Messi misses from the spot as Argentina are held by tiny Iceland

Sampaoli denies underestimating Iceland after naming XI

Messi tried his luck from outside the area soon afterwards, his curling strike held by Halldorsson - but, out of the blue, Iceland were level after 23 minutes, Alfreo Finnbogason stabbing home amid defensive chaos. The Iceland goalkeeper dived to his right and got two hands behind the ball. Will coach Jorge Sampaoli now take Messi off penalty duties after his third miss for Argentina?

Get Argentina vs Iceland live stream coverage both online and free TV info as well as complete matches schedule, fixtures, score updates.

Sergio Aguero's emphatic finish gave Argentina the lead in the 19th minute, but that was cancelled out by Alfred Finnbogason just four minutes later.

Iceland have games against Nigeria and Croatia to come in Group D. It would take a fearless man to bet against them qualifying for the knockout stages.

Referee Bakary Gassama consulted with the VAR (video assistant referee) system before awarding the penalty but Cueva, whose nickname is "Aladdin", sent the spot kick on a magic carpet ride high over the bar.

In the second half, Ever Banega soon replaced Lucas Biglia, and Argentina started to exert more pressure on their resolute opponents, and Messi needed to come deep for the ball less often than he had in the first 45, and his involvement was nearly decisive right away.

France needed the help of the first World Cup penalty awarded after a video review and a deflected Paul Pogba goal to get their campaign underway with a 2-1 win over Australia in Russian Federation.

About Messi, the coach said: "To evaluate and characterize Lionel Messi's work is hard because it was an uncomfortable match for him".

Iceland played its debut on soccer's biggest stage like it belonged alongside the 2014 runners-up.

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However, against the run of play in the 23rd minute, Iceland pushed forward through Birkir Bjarnason and Aron Gunnarsson.

Despite early domination, Argentina were lucky not to concede in the 10th minute.

Then you had Messi, who spent the entirety of Saturday's 1-1 draw with Iceland trying to burrow his way past the opponent's tough defence. The forward executed a classy spin move to create his chance when a miscued shot by Marcos Rojo arrived at his feet near the penalty spot.

As the end approached, Halldorsson capped a man-of-the-match display with a smart stop from a Cristian Pavon cross that was headed for the far corner. But his faultless handling and excellent shot-stopping was deserving of the accolade.

"I looked at a lot of penalties by Messi and I also watched penalties I have faced so I could see how I looked to penalty-takers".

Messi has now missed four of the last seven penalties that he has taken for Argentina and Barcelona.

"Maybe we needed to be more creative in the first half".

Group D's other game between Nigeria and Croatia is to be played later on Saturday.

Iceland, which is playing its first World Cup, did receive the first blow when the mighty Argentinian side delivered their first goal but equalled it quickly and left fans rooting for the underdogs.

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