Angel Correa's Goal Leads Argentina to Win vs. Morocco in 2019 Friendly

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 26, 2019

Morocco's Manuel da Costa (L) fights for the ball with Argentina's Guido Rodriguez during the friendly football match between Morocco and Argentina in Tangiers on March 26, 2019. (Photo by FADEL SENNA / AFP)        (Photo credit should read FADEL SENNA/AFP/Getty Images)
FADEL SENNA/Getty Images

Argentina edged out Morocco 1-0 in their friendly at the Stade Ibn Batouta in Tangier on Tuesday.

A much-changed Albiceleste side, which contained few recognisable stars outside of Paulo Dybala and Leandro Paredes, struggled to get going in highly windy conditions in north Africa.

There were four yellow cards and 28 fouls in a tempestuous first half of little quality.

Atlas Lions' front man Khalid Boutaib came closest to scoring but shot straight at Esteban Andrada, while Nikola Maksimovic's free-kick almost deflected in off Lautaro Martinez.

There was little improvement in the second half, though Argentina were perhaps fortunate not to concede a penalty when Walter Kannemann fouled M'barek Boussoufa on the edge of the area.

Argentina eventually grabbed the winner through substitute Angel Correa in the 83rd minute after he burst past Achraf Hakimi.


Dybala Isn't Ready to Inherit Messi's Throne

The windy conditions made it difficult for anyone to shine on Tuesday, as did the constant fouling, which prevented either side from building any sort of rhythm or fluency.

Still, as the best player in their starting XI, Argentina will have been hoping to see more from Dybala.

The Juventus attacker cut an anonymous figure throughout on Tuesday, failing to inject any spark of quality into a contest that was sorely lacking.

As Goal's Dan Edwards noted, his performance mirrored his recent showings for his club side:

Daniel Edwards 💚 @DanEdwardsGoal

I want Argentina's players to play like they do for their clubs, Lionel Scaloni said prior to the Morocco match. Sadly, Paulo Dybala is doing just that.

Dybala has struggled with the Bianconeri for much of the season and has scored just nine times, having netted a career-best 26 goals in the last campaign.

He offered no attacking threat against Morocco and was often guilty of being far too static in his movement.

Edwards was unimpressed:

Daniel Edwards 💚 @DanEdwardsGoal

Dybala played the entire 80 minutes he was on the pitch like a racehorse doped with ketamine. What the hell is wrong with him, last few Juventus games suggest it isn't exactly a one-off blip?

The 25-year-old should be one of the stars of this team and the leading candidate to take Argentina forward when talisman Lionel Messi, 31, hangs up his boots.

However, he has just one international goal to his name, and Tuesday's performance gave little indication that will change in the near future.


What's Next?

Argentina aren't slated to play again until their opening Copa America clash with Colombia on June 15. Morocco await the April 12 draw for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, which will be played in June.