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Argentina vs Iceland, FIFA World Cup 2018, Highlights: Iceland Hold Argentina

News18.com | June 17, 2018, 8:16 AM IST
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Latest Update: Iceland claim their first ever point at the World Cup after they held Argentina and Lionel Messi to a stunning draw. The superstar forward had a chance to finish it himself from the penalty spot but Hannes Halldorsson saved the day for Iceland.

Catch all the latest updates from the 2018 FIFA World Cup match between Argentina and Iceland in Moscow on the News18Sports Live Blog.
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Jun 16, 2018 8:24 pm (IST)

Full time: Lionel Messi and Argentina are held to a 1-1 draw by Iceland in Moscow.  

Jun 16, 2018 8:22 pm (IST)

Almost all of the Iceland team is defending the last few minutes of this game. Iceland continue to hold on as Lionel Messi fails to find the target again in a total of 9 attempts on goal today. 

Jun 16, 2018 8:19 pm (IST)

Five minutes to be added on after the 90 is done. Iceland have defended with heart and soul here in Moscow, can they keep it together for another 5 minutes for what will be a historic point! They will have Halldorsson to thank massively if that does happen. 

Jun 16, 2018 8:17 pm (IST)

Great save by Halldorsson as Pavon's shot almost found a way through to goal. Great reflex save after having caught sight of the ball late. Halldorsson has been great for Iceland today. He is commercial filmmaker, could this game give him some ideas?

Jun 16, 2018 8:15 pm (IST)

Five minutes to go in Moscow in this entertaining fixture. Iceland previously famously nullified Cristiano Ronaldo at the Euros, can the get the job done with Messi? 

Jun 16, 2018 8:11 pm (IST)

Messi once again driving in from the right but he is blocked off once again. The ball comes back to him and his shot is an inch away from the goal. This does not seem to be his day. 

Jun 16, 2018 8:09 pm (IST)

Sudden urgency from Argentina as the final ten minutes approach in the contest. Messi trying his best as he pulls the strings in attack. Iceland defense has been very alert and not over-awed at all. Messi will regret that missed penalty for sure. 

Jun 16, 2018 8:05 pm (IST)

Iceland are doing very well to block out the spaces and the gaps as the passes between the Argentine forwards are not coming off. Iceland regularly crowding the defense and blocking moves before it causes any harm. Once again a Messi pass to Aguero was cut out and one gets the sense Argentina are getting edgy with 15 minutes to go. Iceland very calmly working the ball around when they finally get it. 

Jun 16, 2018 8:03 pm (IST)

Messi gets another chance with a free-kick from a position which is in his range. But the wall stands tall again as the Argentine is denied once again. Icrland have six players defending in a line in front of the keeper.  

Jun 16, 2018 7:58 pm (IST)

After the huge penalty save, Argentina continue calm possession in the final third. Lionel Messi takes a foul just outside the box and sets for another free kick.

Jun 16, 2018 7:56 pm (IST)

That was a fantastic save by the Icelandic keeper and that is Messi's third missed penalty for Argentina. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:53 pm (IST)

Lionel Messi's penalty is saved by Hannes Halldorsson and Iceland rejoice. How big will that moment be? 

Jun 16, 2018 7:52 pm (IST)

Penalty for Argentina just beyond the hour mark. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:50 pm (IST)

Argentina are pinging in the balls into the Iceland box relentlessly and there seems to be no respite for Iceland's defense. The debutants though seem to be fine soaking it all in and clearing the lines confidently. An hour gone in the match and Iceland have stuck to their plans of crowding Argentina's attack out and are keeping the play in front of them.

Jun 16, 2018 7:46 pm (IST)

Messi once again driving through the centre, gets past the three players around him this time with some quick feet and feeds Aguero who is, surprise surprise, crowded out. Argentina looking to hold the ball and frustrate Iceland. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:42 pm (IST)

Messi is having to drop deep into midfield to pick up the ball and get things going. But even that isn't helping as Iceland continue to crowd the attackers out. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:41 pm (IST)

Iceland earn a corner and Sigurdsson floats in a dangerous ball into the Argentine box. They have spent quite some time in the opposition half trying to attack in the early stages of the second half. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:39 pm (IST)

Iceland stitch together a few passes as they get forward. Not too many moves like that for them yet today, the end result was disappointing though. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:36 pm (IST)

Messi, quite a distance far away from the penalty box and finds Aguero in a pocket of space, but the move can't progress much further as Iceland crowd them out once again. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:34 pm (IST)

After an intense first half, the second kicks off in Moscow with Argentina on the ball. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:32 pm (IST)

After the half time break, Iceland will be looking to keep Messi and Argentina tied down, and hope to nick something on the break. Argentina will hope for something completely different. The players are emerging from the tunnel slowly for the second half. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:29 pm (IST)

The legendary Diego Maradona is in the house in Moscow! 

