Argentina boss Sabella blames humid conditions at Puerto La Cruz for 0-1 loss to Venezuela
The euphoria of Argentina's opening World Cup qualifying win over Chile vanished at a stroke on Tuesday as the two-time world champions slumped to an historic 1-0 loss to Venezuela.
Floored: Argentina ace Lionel Messi and Venezuela's Oswaldo Vizcarrondo vie for the ball. Pic/AFP
Fernando Amorebieta bagged the only goal with a powerful header from a corner on the hour mark to stun Alejandro Sabella's side and send them back to square one, just when it seemed Friday's 4-1 thrashing of Chile had exorcised demons of a summer Copa America failure on home soil.
On Tuesday it was a hot and sticky Puerto La Cruz in the Venezuelan Caribbean, which saw Argentina fail to kick on from last week's promising showing.
The visitors huffed and puffed but proved unable to blow the Venezuelans' house down, making Argentina's home date with Bolivia on November 11 a must-win affair.
Sabella said afterwards that the sticky conditions had been a factor. "Maybe the heat was a factor, the humidity, the fact we played Friday and then had to travel. But we have to take things game by game and look at the things we need to work on -- the qualifiers are a long road," he said.