Croatia, on the basis of their performance, defeated Argentina, who is considered to be the strongest contender of the FIFA World title, to beat Group D in a 3-0 win on Thursday night. With this strong win, Croatia’s team has managed to make it to the pre-quarterfinals for the first time since the 1998 FIFA World Cup, while Argentina has become more difficult to reach in the next round. After two matches in Group D, Argentina is at third spot with one point.
Iceland has only one point in the table, but it has two teams to compete and play. In the match played at the Nizhniy Novgorod Stadium, Argentina tried to make a quick start. However, Croatia’s defense did not lose their patience and tried to score goals by counter attack.
Midfielder Ivan Perisic hit the goal in the fourth minute by defending Argentina’s defense, which prevented goalkeeper Wilfredo Caballero from preventing his team from initial shocks.
Messi’s magic did not come
Argentina’s legendary Forward Lionel Messi got the ball inside the box in the 12th minute. Messi could not take the ball in his possession and the ball went straight into the hands of goalkeeper Denizel Subascic. After this, there was a tough competition between the two teams. In the 30th minute, Argentine midfielder Angelo Perez got a great chance to score from inside the box. Perez got the ball in front of an empty goal, although on the easy occasion he could not give the edge to his team.
Croatia continued to goal, and in the 33rd minute, Simie Vasaljko gave the best cross within the box with the right flank, on which Mario Manjukic could not get the header from the distance of six yards.
First goal at the 53rd minute
For the Argentina, the second half started like a scary dream. In the 53rd minute, goalkeeper Caballero attempted to pass his player in the box and accidentally got the ball upside down in the air, where Rebecc scored a fine goal and gave his team a 1-0 lead.
After trailing by one goal, Argentina made efforts to score goals. In the 64th minute midfielder Maximiliano Meja and Messi got the ball of the goal line but they did not distinguish Croatia’s goalkeeper. Seeing the easy occasions to go round, coach George Vanderbo brought midfielder Paulo Debala to the ground.
Argentina’s game did not get better even after coming to Debalah on the field.
Midfielder Luca Modric, who played at the Spanish club Real Madrid, doubled Croatia’s lead in the 80th minute by taking advantage of the place found outside of the Argentine box, scoring a striking 25 yards distance.
After this, midfielder Ivan Reckittick ensured the victory of Croatia by making a goal in the injury time (91st). Argentina will play against Nigeria in their final group match on Tuesday, while Croatia will face Iceland.