Fri, 01 Dec 2023

Araujo, Nunez on target as Uruguay beat Argentina

Xinhua
17 Nov 2023, 16:30 GMT+10

BUENOS AIRES, Nov. 16 (Xinhua) -- Ronald Araujo and Darwin Nunez scored in each half as Uruguay clinched a 2-0 away win over Argentina in their FIFA World Cup qualifier here on Thursday.

Araujo gave the visitors the lead just before halftime at La Bombonera by running onto a Matias Vina cross from the left wing before smashing a first-time effort into the far corner.

Argentina dominated possession but, despite moments of brilliance from captain Lionel Messi, they failed to break down Uruguay's compact back four.

Inter Milan striker Lautaro Martinez, who substituted Alexis Mac Allister at halftime, went close to equalizing with a glancing header that was tipped away by Sergio Rochet following Angel Di Maria's corner.

But the Celeste put the result beyond doubt when Nunez sent a cool finish past Emiliano Martinez after Nicolas de la Cruz's through ball.

The result ended the reigning world champions' 14-game unbeaten run and reduced their lead over second-placed Uruguay to two points in the 10-team South American qualifying group.

Meanwhile, Liverpool forward Luis Diaz scored two second-half goals as Colombia recovered from a goal down to secure a 2-1 home victory over Brazil in Barranquilla.

Brazil went ahead in the fourth minute at Estadio Metropolitano when Gabriel Martinelli combined with Vinicius Junior before lashing a first-time effort into the far corner.

Colombia grew in confidence after halftime and Diaz had a dangerous shot saved by his Liverpool teammate Alisson after clever work from Luis Sinisterra.

But Alisson was helpless two minutes later as Diaz latched onto Cristian Borja's cross to head home at the far post.

The Cafeteros continued to push forward in waves and Diaz put them ahead in the 79th minute when he rose above a static Emerson Royal to crash a header past Alisson following James Rodriguez's sumptuous cross.

The result leaves Colombia third in the group with nine points from five outings, three points behind Argentina.

Brazil, who have now gone three matches without a victory for the first time since 2019, are fifth with seven points.

In other qualifiers on Thursday, Bolivia won 2-0 at home to Peru, Venezuela were held to a goalless home draw by Ecuador, and Paraguay drew 0-0 with Chile in Santiago.

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