News Matches

Poland v Argentina Live Commentary, 30/11/2022

FT
0 - 2
POL
ARG
A. Mac Allister (46)
J. Álvarez (67)
Stadium 974

Commentary

Argentina will face Australia in the round of 16, then, while Poland will face France. They'll need to play much better to stand a chance of beating them. That's all for now. Thanks for joining us, goodbye!
Argentina finish as winners of Group C after an impressive comeback from their opening defeat. They attempted 23 shots in this game and were dominant throughout. Mexico have ended up beating the Saudis 2-1, which isn't enough for them. Poland finish second on goal difference and squeak through to the knockout stage.
It's all over at Stadium 974, and Argentina are through to the last 16! The South Americans have thoroughly dismantled Poland to do it. Mac Allister and Alvarez got the goals, but they should have had more after Messi had a penalty saved in the first half. Poland will be mightily relieved they didn't.
90' + 7' FULL-TIME: POLAND 0-2 ARGENTINA
90' + 6' Argentina pass this way and that for the last minute, toying with their nervous opponents. Eventually, the referee blows his whistle. That's it!
90' + 4' De Paul floats the resulting corner into Poland's box. The Polish are delighted to see the ball away.
90' + 2' After a long spell of possession, Argentina get bored and decide to attack again. Poland manage to force them back, until Tagliafico is suddenly through on goal! The substitute tries to chip the onrushing Szczesny, who gets a hand to the ball but not enough of one, and it's somehow cleared off the line! Goodness!
90' Poland have at least six more minutes of agony to endure. They're keeping everyone back in their own half.
88' Argentina are popping the ball around without a care in the world. Poland won't mind as long as it's not near their goal.
86' The torture's not over for Poland fans yet! Lautaro Martinez somehow drags the ball wide with only Szczesny to beat.
T. Almada
A. Mac Allister
Argentina
84' Mac Allister, who opened the scoring for Argentina, goes off to applause. Almada replaces him.
K. Piątek
G. Krychowiak
Poland
83' Poland make a change. Krychowiak goes off. Piatek comes on.
83' Argentina know their job is done. Poland look physically and mentally spent. All they can do now is try to keep things clean and not concede again.
81' Molina holds the ball up down the right. Argentina shift play left to Mac Allister, whose cross gets stopped by Glik.
G. Pezzella
E. Fernández
Argentina
79' Fernandez goes off too after a fine display. Pezzella, a centre-back, replaces him.
L. Martínez
J. Álvarez
Argentina
79' Argentina make more changes. Alvarez goes off having grabbed his goal. Lautaro Martinez takes his place up front.
G. Krychowiak
Yellow Card
Poland
78' Krychowiak is shown the yellow card for a tactical foul. Poland are still achieving very little in an attacking sense.
77' Lewandowski controls the ball only to get shrugged off it seconds later. Poland's star striker has been feeding off scraps all game.
75' Mac Allister and Alvarez's goals mean that only Brazil and Germany have had more different World Cup scorers than Argentina's 62. They're a nation with World Cup pedigree, and they're playing like it.
73' There's another scare for Poland as Alvarez reaches a cross in the box to fire wide of the right-hand post. Argentina are enjoying themselves now.
A. Jędrzejczyk
B. Bereszyński
Poland
72' Poland make a change to stem the bleeding. They need it. Bereszynski goes off. Marcin comes on.
71' Messi leaves Poland's hearts in their mouths! The Argentine captain forces a point-blank save from Szczesny. The Polish must be dreading the next 20 minutes.
69' Poland understandably look pale. As things stand, they're level with Mexico on goal difference and goals scored. They're clinging onto second due to their superior fair play record. Another Mexico or Argentina goal would simplify things.
E. Fernández
Assist
Argentina
68' Fernandez gave Alvarez the ball to his feet, and the striker did the rest. Argentina are heading for the last 16, and Poland might be heading out!
J. Álvarez
Goal
Argentina
67' GOAL! POLAND 0-2 ARGENTINA! Alvarez doubles Argentina's lead and leaves Poland in deep trouble! The Manchester City man controls Fernandez's pass and holds off his man in the box to send a stunning strike past Szczesny.
66' Argentina keep possession from the corner. Mac Allister races onto a throughball down the left. Glik comes across to put a stop to the attack.
64' Messi has Alvarez alongside him but elects to shoot instead. The ball hits a defender and goes out for an Argentina corner.
D. Szymański
K. Bielik
Poland
62' Here's that Poland change. Off goes Bielik. On comes Szymanski in attacking midfield.
61' Argentina's goalscorer Mac Allister latches onto Messi's pass into the box to sidefoot straight at Szczesny. Poland are about to make another change.
60' Argentina appear to have switched to a four-man midfield. They want that second goal to seal the three points.
N. Tagliafico
M. Acuña
Argentina
59' Acuna also makes way after an energetic hour on the pitch. Tagliafico takes his place at left-back for Argentina.
