World Cup Russia 2018

Football

Fernando Gago.

Fernando Gago's incredible reaction to tearing his ACL during Argentina vs Peru

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Argentina have some work to do following Thursday night's disappointing 0-0 draw with Peru in World Cup qualifying.

Their hopes of reaching next summer's finals in Russia hang in the balance and only a win against Ecuador next Tuesday can save them.

Results elsewhere will also dictate whether or not Lionel Messi and co. qualify - or at least finish fifth in the only play-off spot.

Fourth-place Colombia take on fifth-place Peru in the final game of the group stage, so no matter what the score, if Argentina win, they're through.

But if Argentina draw, they will have to pray that Peru lose, seeing as they're on the same points (25) and have the same goal difference (+1).

Despite the situation they find themselves in, manager Jorge Sampaoli claims his players remain enthusiastic and in high spirits.

"I am very confident that if we play with the conviction with which we did it today we will be in the World Cup," he said. "Today Argentina was far superior to Peru, playing with a lot of authority.

"The situation is not comfortable. But the ranking still depends on us. We could not beat them on the scoreboard but they did in the game. We are very hopeful for everything that comes."

Sampaoli held special praise for Messi in his press conference by saying the Barcelona man created many chances throughout the game.

FBL-WC-2018-ARG-PER

Messi was nowhere near at his best, but the fact remains his teammates let him down by being so poor in front of goal. Their overall commitment has even been brought into question.

One player who can't be accused of lacking passion for his national team is Boca Juniors midfielder Fernando Gago, who produced a quite incredible reaction to rupturing his knee ligaments.

In the video below, while receiving treatment, Gago starts shouting at Argentina's physios: "I don't care. Let me play!"

Gago then gets up and asks to return to the pitch, although he couldn't continue and ended up being replaced in the 66th minute. Check it out.

GAGO TEAR HIS ACL VS PERU

Now that's what you call a winning mentality. Footballers are often criticised for feigning injury, but Gago was so desperate to help his country he was willing to play with a torn ACL.

If only Argentina's players shared the 31-year-old's grit.

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Topics:
Angel di Maria
Argentina Football
Paulo Dybala
Football
La Liga
World Cup
Angel di Maria

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