from Pervis Estupinan and Moises Caicedo condemned Chile to defeat and moved them from fourth to sixth place.
They also sent off Arturo Vidal in the first half for a high boot.
Ecuador is in third place, six points ahead of Peru, fifth with just four games to go.