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Argentina 1-1 Chile: Vargas rebound cancel out Messi stunning opener as spoils are shared

The opening match of Group A finishes all square as Argentina and Chile play out a 1-1 draw in Rio de Janeiro.

Lionel Messi’s wonderful free-kick gave La Albiceleste a half-time lead, in the opener against Chile – but was unable to stop his team from dropping two points.

As Eduardo Vargas levelled after the break to ensure a share of the spoils.

Argentina talisman Messi is still yet to win his first international trophy with his country, and set about kickstarting their quest to end the drought with a jaw-dropping effort from a set piece.

The effort chalked up his 73rd goal for Argentina – and also saw him overtake all-time great Gabriel Bautistuta to become the top scorer for his nation in competitive matches, with a tally of 39.

His goal was later overshadowed, however, with Chile rallying and taking a hard-earned point.

They were awarded a penalty on 57 minutes when Nicolas Tagliafico was penalised for leaving his foot in on Arturo Vidal inside the box.

The midfielder had looked to latch on to a rebound following a save from Emiliano Martinez, but as he made contact with the ball, full back Tagliafico was found guilty of clumsily bundling him over.

After the decision was ratified by a check using the pitchside VAR monitor, Vidal drove the spot-kick towards goal, only for Martinez to spring into action and tip onto the crossbar.

But unluckily for him, and Argentina, Eduardo Vargas reacted quickest to the loose ball to power in with his head.

Both nations play their second group game later in the week. Argentina face Uruguay while Chile take on Bolivia.

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