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World Cup Qualifiers Roundup: Correa, Griezmann grab goals as Koke and Spain slip up

Several rojiblancos are pulling international duty as 2022 World Cup qualifying heats up.

Sweden v Spain - 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifier Photo by David Lidstrom/Getty Images

The qualifying matches for the 2022 FIFA World Cup kicked off this week, meaning a slew of Atletico Madrid players had a chance to play their part and help their countries qualify for Qatar next winter.

The players below have all seen time for their national teams thus far over the break. Geoffrey Kondogbia (Central African Republic) and Kieran Trippier (England) have yet to feature.


CONMEBOL

José Maria Giménez features in draw for Uruguay

Giménez occupied his normal central defense position next to former Atlético teammate Diego Godín. He won five duels, made six clearances, and made a key interception — but the Uruguayan defense was breached in a 1-1 draw despite this good individual performance.

De Paul and Correa feature as Argentina cruise past Venezuela

Rodrigo De Paul and Ángel Correa played instrumental roles in the Copa America winners’ 3-1 victory on Thursday.

De Paul attempted two shots, had a pass success rate of 93 percent, sent in seven accurate long balls and a created a big chance. He lasted 76 minutes on the pitch.

Venezuela v Argentina - FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar Qualifier Photo by Miguel Gutiérrez-Pool/Getty Images

Correa continued his impressive scoring form as he netted a 74th minute goal after coming on as a substitute in the 62nd minute. He initially pulled the ball back for Lautaro Martínez, who hit the shot sweetly first time when it came to him. Wuilker Faríñez made a good kick save to deny the first shot, but Correa was tracking the ball and tapped it in from close range.

Cunha enters late in Brazil win over Chile

Also on Thursday, Matheus Cunha made his debut for Brazil’s senior side in their narrow 1-0 win over Chile, playing the final 12 minutes.


UEFA

Koke, Llorente appear as Spain lose to Sweden

Atlético’s captain started and sent in six accurate long balls, as well as one key pass, in addition to his three recoveries. Overall, he completed 87 percent of his passes before Llorente replaced him 15 minutes from time.

Llorente, a spectator for most of the match, didn’t have a tremendous impact on the game as Spain fell to a surprising 2-1 defeat in Stockholm.

Griezmann back to scoring ways, but France draw with Bosnia & Herzegovina

France v Bosnia-Herzegovina - 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifier Photo by John Berry/Getty Images

Atlético’s deadline day acquisition celebrated his return to the club with an equalizing goal on Wednesday.

Griezmann tried to attack the corner at the near post, only to miss his header by inches. However, Edin Džeko’s clearance hit the on-loan Barcelona forward’s back, and goalkeeper Ibrahim Šehić was unable to claw the ball away in time. However, after a VAR review, it was determined the ball crossed the line, and Griezmann had his 39th goal for France.

Thomas Lemar also started the game, had a pass completion rate of 91 percent, and lost 3 duels before being subbed off at half time. The game ended 1-1.

Yannick Carrasco assists as Belgium sweep aside Estonia

Atlético’s wingback slid a 76th minute through ball to Thomas Foket, who converted the opportunity for Belgium’s final goal in a 5-2 win. Carrasco completed 91 percent of his passes, created three chances and won eight duels on his 50th appearance for Belgium.

Slovenia v Slovakia - 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifier - Group H Photo by Anze Malovrh/kolektiffimages/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

Oblak beaten in Slovenia’s 1-1 draw with Slovakia

Róbert Boženík’s 32nd minute opener in Ljubljana was cancelled out 10 minutes later when Petar Stojanović equalized, but the result leaves Slovenia three points adrift of Russia atop its qualifying group.

Savić plays full 90 minutes in Montenegro draw

Atlético’s veteran center back remains one of the first names on the team sheet when fit, and he played the whole match Wednesday as Risto Radunović’s 97th minute goal secured a point for Montenegro.

Poll

Which colchonero delivered the best World Cup qualifying performance this week?

This poll is closed

  • 39%
    Correa
    (47 votes)
  • 29%
    De Paul
    (35 votes)
  • 0%
    Koke
    (1 vote)
  • 21%
    Griezmann
    (26 votes)
  • 9%
    Carrasco
    (11 votes)
120 votes total Vote Now