Watch: Messi scores left-footed stunner vs Australia as Argentina reaches quarterfinals  

Messi cut through Australia’s defence to put Argentina ahead, placing the ball to the right of goalkeeper Mat Ryan.

Lionel Messi dribbles past Australia’s Kye Rowles during the FIFA World Cup 2022 round of 16 match at Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium, Doha, on December 3, 2022.

Lionel Messi dribbles past Australia’s Kye Rowles during the FIFA World Cup 2022 round of 16 match at Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium, Doha, on December 3, 2022. | Photo Credit: Getty Images

Messi cut through Australia’s defence to put Argentina ahead, placing the ball to the right of goalkeeper Mat Ryan.

Lionel Messi played his 1,000th match against Australia, and he made the moment count by scoring Argentina’s first goal in a 2-1 win over the Aussies on Saturday.

Messi opened the scoring for Argentina in the 35th minute. In his first attempt, Australia defender Harry Souttar managed to block the shot, but Nicolas Otamendi grabbed the ball and set up Messi in the area. The PSG star cut through Australia’s defence to put Argentina ahead, placing the ball to the right of Mat Ryan.

This was Messi’s third goal in the tournament, getting him past Argentine legend Diego Maradona in World Cup goals. Messi has scored in every World Cup match, except in the game against Poland, where he missed a penalty.

Julian Alvarez scored the other in the 57th minute after some calamitous Australian defending, before Enzo Fernandez’s 77th-minute own goal set up an unexpectedly nervy finale.

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