Jun 16, 2018 7:25 pm (IST)

In the first half, Iceland have been under the mat, but they have been organised and have defended with heart against their fancied opponents. Argentina, of course have been more expansive in attack but have been quite bad defensively. Iceland not out of the game and will continue to play direct football, while Argentina need to up it. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:17 pm (IST)

Half time: Argentina and Iceland go into the break at 1-1. The Argentinians have been better as expected, but Iceland have shown they are no pushovers and will not be swept away. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:17 pm (IST)

Couple of half chances for Iceland towards the end of the first half. Sigurdsson this time guilty of dragging the shot wide of the post. Argentina defensively in shambles as Iceland are giving it a go whenever they have a chance to attack. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:15 pm (IST)

Argentina had a chance to counter with Messi on the right, but for once, shockingly, his touch let him down. Argentina have made close to five times the number of the passes made by Iceland so far. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:13 pm (IST)

Argentina win it back from Iceland and Salvio goes off on a run on the right and his cross is blocked. There were calls for a hand ball for the Iceland defender but that was not going to be given. The ref very firmly calls for a corner. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:12 pm (IST)

Now Messi takes a corner from the right wing, but it is collected comfortably by the Iceland keeper. After a while they have a chance to build something. Can they pinch something before half time? 

Jun 16, 2018 7:10 pm (IST)

Aguero, Messi and Tagliafico combine and Messi drives into the box and earns a corner. He shot from a similar position as compared to where Ronaldo won his penalty last night. 

Jun 16, 2018 7:08 pm (IST)

Long spell of possession for Argentina but the final cross back to Messi from di Maria did not reach him and was cut out. Argentina rebuild from the back. Iceland are not able to get out. 

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Argentina vs Iceland, FIFA World Cup 2018, Highlights: Iceland Hold Argentina
(image: AFP)

Preview: Lionel Messi's Argentina aim to put a shambolic World Cup build-up behind them and make a statement in their opening match against tournament debutants Iceland on Saturday. The two-time champions arrived in Russia dogged by poor form, injuries and controversy. But Messi is a man on a mission as he chases his first World Cup winner's medal and will not tolerate complacency against the minnows at Moscow's Spartak stadium. "Iceland showed they could compete with anyone at the last Euros," he said, referring to their giant-killing run at the 2016 European Championship in France. Messi was devastated by Argentina's loss to Germany in the 2014 World Cup final, with the agony compounded by back-to-back Copa America defeats to Chile in 2015 and 2016. Despite his achievements with Barcelona, the five-time world player of the year is yet to win a major international tournament and time is running out as his 31st birthday looms. He briefly retired from international football after the 2016 Copa America and has hinted he will do so permanently if the campaign in Russia ends in failure. The Group D clash pits an Argentine side that critics say is too focused on superstar Messi against a band of grafters who pride themselves on teamwork. On paper, the South Americans should have little trouble disposing of Iceland, an island nation of 330,000 that is the smallest country to ever reach the finals. But the Icelanders revel in their underdog status and showed at Euro 2016 they will not be cowed on the big stage. Spurred on by their fans' thunderous "Viking clap", they earned a 1-1 draw with Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal then famously dumped out England to reach the quarter-finals. "We kept Ronaldo quite quiet so hopefully we can do the same against Messi," said Burnley winger Johann Berg Gudmundsson. "We know we're probably going to be defending for a lot of the time and obviously he's one of the best players in the world and he can turn it on." Iceland, ranked 17 places behind Argentina at 22nd in the world, topped their group in European qualifying with comfortable wins over Croatia, Ukraine and Turkey. Argentina reserve goalkeeper Nahuel Guzman said the squad would do everything in their power to give Messi the success he craves but they are expecting a tight match against Iceland. "We must show patience and move the ball around to try and find space, and look to get in behind with speed," said Guzman, who plays for Mexican club Tigres. "It will be a very tight game in which we'll also have to control our nerves." Argentina only made it to the finals courtesy of a Messi hat-trick in their final qualifier against Ecuador. Subsequent friendlies have given cause for concern -- there was a 4-2 loss to Nigeria in November and a 6-1 humiliation by Spain in March, although Messi did not play in either match. Argentina's final warm-up against Israel in Jerusalem was cancelled after protests from Palestinians, miring the team in controversy and leaving players short of match practice. To further compound their problems, goalkeeper Sergio Romero and midfielder Manuel Lanzini both fell victim to late injuries. Accusing Argentina of over-reliance on Messi may seem unfair to a team boasting the sharp attacking talents of Sergio Aguero, Paulo Dybala and Gonzalo Higuain but it is a view coach Jorge Sampaoli himself has expressed. "He can carry the team on his shoulders," Sampaoli said of the player who scored 45 goals in 54 games for Barcelona this season. "This is going to be his team."
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