Full-time Argentina 0-3 Croatia OH MY! Nightmarish defending! Rebic chases a backpass for Caballero who tries to chip a pass over the Croatian winger to his defender but his attempted pass is tame and falls for Rebic who acrobatically volleys it home first time. Caballero has been poor throughout the game and did commit errors in the first game as well.
Croatia survive!!! Argentina finally produce a response. Perez plays Higuain through who reaches the byline and cuts a pass back to Meza whose shot is parried by the keeper and just before Messi pounced on it, Rakitic kicked it out. Drastic defending.
Paulo Dybala comes on. Dybala, Messi and Higuain playing together in Argentina’s hour of need! Can they turn this around?The stars failed to show up in time of need.
Tempers flaring! Messi is fouled as he tries to wriggle away from his marker. The Barcelona forward shows his frustration with an angry gesture and almost hits out at him. Could’ve got a yellow card there.
MY WORD! Where did that come from? Croatia venture forward on a counter and the danger seems to have passed with Modric on the ball with defenders in front of him. The Real Madrid man does brilliantly to work some space from 25 yards out and unleashes a terrific drive which nestled in the bottom corner.
What a fitting goal to win a game. Argentina on the brink!
Croatia deal with the set piece, and romp up the other end. Rakitic blazes down the middle. His shot is parried brilliantly by Caballero, but the ball breaks to Kovacic on the left. Kovacic simply rolls the ball back to Rakitic, who slams the ball into the bottom left. This is now a humiliation for the two-time winners and 2014 finalists.
It’s three! And it’s a party in Croatia! Argentina has been ripped apart. Another piece of counter. Another piece of abysmal defending. A shot on a counter is parried by Caballero, only out as far as Kovacic who has all the time in the world with the Argentine defender standing still waiting for the offside flag. Kovacic calmly squares it for Rakitic who passes the ball into the back of the net. Embarrassing for the South American giants this.
Full-time and Croatia qualify for the Round of 16. Argentina are in big trouble now. They will desperately hope that Iceland don’t win against Nigeria tomorrow. If they do, Argentina’s hopes will be left hanging by a thread. It was a stunning second-half performance by the Croats. Also, the Argentine defence has been nothing but calamitous.