L. Paredes
Á. Di María
Argentina
59' Argentina decide to make some substitutions. Paredes replaces Di Maria first.
57' There's action in the other group game. Mexico are now 2-0 up against Saudi Arabia. One more goal from Mexico or Argentina could see Poland drop to third as things stand. Things are getting interesting!
55' Cash makes a great block to prevent Alvarez from troubling Szczesny. Argentina are still on top.
53' Messi rolls back the years by going on a wonderful run through the middle of the pitch. The diminutive maestro eventually fires wide of the left of the box.
51' Chance for Poland! Glik glances a header wide of the left-hand post from the free-kick. Skoras' follow-up shot at goal gets blocked.
M. Acuña
Yellow Card
Argentina
49' Acuna's booked for that challenge. Argentina's fans are rocking now, but their team have a free-kick to defend.
48' Acuna steams into a late tackle to hand Poland a promising free-kick.
N. Molina
Assist
Argentina
46' Molina made a great run down the right to create that crossing opportunity, and Mac Allister was in the right place to make the most of it. As things stand, Argentina are top of Group C!
A. Mac Allister
Goal
Argentina
46' GOAL! POLAND 0-1 ARGENTINA! Argentina have the lead they deserve, seconds after the restart! Mac Allister converts Molina's cross, finding the bottom left corner from the centre of the box.
46' Argentina get the second half started. They've been unlucky not to have scored yet.
J. Kamiński
P. Frankowski
Poland
46' Frankowski won't be coming back out for the second half either. Kaminski takes his place on the pitch for Poland.
M. Skóraś
K. Świderski
Poland
46' Poland wisely make two half-time changes. The anonymous Swiderski gets the hook first. Skoras replaces him.
Szczesny has become just the third goalkeeper since 1966 to save two penalties at a single World Cup, after Brad Friedel in 2002 and Poland's own Jan Tomaszewski in 1974. If Poland make it into the last 16, they'll have him to thank. They're playing dangerously at the moment. Argentina had 14 shots to their one in the first half.
A breathless first half comes to an end. Argentina have been dominant but haven't been able to break the deadlock yet, not helped by Messi's poor penalty which Szczesny easily saved. Poland's goalkeeper has been a busy man. His team-mates have created very little going forward, but they still top Group C for now. More to come!
45' + 3' HALF-TIME: POLAND 0-0 ARGENTINA
45' + 2' Messi takes charge in midfield but loses the ball to Bielik. Poland manage to get a throw-in, which is progress of sorts for them.
45' Acuna can't reach De Paul's curling cross. There'll be just three minutes of added time at the end of this first half. It's raced by.
44' Di Maria's blast down the middle is easily caught by Szczesny, who's having a busy time in the Poland net.
42' Argentina only look more motivated by that setback. Alvarez and De Paul get further saves out of Szczesny. If Poland make it to half-time unscathed, they'll be delighted.
40' Poland haven't had a shot on target so far in this game. It's been one-way traffic for Argentina. They'll have to fix that at half-time.
L. Messi
Penalty Miss
Argentina
39' Messi put decent power behind the strike but it was too close to the centre of goal. Will Argentina live to regret wasting this opportunity?
W. Szczęsny
Penalty Save
Poland
39' SZCZESNY SAVES THE PENALTY! Messi sends the penalty to the right of goal. Szczesny dives the right way and swats the kick aside with a strong right hand! Poland will feel justice has been done.
38' PENALTY FOR ARGENTINA! On second viewing, it looks like Szczesny missed the ball, which went out off Messi's chest after he'd been struck. It's a debatable decision, but Argentina will take it!
37' Hang on! The referee has been asked to go over to the pitchside monitor to look at that incident between Szczesny and Messi again. Szczesny's outstretched glove does make contact with Messi's head but it looks fairly innocuous...
36' Argentina are getting closer! Szczesny pushes Alvarez's left-footed shot away. The Poland goalkeeper gets straight back to his feet to waft away a cross, catching Messi in the process.
35' Argentine force another corner which is taken short to Messi. Fernandez sets himself outside the D and curls high and wide with his right foot.
34' Mac Allister's flick from De Paul's corner doesn't pay off. Poland are holding their own for now, but for how long under this Argentinian pressure remains to be seen.
33' Di Maria earns Argentina a corner. The Juventus winger's ball in looks like dropping in at the far post, so Szczesny tips it aside for another corner.
32' Acuna's low cross from the left gets blocked. Lewandowski tries to create something for Poland down the left channel, but he's too isolated and Argentina soon crowd him out.
30' Emiliano Martinez's hesitation to come for a high ball briefly invites the attention of Lewandowski. Argentina get away with it.
28' Argentina get a few more shots off in anger. Szczesny gets down low to keep out Alvarez with his feet. Acuna smashes a left-footed whistler wide of the right-hand post.
