Argentina's National Team beat Venezuela 3-1, scored three important points for the qualification to the Qatar 2022 World Cup and enjoyed Lionel Messi's talent once again. In the first half, the number 10 was the victim of a tremendous kick by Luis Adrían Martínez, a Venezuelan defender who was shown the red card after the VAR alerted the main referee to the seriousness of the infraction.
In the 27th minute, Messi hooked backwards near the Venezuelan midfield and Luis Adrián Martínez, who had entered three minutes earlier, went with an iron straight to the captain's left leg. The play continued because there was danger in favor of Argentina (Lautaro Martinez defined with difficulty and the ball went out near a post), but when the game was stopped, the teammates of the Paris Saint-Germain attacker went to protest to the Uruguayan referee Leodan Gonzalez, who cautioned the defender.
The second half started in the same way as the first, Argentina was looking for a goal and Venezuela was retreating to have a chance on the counter. Gonzalez and Soteldo were the dangerous men for the locals, but they were far away from a testimonial Emiliano Martinez. Messi, for his part, was looking for the goal in every possible way, but he was not accurate in front of goal. Scaloni noticed fatigue in some of his players and gave half an hour of the match to Correa, who had a great start with Atlético de Madrid Ángel, and Joaquín with Inter.
Soteldo was Venezuela's danger. The Toronto's young player hit the half back and after a touch on Pezzella, it almost went into the right corner of Martinez. Venezuela wanted and wanted, with more soul than soccer. But the Argentinean coach made some good changes that had an effect: first, 'Tucu' Correa after a great play by Lautaro and Messi; then Angel Correa after a great shot by Lautaro Martinez. Three to zero in Caracas and that was that. Argentina closed the match as a compact and reliable team.
Scaloni continued with tests, gave Papu Gómez and Palacios, then Dybala. Messi kept looking for his goal but Faríñez denied him. In stoppage time, Soteldo was brought down by Gómez and the referee decided with the VAR that it was an infringement. Soteldo, in Panenka style, scored very well and made up the score.
Argentina played a comfortable match against a rival that did not demanded it at any time, and as a result did not suffer any cautions that could complicate the participation of the 10 players who came to this match with a yellow card and, if they had received another one, they would have missed next Sunday's match at 16:00 against the leader of these qualifiers, Brazil, at the Arena Corinthians stadium, in Sao Paulo.
The terrible kick to Messi that frightened Argentina and Paris
In the midst of this panorama, the only moment of anxiety experienced by the Argentine team occurred around the half-hour mark of the first half when the strong Venezuelan central defender Luis Martínez, who had entered the field five minutes earlier for the injured José Velázquez, committed a violent infringement on Lionel Messi's left calf, which led to fear harsh consequences that, however, were not such.