Argentina can make up for their poor performance in the first two games with three points against Qatar, who showed they are not pushovers at their first ever Copa America. Lionel Messi and co. were lucky to get a point against Paraguay as Los Guaraníes missed the penalty in the second half at 1-1 result. There is no room for errors against Qatar and if La Albiceleste fails to make it to the knockout stage, it’s going to be catastrophic for their football.
Qatar vs. Argentina
• Copa America
• Arena do Grêmio, Porto Alegre, Brazil
• Sunday 23 June
• 21:00 CET
Qatar Team News and Latest Form
Qatar’s 1-0 defeat to Colombia in their previous match means that their record against South American opponents currently in FIFA’s top-30 stands at W0, D0, L4 (GF0, GA8). The opening goal here could be vital for their chances, considering that only two of Qatar’s last ten games produced goals on both ends.
Unfortunately for the Maroons, both of their Copa America games so far have seen them allow the first goal. Qatar’s overall record vs CONMEBOL teams stands at W2, D3, L6, with the 2019 AFC Asian Cup winners allowing an average of 1.82 goals per game against South Americans.
Akram Afif scored in the final 15 minutes of play during Qatar’s previous victory over a side from another confederation (Switzerland, Nov 2018). Two of the three goals allowed by Qatar in this Copa America arrived in the opening or final 15 minutes.
Argentina Team News and Latest Form
It is a must win match for Argentina after a 1-1 draw with Paraguay, which was a hugely disappointing result. It was the second game in a row that the Argentines have lost one half to nil.
Argentina have never met an Asian team at the Copa America before, but in the last 12 years, the Albiceleste won their previous six Copa America games against guest teams, winning five of those by a 3+ goals difference.
Leo Messi’s last three Copa America goals have all arrived between the 31st and 60th minute. Argentina’s previous five wins against Copa America guest nations have been with a clean sheet. Even more impressively, five of Argentina’s last six Copa America victories over a guest team have seen them score 2+ goals in the second 45 minutes.
Qatar vs. Argentina Head to Head
These teams faced only once before and it was in a friendly tilt back in 2005 when Argentina got a convincing, 3-0 win.
Qatar vs. Argentina Betting Tip
Argentina are massive favorites at 1.22 (-450) odds, which are very low odds on the team that won only two points in their opening two matches at this tournament. However, Qatar will find it hard to contain wizard Messi. Although Albiceleste were better in the second half recently, I am backing them to take control of this clash early on and be up at halftime. Backing Argentina to win both halves in combination to score over one goal at 2.00 (+100) odds should give you a wining bet.