FIFA World Cup, Argentina and Poland storm into R16: Stats
Argentina thrashed Poland 2-0 in a Group C encounter of the FIFA World Cup. Lionel Messi got his penalty denied by Polish goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny in the first half. Alexis Mac Allister helped Argentina get the deserved breakthrough after half-time before Julian Alvarez added the second. Mexico stunned Saudi Arabia 2-1 but the effort wasn't enough as Poland got through with better goal difference.
Mexico ink these records
Mexico have never lost against Saudi Arabia in all competitions (W5 D1). Prior to this fixture, all five of their previous meetings were between 1995 and 1999. Mexico had 11 shots in the first half of this match. It's the most they have managed in the first half of a WC game since 1994 against Bulgaria (also 11).
Interesting numbers from the Mexico-Saudi Arabia fixture
Mexico ended their four-match winless streak in the tournament (D1 L3). Luis Chavez scored Mexico's first goal from a direct free kick since 1966. This was Saudi Arabia's 19th game at the WC with each of those coming against a different opponent. It's the most any nation has played in the competition without ever playing the same side more than once.
Allister, Fernandes unlock these feats for Argentina
As per Opta, Mac Allister became the 61st Argentinian player to score at the World Cup. Only Brazil (83) and Germany (77) have had more different goalscorers at the tournament (60 for Italy). Enzo Fernandez (21y 317d) became the youngest player to start a FIFA WC game for Argentina since Messi versus the Netherlands in 2006 (18y 362d).
Szczesny enters record books
As per Squawka, only three goalkeepers have saved two penalties at a single World Cup (excluding shootouts): Jan Tomaszewski (1974), Brad Friedel (2002), and Szczesny (2022). As per Opta, he is only the second goalkeeper on record (since 1966) to save a penalty at the WC after conceding it himself, after Joel Bats for France against Brazil in 1986.
Unwanted record for Messi
As per Opta, Messi has missed two of his three penalty kicks at the World Cup (excluding penalty shootouts), equalling the most by a player since at least 1966 (Asamoah Gyan missed two out of four).