26' Lewandowski is ploughing a lone furrow up front for Poland at the moment. The Europeans can't get the ball to their forward talisman much at all.
25' Messi gets sold short with a wayward pass, and Poland attempt to escape their own half. De Paul clips Frankowski to stop that from happening.
24' The corner's taken short. De Paul's floated pass in the direction of Messi is cut out.
23' Di Maria's cross is too strong for De Paul. Argentina keep possession. Fernandez takes on Cash to earn the Argentines a corner.
22' Zielinski fizzes the ball towards the danger area with his left foot. Argentina are able to clear it away.
21' Zielinski whips the free-kick towards Argentina's box. It's a decent delivery, but Romero gets his head to it before another Poland player does.
20' Cash bursts down the right and gets bundled over by a combination of Alvarez and Acuna. Poland get a free-kick in a decent position.
18' De Paul makes a probing run off the ball which doesn't come to fruition. Argentina keep coming though, as Acuna nods straight into the arms of Szczesny from a tight angle.
17' Messi spots Acuna to his left and plops the ball out wide to him. The Argentina left-back checks onto his right foot in the box and fires high and wide.
15' Fernandez attempts to slip Alvarez through on goal with a sliderule pass down the middle. Szczesny has it covered.
14' Frankowski attempts to make progress down Poland's left-hand side. Molina stands his ground and wins a throw-in.
12' Di Maria drives inside and lays off to Messi, who finds De Paul. De Paul picks out Molina, whose cross towards Messi gets intercepted. It's been a fast start by Argentina.
10' Chance for Argentina! Messi shoots from the left of the box, forcing Szczesny to make a decent save at his near post. The resulting corner is inconsequential.
8' Di Maria's hopeful shot from outside the penalty area can only hit Messi in front of him. Argentina are, as you'd expect, playing as if they have a point to prove.
6' Messi tests Szczesny in Poland's goal, trying his luck with a weak drive from the edge of the box. The Polish goalkeeper is able to easily keep it out of the net.
4' Poland make their first foray into Argentina's box. Bielik makes a clean connection with the ball but his attempt at goal is blocked.
2' Argentina start on the front foot as Di Maria's run earns his team an early corner. Messi's delivery is comfortably cleared by the Polish defence.
1' After the usual pre-match pleasantries, Poland get this crunch final group game underway!
This is the third World Cup meeting between Poland and Argentina, the first since 1978 which the Argentines won 2-0 en route to winning the trophy. Will history go on to repeat itself? Let's find out!
There are four changes to Argentina from their 2-0 win over Mexico. The 21-year-old Fernandez becomes the youngest player to start a World Cup game for them since Messi in 2006. Messi makes his 22th World Cup appearance, overtaking Diego Maradona as the most capped Argentinian in World Cup history.
Poland make one change to their starting 11 from their win over Saudi Arabia. Swiderski replaces Milik in attacking midfield.
SUBS: Franco Armani, Geronimo Rulli, Juan Foyth, Nicolas Tagliafico, Gonzalo Montiel, Leandro Paredes, German Pezzella, Exequiel Palacios, Angel Correa, Thiago Almada, Papu Gomez, Guido Rodriguez, Paulo Dybala, Lautaro Martinez, Lisandro Martinez.
ARGENTINA (4-2-3-1): Emiliano Martinez, Marcos Acuna, Nicolas Otamendi, Cristian Romero, Nahuel Molina, Enzo Fernandez, Rodrigo De Paul, Alexis Mac Allister, Lionel Messi, Angel Di Maria, Julian Alvarez.
SUBS: Lukasz Skorupski, Kamil Grabara, Artur Jedrzejczyk, Mateusz Wieteska, Jan Bednarek, Arkadiusz Milik, Damian Szymanski, Kamil Grosicki, Jakub Kaminski, Szymon Zurkowski, Sebastian Szymanski, Nicola Zalewski, Krzysztof Piatek, Robert Gumny, Michal Skoras.
POLAND (4-4-2): Wojciech Szczesny, Bartosz Bereszynski, Jakub Kiwior, Kamil Glik, Matty Cash, Przemyslaw Frankowski, Grzegorz Krychowiak, Krystian Bielik, Piotr Zielinski, Robert Lewandowski, Karol Swiderski.
The Poles face a desperate Argentina, who ideally need a win to keep their World Cup hopes alive. La Albiceleste can qualify with a draw, but that will leave them at the mercy of events elsewhere. With both sides' places in the knockout stage at stake, this is going to be tense.
Group C remains in the balance as all four teams can still make it into the last 16. Poland's 2-0 victory over Saudi Arabia last time out has left them currently top of the group and well placed to qualiy from their World Cup group for the first time since 1986.
Hello and welcome to our live text commentary of this 2022 FIFA World Cup Group C match between Poland and Argentina at Stadium 974.