Lionel Messi said Argentina’s 1-1 World Cup qualifying draw with Peru was ‘more fight than football’.
A strike just before the interval from Real Madrid’s Gonzalo Higuain levelled Carlos Zambrano’s 22nd minute opener but Messi, who was largely anonymous in the game, believed it was a point gained for Alejandro Sabella’s side.
“The pitch did not help, you could not play touch football, but that’s not an excuse,” Messi told reporters in Lima.
“It was a tight match that was more fight than football, but games of this type when you are the visitors are always like this and you must be strong.
“It was a positive result as we still lead the group and we will have to win our next game against Uruguay.”
Peru made good their pre-match promise to mark the Barcelona man out of the game, something Messi touched upon.
“It was like they planned for it, that they wanted it that way, yet we are still undefeated.
“We would have preferred to win but it was important not to lose and a draw is fine,” explained Messi.