The Socceroos left absolutely everything out on the field at the Ahmed bin Ali Stadium in a heartbreaking 2-1 defeat to Argentina.
Graham Arnold’s side pushed until the very end but came up short, as two errors gifted the Albiceleste their two goals.
Foxsports.com.au runs the rule over every Aussie’s performance in the Round of 16 clash in our Player Ratings!
‘Utter despair’ – Mat makes HORROR error | 00:36
‘Last player that deserved that’: Aussie skipper’s all-time blunder in ‘nightmare moment’
Mat Ryan – 4
The Socceroos skipper made several crucial saves throughout the game, but there was little he could do to deny Messi’s opener. He also came up big late in the game to deny Lautaro Martinez. But his nightmare blunder gifted Argentina their second goal which ultimately proved to be the difference.
Aziz Behich – 5
Had plenty of energy to start the game and made driving runs into the Argentinian half. However, his emotions got the better of him as he got into a tussle with Messi before giving away a needless foul on Papu Gomez which ultimately led to Argentina’s opener. Recovered well in the second half and almost scored with a slaloming run but was denied by a late block.
Harry Souttar – 8
A towering presence at the back once again, Souttar’s distribution was on point throughout. Perhaps could have done better for Messi’s opener having rushed out to block it with his legs wide open, but that’s with the benefit of hindsight. Was thrown up front at the end in search of a final equaliser but did seem a bit like a fish out of water.
Kye Rowles – 7
Made several major blocks early and dealt with opposition attacks early. Could have perhaps cleared the ball instead of playing Ryan into trouble for Argentina’s second, but defended well whenever Argentina burst forward on the counter late in the game.
Who else? Messi magic too good for Roos | 00:32
Milos Degenek – 6
An early booking meant Degenek was walking a disciplinary tightrope for most of the game. Didn’t get forward too often but did his job as a defender. Subbed off in 72nd minute.
Aaron Mooy – 8
How this man had the engine to play another 90 minutes with the amount of running he did is astonishing. Distributed the ball well in the first half and was the key in helping the Socceroos play out from the back. Tiredness began to kick in as the game wore on, but still got up and down for every transition.
Jackson Irvine – 7
Booked in the first half but didn’t stop him from putting in challenges. Like Mooy, he didn’t stop running all game and helped spread the ball around the park.
Keanu Baccus – 6
What a stage to make your first international start for the Socceroos. Had a hairy moment early in the first half when there were shouts for a handball from the St. Mirren midfielder, but the ball smacked off his body first. Also laid in a good challenge on Messi early to make his mark. Struggled with the ball in possession, but that’s understandable given the setting.
Riley McGree – 6.5
Started out on the left instead of Goodwin, but was given a bit of license to roam and pick up the ball. Linked up with his teammates well but couldn’t quite unlock a plucky Argentinian backline.
Mat Leckie – 6
Looked shattered after the win over Denmark and it seemed to carry over into the game against Argentina. But the Melbourne City winger never gave up and tracked back at every opportunity. Sadly just didn’t have much left in the tank and was subbed off in 72nd minute.
Mitchell Duke – 7
A human Duracell bunny, Duke chased down everything that was lumped forward in his direction. Sadly didn’t get any opportunities on goal but his defensive work was second to none.
Ajdin Hrustic – 6
Hrustic looked to make things happen when he came on in the 58th minute. Mainly operated on the right but popped up all over in search of the ball but unfortunately couldn’t make it happen.
Craig Goodwin – 6.5
Subbed on in the 58th minute. Got the Aussies back on the scoresheet when his strike flew into the face of Enzo Fernandez and into the back of the net. Sent several balls into the box late which caused plenty of havoc for Argentines.
Jamie Maclaren – 6
Came on for Duke in the 72nd minute. Had a late chance towards the end but couldn’t bring the ball down in time.
Fran Karacic – 6
Looked to get forward as much as possible which unfortunately left plenty of space behind him for Argentina to attack into.
Garang Kuol – 6.5
He could have broken the internet if he squeezed his chance in right at the death. Didn’t get involved as much he would have liked, but what a moment for a teenager.