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L. Messi

'Leo is 99.9% of Argentina' - Messi gets high praise from team-mate after scoring in World Cup win over Australia

01:13 GMT+3 04/12/2022
LIONEL MESSI ARGENTINA
Lionel Messi was on target on his 1,000th career appearance to help fire Argentina into the quarter-finals of World Cup 2022.
  • Argentina beat Australia
  • Messi netted opener
  • Win secures quarter-final spot

WHAT HAPPENED? Argentina captain Messi put in another inspirational performance to help send his team past Australia in Qatar. The PSG star opened the scoring on his 1,000th career appearance with his first World Cup knockout goal. Messi was also named the Man of the Match as Lionel Scaloni's side ran out 2-1 winners, earning praise from his goalkeeper.

WHAT THEY SAID: "Leo is 99.9% of the team. We are the remaining percentage that we try to help him when things don't work out for him," he told Cope. "We are going step by step. We have the best in the world, but we are going to fight until the end."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: There's no doubt that Messi was key to Argentina's win but Martinez also played a crucial role. The Aston Villa goalkeeper produced a brilliant save deep into stoppage time to prevent Australia from making it 2-2 and sending the match into extra-time.

IN THREE PHOTOS:

DID YOU KNOW? Messi scored in the knockout stages of the World Cup for the first time for Argentina, with his previous eight goals in the competition all coming during the group stage. Only Gabriel Batistuta (10) has scored more World Cup goals for Argentina than Messi (9).

WHAT NEXT FOR ARGENTINA? La Albiceleste will now play the Netherlands for a place in the World Cup semi-finals.