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Spain save Czech Republic draw in Nations League, Lionel Messi scores five as Argentina beat Estonia |  Soccer News


Spain needed a last-minute strike from Inigo Martinez to salvage a 2-2 Nations League draw with the Czech Republic, while Lionel Messi scored all five as Argentina beat the Estonia 5-0 in a friendly.

The Czechs took an early lead in the Group A2 clash with Spain after Sparta Prague striker Jakub Pesek scored from close range in the fourth minute from a pass from Jan Kuchta who got behind the defense of visitors.

Spain equalized at half-time when midfielder Gavi beat Czech goalkeeper Tomas Vaclik with a shot to the far post.

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Jan Kuchta celebrates after scoring for the Czech Republic

However, the Czechs retook the lead in the 66th minute when Kuchta lobbed goalkeeper Unai Simon just outside the box after being sent through on goal alone.

Spain scored in the 90th minute to break the hearts of home fans in Prague when Martinez connected with a Marco Asensio cross and his header just went over the line.

Spain save Czech Republic draw in Nations League, Lionel Messi scores five as Argentina beat Estonia |  Soccer News
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Kuchta scores against Spain

Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice Portugal swept to an emphatic 4-0 win over Swiss during their UEFA Nations League clash at the Estadio Jose Alvalade in Lisbon.

William Carvalho and Joao Cancelo were also on the scoresheet as the hosts squandered numerous chances to inflict more humiliation on the visitors, who suffered their biggest defeat since losing to Germany by the same scoreline in 2008.

Spain save Czech Republic draw in Nations League, Lionel Messi scores five as Argentina beat Estonia |  Soccer News
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Cristiano Ronaldo was among Portugal’s goals

Portugal have four points from their first two Group A2 matches and edge second-placed Czech Republic on goal difference. Switzerland are at zero after back-to-back defeats and are now winless in their last four meetings since qualifying for the World Cup in Qatar.

Carvalho opened the scoring when he reacted fastest to the loose ball when Ronaldo’s free-kick was parried, before the latter netted a quick brace to take his international goalscoring record to 117.

Ronaldo should have scored a hat-trick when he squandered two excellent chances before half-time, the first a barely credible miss from six yards out, but it was left to Cancelo to score the fourth for Portugal in the second half.

Spain save Czech Republic draw in Nations League, Lionel Messi scores five as Argentina beat Estonia |  Soccer News
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Ronaldo celebrates his first goal

Portugal host the Czech Republic in their next match on Thursday, while Switzerland host Spain in Geneva the same evening.

Meanwhile, Erling Haaland scored in each half to take his international tally to 18 from 19 games as Norway to beat Sweden 2-1 top of Nations League Group B4 after wins in their first two games.

The visitors took the lead when Morten Thorsby was awarded a soft penalty by referee Anthony Taylor for a casual contact in the box by Emil Krafth. Haaland, who scored the winning goal against Serbia in their opener, struck Robin Olsen’s free-kick from the right in the 20th minute.

Sweden’s only attempts on target in the first 45 minutes came from a pair of free kicks from Emil Forsberg just before the break, but despite a series of decent attacks and set pieces early in the second half , they failed to equalise. .

Haaland made them pay in the 69th minute, latching onto a loose ball and leaping powerfully into the box before firing a right-footed low shot over Olsen and into the net to make it 2-0.

Spain save Czech Republic draw in Nations League, Lionel Messi scores five as Argentina beat Estonia |  Soccer News
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Norway’s Erling Haaland celebrates after scoring

The striker missed a great opportunity to complete his hat-trick three minutes later and was replaced by Joshua King soon after.

Anthony Elanga scored a stoppage time goal for the Swedes that proved too little, too late as Norway held on to win.

The Norwegians top the group with six points ahead of their first home game against Slovenia on Thursday, while the Swedes host the second Serbiawho beat the Slovenians 4-1.

SloveniaPetar Stojanovic’s canceled out Aleksandar Mitrovic’s opener, but second-half goals from Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Luka Jovic and Nemanja Radonjic completed a comfortable win for the Serbs.

North IrelandPortugal’s winless run in the competition was extended to 12 games as they were held to a frustrating 0-0 draw in Cyprus.

Ian Baraclough’s side, who lost 1-0 to Greece at Windsor Park last week in their Group C2 opener, sit third in the table after two matches.

Greece followed last week’s opening win with another 1-0 success on the road as Anastasios Bakasetas scored the only goal for Kosovo.

Georgia two out of two wins as they won 5-2 in Bulgariagroup C4 rivals North Macedonia recorded its first victory, 2-0 in Gibraltarand Malta kicked off their D2 group campaign successfully by beating San Marino 2-0.

Messi catches five as Argentina beat Estonia

Spain save Czech Republic draw in Nations League, Lionel Messi scores five as Argentina beat Estonia |  Soccer News
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Argentina’s Lionel Messi celebrates his fourth goal

Lionel Messi celebrated Argentina’s captaincy to Finalissima glory last Wednesday by scoring all five goals – and becoming the fourth-highest goalscorer in men’s international football – as Argentina ended their European tour with a thrashing 5 -0 against Estonia in Spain.

The seven-time Ballon D’Or winner opened the scoring from the spot after eight minutes and doubled Argentina’s advantage from a tight angle moments before the break.

It took him just two minutes of the second half to add a third, which put him level with Hungarian legend Ferenc Puskas on 84 goals for his country.

He wasn’t done there, however, and rose to No. 4 in the all-time top scorer charts as he played after several Estonian players pulled out for what looked like a foul on an Argentinian midfielder, before rounding goalkeeper Matvei Igonen and heading home.

He added a fifth for only the second time in his career for club or country when he hung on the rebound from Paulo Dybala’s effort to complete a typically outstanding solo performance.

And after?

World Cup holders France will face a rematch of their 2018 final victory over Croatia in Split on Monday as the highlight of the day’s seven games; kick off 7:45 p.m.

Elsewhere, Euro 2020 semi-finalists Denmark visit Ralf Rangnick’s Austria and are looking to build on their impressive 2-1 win over France in their Nations League opener.




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