Argentina 1-0 Switzerland
Argentina required Angel Di Maria’s extra time strike to edge Switzerland 1-0, making it to the 2014 FIFA World Cup quarter finals at Arena Corinthians, Sao Paulo. The dull encounter exploded into a dramatic show piece in extra time after ending goalless at full time.
With Messi surrounded by four or more defenders, Argentina lacked the link with the forwards in the first half until the little magician roared to life in the 78th minute. Messi danced and diddled into the area before taking a low whack that forced a save from Switzerland goalkeeper Diego Bengalio.
The Swiss who had contained the Barcelona star and four time Ballon d’or winner were eventually disappointed in the second half of extra time when Palacio won the ball in the middle of the park. Messi rolled a perfect pass amidst a very swift counter attack after dribbling a swiss defender inside the left channel to set up Di Maria, who completed with a stunning finish into the far bottom left corner. Argentina fans were sent into a frenzy as they celebrated the Messi inspired rescue in the 118th minute.
The Swiss had an extremely close opportunity to equalize in the 130th minute but Blerim Dzemali header was kept out by the woodwork as well as his rebound that went wide left. Switzerland had another free kick at the arc of the area but Shaqiri’s effort got deflected from the wall in the penalty area just before the final whistle. Argentina will meet the winner between USA and Belgium in the quarterfinals.