Argentine captain hails youngster for scoring crucial second goal in 2-0 win over Mexico
Argentina's midfielder Enzo Fernandez (L) celebrates with Argentina's forward Lionel Messi (R) after scoring his team's second goal (Pic/AFP)
If a player of the caliber of Lionel Messi praises you, you’re most definitely special. And Argentina’s mercurial skipper and striker was all praise for the young Enzo Fernandez, 21, an attacking midfielder, who scored Argentina’s second goal in Saturday night’s must-win World Cup Group C encounter against South American rivals Mexico.
Enzo’s strike in the 87th minute from a Messi assist was his first goal for his country in only his fifth game. Earlier, Messi had scored the opener in the 64th minute, equaling legendary Argentine Diego Maradona’s record of eight goals for the Albiceleste.
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“I’m not surprised,” Messi said when asked at the post-match presser what he thought of Enzo’s effort. “I see him every day, I train with him, I have even played against him in the Champions League,” added Messi about the youngster, who represents Portuguese side Benfica.
“Enzo deserves this goal. He is spectacular, and a very important player for us, like everyone in our group. I'm very happy for him and for us because he gave us peace of mind with that 2-0 [lead],” added Messi.
Enzo, meanwhile, said it was a dream-come-true moment for him to score on his World Cup debut. “As a child, I always dreamed about playing in this shirt [Argentina jersey]. Today, I made my dream come true by scoring a goal at the World Cup. I'm very happy with today's success, this group deserves it. This victory is for all our fans, both, for those who have come this far and for those who are following us from home,” he said.