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A Monumental effort
by Paul Kennedy, September 8th, 2010 12:08AM

TAGS:  argentina, spain, video


[ARGENTINA-SPAIN] Tuesday's Argentina-Spain match in Buenos Aires lived up to its billing and then some. Argentina won, 4-1, in a game played at El Monumental as part of its bicentennial celebrations, prompting interim coach Sergio Batista to say the Albiceleste could have just as easily the World Cup as Spain. But the Spanish coach Vicente Del Bosque was hardly dismayed by the performance of the World Cup champions. They suffered their worst loss in a decade but not before hitting the woodwork three times. For the video highlights ...

Lionel Messi put Argentina ahead in the 10th minute when he lobbed Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina from short distance, and Gonzalo Higuain made it 2-0 three minutes later when he rounded Reina and scored into the empty net.

Reina was entirely to blame on the third goal scored by Carlos Tevez in the 34th minute when he slipped trying to clear the ball and Tevez stroked it into the goal.

Spain had shots hit the woodwork in the 28th, 41st and 75th minutes before Fernando Llorente scored in the 84th.

Sergio Aguero's goal in stoppage time completed a brilliant show by the Argentines.

Batista is all but assured of having his interim tag removed when the Argentine federation meets to pick a successor to Diego Maradona.

"We were sent packing from South Africa, but we could just as well have won the World Cup," he said. "If Spain this evening did not look like the side that won the World Cup, then the way Argentina played had a lot to do with that. We played the way we wanted to play."

Del Bosque, who started only five starters from the World Cup final against the Netherlands, tipped his hat to Argentina.

"We lost with dignity and never gave up trying," he said. "Argentina were very fast up front, they move well and it was normal that they controlled the game. They hardly left us any room to play in."


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