The lead to Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, offers Croatia six factors whereas placing Argentina’s hopes of reaching the knockout stage in critical jeopardy. Argentina has only one level from their first two matches and must win their remaining sport — and obtain some exterior assist — to get out of the group stage.
Targets from Ante Rebic, Luka Modric and Ivan Rakitic did the South Individuals in after an exquisite efficiency from the Croatian facet on the evening.
Willy Caballero was known as into motion after simply 5 minutes, getting down nicely to simply push vast an Ivan Perisic low drive.
Lionel Messi practically bought on the tip of a luxurious lobbed ball into the field two minutes later, however his outstretched toe couldn’t attain it with Croatia goalkeeper Danijel Subasic caught in no-man’s land.
Argentina labored their finest likelihood of the opening quarter-hour on 13 minutes when Maximiliano Meza was discovered free in the midst of the field, however his low shot was well-blocked by a sliding Croatia defender.
Enzo Perez was unfortunate to not rating within the 30th minute when confusion within the field led to the ball rolling onto his left foot in the midst of the field, however he someway fired nicely vast of the submit with Subasic out of place.
Mario Mandzukic returned the favour three minutes later — his diving header from a decent angle badly missed the mark after he was left unmarked on the far submit.
Rebic then obtained a yellow card for an inadvertent stomp on Eduardo Salvio close to the sideline, with Jorge Sampaoli and Argentine gamers calling for a pink to be given for the harmful nature of the problem.
Rebic was at fault for losing an exquisite cross-field go from Modric simply earlier than the half. His poor first contact pressured him right into a half-hearted shot from 25 yards after being performed in behind the Argentine again line.
Gabriel Mercado obtained a yellow simply after the break for a cynical deal with to cease Rebic from breaking via the midfield.
Sergio Aguero pressured a save within the 53rd minute with a fast flip and shot from the left of the field, nevertheless it was Croatia who have been celebrating their opener seconds later after a Caballero blunder handed the lively Rebic a golden likelihood.
The Chelsea keeper’s tried scooped go over Rebic fell on to the winger, who sensationally volleyed over Caballero to provide his facet a deserved lead.
Rebic got here off with an damage quickly after and Argentina followers whistled their disapproval when Aguero made means for Gonzalo Higuain within the 64th.The Argentines, although, went shut seconds later when Meza’s shot on the close to submit was well-saved by Subasic, who was fast to show away a second try by Messi from a decent angle.
Mandzukic seemed to have bagged a second two minutes later, nevertheless it was Modric who splendidly accomplished the duty within the 80th minute — the Actual Madrid man firing residence a outstanding curling shot from exterior the field.
Rakitic then accomplished the rout in second-half stoppage time — the Barcelona man passing previous Caballero after the Argentine defence gave up on the play in their very own field.
Needing a win to maintain their slim hopes alive, Argentina will face Nigeria on Tuesday in St. Petersburg. Croatia will play Iceland in Rostov on the identical day.