With Argentina needing to beat Nigeria on Tuesday in St Petersburg to have a chance of qualifying for the last 16 at Russia 2018, Lionel Messi stepped up and gave his side a 14th-minute lead.
Ever Banega’s lofted throughball was ideally placed for Messi to impressively control and hammer home a right-footed drive to put Jorge Sampaoli’s men in front. Messi’s strike became the 100th goal scored at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
Messi had failed to score in Argentina’s two previous Group D games, missing a penalty in a 1-1 draw against Iceland and proving toothless as his side were thumped 3-0 by Croatia.
The Barcelona superstar has now scored six World Cup goals, three of which have come in matches with Nigeria, against whom he last struck in the last tournament four years ago.
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Messi is lagging well behind in the race for the Golden Boot, though, which is being led by England captain Harry Kane on five goals, with Portugal skipper Cristiano Ronaldo and Belgium’s Romelu Lukaku both one behind.
The 100th goal at the 2014 World Cup was scored by Messi’s former Barcelona team-mate Neymar for Brazil, while the landmark strike in 2010 came from another of his previous club colleagues, Andres Iniesta for Spain.
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Tunisia: former President Ben Ali confirmed dead
All time, former Tunisia’s President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali has died in exile aged 83, his family says.
Ben Ali led the country for 30years and was credited with delivering stability and some economic prosperity.
But he received widespread criticism for suppressing political freedoms and for widespread corruption.
In 2011, he was forced from office following mass street protests. This triggered a wave of similar uprisings across the Arab world.
At least half a dozen countries in the region saw their president fall or conflicts break out in the wake of the former Tunisian leader’s downfall, in what became known as the Arab Spring.
Gantz refuse’s Netanyahu offer on unity government
After a vote tally showing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tied with his main rival.
Israel’s weakened Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu saw his offer on Thursday for a coalition with his strongest political rival, Gantz, swiftly rebuffed after failing to secure a governing majority in a tight election.
Netanyahu’s surprise move was an abrupt change of strategy for the right-wing leader. Its rejection could spell weeks of wrangling after Tuesday’s election, which followed an inconclusive national ballot in April.
Gantz’s centrist Blue and White party emerged from the second round of voting this year slightly ahead of Netanyahu’s Likud, but also short of enough supporters in the 120-member parliament for a ruling bloc.
Netanyahu, Israel’s longest-serving leader, said in a video clip in which he urged Gantz, the country’s former military chief, to meet him “as soon as today”, that he had pledged during the election campaign to form a right-wing, Likud-led government.
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