Lionel Messi scored a penalty and set up two goals for Real Madrid striker Gonzalo Higuain as Argentina brushed aside Venezuela 3-0 at home.

Argentina currently top their qualifying group after taking 23 points from their 10 games. leaving them four points ahead of Colombia. The match was largely a one-sided affair with Argentina's goalkeeper Sergio Romero hardly called into action.

Five different players found the back of the net as Colombia thrashed Bolivia 5-0. Midfielder Macnelly Torres put the hosts ahead midway through the first half. Defender Carlos Valdes, strikers Teófilo Gutiérrez and Radamel Falcao, and substitute full-back Pablo Armero completed the rout.

Falcao's goal was his sixth of the campaign. The win takes Colombia to 19 points and they look to be Argentina's main competition in the race for the top spot.

Uruguay were thwarted by a late Paraguay equaliser from substitute Edgar Benitez. Uruguay have struggled during the qualification campaign since their fine run in the last World Cup. Luis Suarez had just put his side ahead four minutes before the equaliser in what appeared to be a game winner at the time. However, Uruguay captain Diego Lugano's mistake proved costly as Benitez stole in and grabbed the equaliser, beating Fernando Muslera in goal. 

Uruguay have 13 points from 10 games, while Paraguay are still bottom of the eight-nation group with eight points.

CONMEBOL Results:

Peru 1-0 Chile

Argentina 3-0 Venezuela

Uruguay 1-1 Paraguay

Colombia 5-0 Bolivia

And in the CONCACAF region, Honduras fought back from 2-0 down to force a draw against Mexico to take them to the top of the standings with four points from two games. 

Mexico have two points from their two games ahead of the clash with USA in Mexico City on Tuesday night. Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez scored twice to put the Mexicans on top, but Carlo Costly inspired the Hondurans' fightback before Jerry Bengtson struck the equaliser with 10 minutes left on the clock.

Clint Dempsey's effort - the solitary goal of the night - saw the USA beat Costa Rica 1-0 in a match played in a heavy snow storm at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. USA now have three points from two games and are second behind Honduras.

CONCACAF Results:

Honduras 2-2 Mexico

USA 1-0 Costa Rica

Jamaica 1-1 Panama

 

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