Mar 27, 2018 at 8.30pm UK at ​Estadio Wanda Metropolitano
Spain
6-1
Argentina
Costa (12'), Isco (27', 52', 75'), Alcantara (55'), Aspas (74')
Isco (68')
FT(HT: 2-1)
Hernan Otamendi (39')
Tagliafico (68'), Meza (81'), Marcos Alberto Rojo (87'), David Pavon (89')

Jorge Sampaoli: Spain "slapped" Argentina in heavy defeat

Jorge Sampaoli concedes that Argentina must up their game ahead of the World Cup following a record-equalling 6-1 loss to Spain in Madrid.

Argentina manager Jorge Sampaoli has admitted that his side were 'given a slap' by Spain in their record-equalling defeat on Tuesday night.

The South American giants succumbed to a 6-1 loss at the Wanda Metropolitano in the absence of star performer Lionel Messi, who was once again struggling with a minor leg injury.

Sampaoli concedes that results of this calibre will not be acceptable a couple of months from now when Argentina get their World Cup campaign up and running.

"We have to take charge of this game, these things cannot happen to us at the World Cup," he told reporters after the match. "Spain have slapped us, we have to keep working.

"They are atypical results that can change the coach's perspective if everything is not analysed. I'll have to break the match down well and decide. You have to solve the emotional issue. We did not expect so much force from the opponent.

"Leo trained with us but still had discomfort in his leg. He felt that fatigue and that is why he didn't play. Obviously we felt his absence above everyone else's. But Leo stayed with us, he was encouraging the players. He is committed to the World Cup. He spoke at half time to the team.

"The team did an incredible first half just as we had worked on in training but 60 minutes is not enough. A game lasts 90 minutes. We need to learn from our mistakes. We didn't expect our opponents to dominate in the manner they did. We need to face the music and move on."

Argentina's only other defeats by a five-goal margin came against Czechoslovakia in the 1958 World Cup and Bolivia in World Cup qualifying eight years ago.

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Lionel Messi in action for Barcelona on January 28, 2018
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