Lionel Messi led Argentina to a 1-0 victory over Ecuador in their opening match of the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers. Messi, at 36, showcased his skill with a free-kick goal in the 78th minute. Argentina dominated possession and completed twice as many passes as Ecuador. Messi emphasized the need for continued improvement despite their world champion status. This match marked Argentina’s first competitive game since winning the World Cup in Qatar last December.
Messi, with 104 goals in 176 international appearances, expressed determination to qualify for the next World Cup. Argentina’s next match will be against Bolivia at high altitude in La Paz, while Ecuador will face Uruguay in Quito. In other South American qualifiers, Colombia won 1-0 against Venezuela, and Paraguay played to a goalless draw against Peru.
Source – CGTN