A first-half goal from Guido Rodriguez gave Argentina a 1-0 win over Uruguay in a leaden Copa America clash on Friday.
Uruguay hadn’t beaten Argentina in the Copa America since 1989 and they went behind early on to Rodriguez’s header.
The Real Betis midfielder was given a starting berth for the first time since June 2019 and he justified that decision when he converted a cross from Lionel Messi after 10 minutes.
The goal gave Argentina all three points and condemned their neighbours to a losing start to their Copa America campaign.
The result in a game that was both end-to-end but lacking in real excitement at a cavernously empty stadium in Brasilia leaves Uruguay joint bottom of Group A with no points, alongside Bolivia, who have played two and lost two.
Argentina move into joint top spot with four points alongside Chile, who beat Bolivia 1-0 earlier on Friday. Paraguay have three points from one game.
Striker Edinson Cavani was back for Uruguay after missing the last two games through suspension and he produced one of the few memorable moments for his side when he was unfortunate to see a loud shout for a penalty waved away in 26 minutes.
It was indicative of Uruguay’s unhappy night that although they had slightly more of the possession they never managed a shot on goal the entire match.
At the other end, Messi caused problems for Uruguay with his mazy runs in the final third but he was frequently crowded out by Uruguayan defenders.
The result extended Argentina’s unbeaten run to 15 games since they lost in the semi-final of the last Copa America in 2019.
Their next game is against Paraguay on Monday, while Uruguay take on Chile the same day.
Brereton the hero for Chile
A goal on his full debut from English-born striker Ben Brereton gave Chile a 1-0 win over Bolivia in their Copa America clash earlier on Friday.
The Blackburn Rovers man made his debut for the country of his mother’s birth at the end of Monday’s 1-1 draw with Argentina, and he made an immediate impact on his first start in Cuiaba.
The big striker gave Chile the perfect start after 10 minutes when he got on the end of a counter attack and coolly slotted the ball home from 15 yards out.
Brereton also forced Bolivian goalkeeper Carlos Lampe into two other good saves in the first half and was a handful for the Bolivian defence before being substituted in the 83rd minute.