Football: FIFA World Cup, Round of 16
Team: Argentina vs Australia
Stadium: Ahmad bin Ali Stadium
Time: 03.12.2022, 22:00
Argentina and Australia, both of which advanced from their respective groups on thrilling final-day results, will face each other in the round of 16 on Saturday at Ahmad bin Ali Stadium. The Albiceleste overcame their shocking first loss to Saudi Arabia, while the Socceroos beat Denmark midweek to advance to this round of the World Cup tournament.Claim Your Sign-Up Bonus!
Line-ups for the Match
Argentina Starting 11 (4-3-3): Martinez, Otamendi, Martinez, Molina, Acuna, Fernandez, de Paul, Mac Allister, Alvarez, Dybala, Messi.
Australia Starting 11 (4-4-2): Ryan, Rowles, Souttar, Degenek, Behich, Mooy, Irvine, Goodwin, Leckie, Duke, McGree.
Last Five Matches: WWLWW
FIFA World Ranking: 3rd
Argentina overcame a slow start to their World Cup campaign by beating Mexico in their second Group C match and then defeating a weak Polish team on Wednesday to advance to the round of 16. Despite their star player, Lionel Messi, missing a penalty in the first half, the South American champions were rewarded for their dominance throughout the game by moving ahead of their European opponents and into first place in their group. Despite coach Lionel Scaloni making several changes to his starting lineup, the Albiceleste were able to secure their second straight 2-0 victory thanks to goals from Alexis Mac Allister (who had been promoted to the starting lineup) and Julian Alvarez (who had been brought on as a substitute) in the first few minutes following the break. The two-time defending champions are now in the quarterfinals of the World Cup for the 11th time in the last 12 finals, and they are still considered by many to be among the tournament's top contenders for the title. Even though his squad and their next opponents will be playing in identical conditions, Scaloni has expressed his displeasure at returning to action after only slightly more than two days' rest, especially following what must have been an extremely demanding path to the top of Group C. However, he is aware that the public in Argentina has high expectations and would not tolerate any explanation. Though Messi still does most of the heavy lifting in terms of creativity, the Copa America-winning coach can call on other brilliant players who have come from the edges of his squad, like Mac Allister, Alvarez, and Benfica's Enzo Fernandez.
Last Five Matches: WWLWW
FIFA World Ranking: 38th
Even though the Socceroos beat Argentina 2-0 in a matchup of two vastly different teams in last year's Tokyo Olympics, Australia has lost each of their last four matches against the South American powerhouse. But Graham Arnold's squad is riding high as they head to Al Rayyan for their destiny, which will see them compete in the World Cup quarterfinals for the first time since the legendary "golden generation" of 2006. Arnold's well-drilled squad will be an underdog to defeat Argentina and go to the quarterfinals for the first time in history after being swept aside by a fluid French team, who won the opening match 4-1. The underdog Socceroos shocked everyone by winning two of their three games and finishing second in Group D, behind defending champions France, on goal differential. They defeated Tunisia and the eventual runners-up at Euro 2022, Denmark. They triumphed 1-0 at Al Janoub Stadium thanks to a heroic defensive effort spearheaded by Harry Souttar and goalkeeper Mat Ryan and an outstanding game-winning goal from Matthew Leckie, who scored in the 60th minute to break the tie and sent his team into the round of 16.
Argentina vs Australia Prediction
Argentina's irreplaceable playmaker will undoubtedly be crucial once again as they try to advance to a quarterfinal against the Netherlands or the United States, but he will need a lot of help from the supporting cast that embarked on a 36-game unbeaten streak that ended in a loss to Saudi Arabia last week. Realism is never far away from a pragmatic Australian squad, primarily made up of players on the verge of things at their European clubs, so for all the euphoria their historic victory generated, they will be acutely aware of the step-up in class that awaits Saturday.
Prediction: Argentina will be motivated to take advantage of their re-discovered form and fluency to advance to the quarterfinals now that they have avoided playing the team currently holding the world champion title. If the Albiceleste can demonstrate their undeniable quality in the last third of the game, there should be a little mistake about who will emerge victorious. However, a tenacious Australian team may be able to hold them off for key stretches of the match. Although Di Maria's participation in this game is in question due to a thigh injury, Lionel Messi, Alvarez, and Enzo Fernandez pose a significant threat in attack for Argentina. As a result, we anticipate a high volume of attacking plays from the Argentine side and a high volume of defensive plays from the Australian side. Therefore, this match's scoring opportunities should result in corners. Even more so, we're hoping Argentina scores the game-winning goal before halftime.
Argentina vs Australia: Betting Tips
- Over 9 Corners
- Goal 1 Up to 27 Mins Yes
- Over Time Yes
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