Exciting and dramatic scenes coloring the final round of World Cup 2018 qualifiers as Argentina finally got out of their slump and advanced to Russia thanks to magical performance from Lionel Messi.
Needing a win to ensure their place for the upcoming World Cup, Albiceleste found themselves trailing after just one minute of play as Ecuador got in front through Romario Ibarra Mina’s effort.
However, that desperate situation seemingly pushed the two time world champions up as they were able to bounce back with Messi showcasing his magic scoring a hat-trick to turn things around for his nation.
The Barcelona star netted two goals during the first 45 minutes, before completing his hat-trick on 62 minutes, triggering euphoric reaction from his teammates as they eventually overcome home team, Ecuador 3-1.
A happy day for Argentina indeed, but it was the opposite for United States as their attempt of continuing their regular World Cup participation ended this time around following their 2-1 defeat from Trinidad & Tobago.
Trinidad went on a sparkling start on that game as they went 2-0 up in the first half thanks an own goal from Omar Gonzales and Alvin Jones’ effort.
Christian Pulisic temporarily gave that glimmer of hope for US, but until the final whistle was blown, Bruce Arena’s men failed to get more goals and found themselves crashing out of world cup qualifier.