Argentina shine


Ten teams kicked off what is going to be an arduous journey over the next two years, with 18 games across the continent.

Only the top four qualify, while the fifth-place country will play-off against the side placed fourth in the CONCACAF region.

Argentina, winners in 1978 and 1986 and runners up in 1930 and 1990, also picked up maximum points after recording a 2-0 victory against Chile, thanks to two superb free kicks by their midfield star, Juan Roman Riquelme.

Venezuela travelled to Ecuador and against all odds, including the high altitude of Quito, managed to come away with a 1-0 win.

The other two games ended in drab draws, as Peru and Paraguay failed to score, while five-times-winners Brazil were also held to a goalless draw by Colombia.

Heavy rains delayed Brazil’s kick off in Bogotá, and the players felt the effects of the lush pitch. Both Robinho and Kaka were marked out of the match.