Ecuador 1-3 Argentina: Messianic Messi to the rescue with hat-trick!


Lionel Messi came to Argentina's rescue after an early scare to score a hat-trick, earning his country a 3-1 win to book their place in the 2018 World Cup. Romario Ibarra gave Ecuador the lead just after 40 seconds, and with failure to qualify for Russia 2018 staring down at Argentina they responded quickly when Messi equalised on 11 minutes. Messi added a second goal on 20 minutes, and saved the best for the 62nd minute when he dribbled past two players to lob the ball over the Ecuador keeper. This was Argentina's first away win against Ecuador since 2001 as they finished third in the CONMEBOL group.

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