A titan between the posts for his nation. The keeper stopped a string of chances early on as his side struggled to settle, ensuring that when they lifted their game it was from a clean slate.
The Olimpo defender was one of the heroes of the evening. His grizzled, bearded visage will give Higuain many sleepless nights as he tirelessly destroyed Argentina's attacking intentions
Flawless on the right, always willing to put his body on the line and was a constant nuisance for the Argentine midfield as they attempted to create.
Completely nullified the threat of a poor Zabaleta down the right hand side, and added an attacking threat of his own with some probing runs.
In just his second cap, the Athletic Bilbao man made sure his name will never be forgotten. Did not put a foot wrong in defence, and somehow got down to head in the winner that ensured a first ever victory for Venezuela over Argentina.
Captain fantastic. Arango ran the midfield for the Vinotinto, and his dead-ball ability swayed the game, not least in his perfect delivery for the goal. Only two top-quality saves from Andujar denied him a goal of his own.
The centre midfielder struggled at first to contain his illustrious opponents, but slowly fought back into contention and by the second half was enjoying the upper hand.
A dynamic, tenacious performance in the middle. Lucena played with unlimited heart, and heroically threw himself in front of Higuain's shot late on to ensure victory.
The River Plate winger was another who just got better as the game wore on, and gave Marcos Rojo a very uncomfortable evening on the right wing.
Ran some hard yards in the first period, and was rewarded later with the ball at his feet. Always dangerous, and almost scored the goal of his life after he skinned two defenders.
Largely ignored in the first half as Venezuela favoured the long ball, but got more involved after the break when their game allowed more short passing. Never stopped pressuring the Argentina defence and forcing mistakes.
Comfortably the best player on the Albiceleste side. If not for a string of big saves, the scoreline could have passed from unfortunate to humiliating. Nothing he could do for the goal.
Made a couple of important interceptions, but again was poor at set-pieces and showed nothing to justify his place in the Argentine first team.
Offered almost nothing going forward, and was guilty in defence by continually being out of position as Arango dominated the flank.
The kid's worst performance in an Argentina shirt. Could not break out of defence, and wasted several key attacking opportunities with some woeful control and crossing.
Painfully immature performance from the Porto youngster. Too many fouls were given away in key areas, and his distribution from deep was calamitous.
Ineffective, uncertain, slack, lazy – all adjectives to describe a very disappointing performance at the back from Demichelis, who was too often found wandering.
Started well, with some excellent touches in and around the box. As the game went on, though, he was starved of possession, and not equipped with the forethought and dynamism to go looking for it.
As the anchorman, needed to be much, much bigger than he was. By no means the worst player on the pitch, but the Argentine game broke down in the transition from defence to midfield and this should have been marshalled by the former captain.
Á. di María
Electric against Chile, but a burnt-out fuse on Tuesday evening. One mazy run caught the attention, but he suffered the fate of his fellow attackers in being starved of the ball after the half hour.
Isolated, pressured and, ultimately, defeated. A handful of speculative shots was all the inspirational forward mustered against a tide of tacklers, but he was not helped by his lacklustre colleagues.
Hard to believe that this was the same effervescent character who smashed three on Friday. Forlorn and overwhelmed, and forced to chase desperate long-balls to see anything of the action around him.
- R. Romo
- L. Morales
- A. Túñez
- J. Rey
- R. Feltscher
- J. Granados
- J. Guerra
- A. González
Given a few minutes at the end in place of the exhausted Gonzalez.
A short but important cameo, a ripping long-range effort forced Andujar to tip dramatically over the bar.
Came on at the death to run a few more seconds off the clock.
- S. Romero
- A. Orión
- E. Insúa
- F. Fernández
Came in after the goal, but his only contribution of note was a vicious tackle on Arango that was very fortunate to escape a card.
- N. Gaitán
- R. Álvarez
- J. Gutiérrez
- R. Braña
Finally played a part, but four minutes at the end with the game lost was not exactly what the PSG man would have wanted.
- G. Denis
Brought into the action late on but with no time to make a difference.