World Cup round-up

It took a late Lionel Messi goal to seal victory and a spot in the last 16 for Argentina as they defeated Iran 1-0 in the first of Saturday’s World Cup matches.

Having endured a frustrating afternoon in Belo Horizonte, Messi popped up in stoppage time to fire home from 25 yards as they eventually overcame a stubborn Iran side.

The two-time world champions were in control for long periods in the Group F match, with Sergio Aguero prevented from breaking the deadlock courtesy of a great Alireza Haghighi save.

Argentina did not have it all their own way, however, as battling Iran almost won it themselves late on but for a brilliant save by goalkeeper Sergio Romero from Ashkan Dejagah’s header.

But it was left to Messi to settle the tie with a fantastic low finish from outside the box.

Klose celebrates his historic strike

Klose celebrates his historic strike

Meanwhile, in Group G, Miroslav Klose scored a record-equalling strike to salvage a draw for Germany in an enthralling clash with Ghana in Fortaleza.

The 36-year-old came off the bench to prod home with his first touch in the 71st minute of an exciting contest at Estadio Castelao – equalling Ronaldo’s all-time record of 15 World Cup goals.

Mario Gotze had given Germany the lead on 51 minutes, but Ghana responded with a header from Andre Ayew and took a shock lead through Asamoah Gyan before Klose’s historic strike earned them a share of the spoils.

Odemwingieslots home past Begovic

Odemwingie slots home past Begovic

Peter Odemwingie scored the only goal of the game as Nigeria recorded their first World Cup win since 1998.

The Stoke City striker slotted home past his club-mate Asmir Begovic on 29 minutes as the Super Eagles defeated Bosnia and Herzegovina 1-0 in Group F’s other match.

Nigeria rode their luck at times, with striker Edin Dzeko striking the post in injury-time, but they held firm to claim the three points and now only need a point from their final match with Argentina to join the South Americans in the knockout stages.