Argentina needed a spectacular late strike from substitute Sergio Aguero to get a point out of their opening match against little-fancied Bolivia in La Plata on July 1.
With the temperature dipping below zero on Friday evening Argentina went in to this match expecting to easily overturn Bolivia in La Plata. But, after a spectacular opening ceremony to Copa America 2011, it seemed like the Argentine players were still dazzled by what they had seen prior to kick off and looked unprepared for the tight pressing game of the Bolivians, who always looked to have an outlet upfront through their centre forward Martins.
Excellent work from Ever Banega and several probing Lionel Messi dribbles failed to puncture the Bolivian backline, and it was Bolivia who took a deserved lead through an own goal by the Argentine defence reminiscent of some of the defensive English howlers of the past couple of years.
Bolivia almost went 2-0 up as Martins went one-on-one with the Argentine keeper, but Sergio Romero just managed to get a finger to the ball as Martins sidestepped him. As the ball fell back to Martins he was only able to hit an ineffectual shot at the keeper. Soon afterwards Argentina took off the disappointing Napoli striker Lavezzi and replaced him with Sergio Aguero.
With time running out for Argentina, Aguero hit a spectacular half volley into the roof of the net to save a point for the hosts.
Copa America 2011
A blog from the 2011 Copa America and road trip around Argentina.