An impressive Argentina turns their statistical dominance into goals with a comfortable 3-0 win at La Bombonera.
Despite looking at the superior side from the outset, it took the Albiceleste a little while to trouble Farinez, with lots of possession in midfield failing to translate into shots on target.
Nicolas Gonzalez would set things right 10 minutes from half, however, with a close-range sliding finish following a De Paul cross.
The second half followed in much a similar pattern, with the hosts forcing their opponents to chase for the majority of the action.
Di Maria’s introduction at the 70th minute would end the match as a contest. However, the PSG winger contributed a goal and an assist for Messi in just 12 minutes on the pitch.
Venezuela slumps to their fourth defeat in five matches with a poor showing in which they offered very little going forward.
The result keeps the Vinotinto bottom of the table. Argentina stays second – four behind Brazil.
ARGENTINA OPEN THE SCORING! 1-0! De Paul finds room inside the penalty area and plays a low cross towards the far post which finds its way between Makoun’s legs. Nicolas Gonzalez comes sliding through into the six-yard box and manages to turn his effort past Farinez.
DI MARIA DOUBLES THE ADVANTAGE! 2-0! It took the winger just nine minutes to come on and score, getting on the end of De Paul’s pass hit over the top of midfield before drawing the goalkeeper off his line and lobbing Farinez.
A FANTASTIC THIRD! 3-0! Two Paris Saint-Germain players link up as Di Maria takes on a defender inside the penalty area before winning space and sending a chip towards the penalty spot. Messi reads his team-mate’s intentions and stays onside to control the ball with his chest before hitting a miscued shot into the open goal.
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