WC Qual - CONMEBOL
September 11, 2012
Peru 1-1 Argentina
Argentina held on to top spot in the World Cup South American Qualifying Zone with an uninspiring 1-1 draw at Peru.
Alejandro Sabella's men were way below their best and they fell behind to Carlos Zambrano's opener - after Claudio Pizarro had missed from the penalty spot - before Real Madrid striker Gonzalo Higuain levelled matters.
The draw helped Argentina stay top by one point ahead of Colombia and Ecuador respectively.
Peru dominated possession throughout and they had an opportunity to make a dream start when Angel Di Maria fouled Jefferson Farfan in the box.
Pizarro stepped up but his effort produced a fine save from Argentina keeper Sergio Romero.
The two-time World Cup winners were given a reprieve but they could not take advantage and it was Peru who took a deserved lead in the 22nd minute.
Rinaldo Cruzado picked out Luis Advincula, who was allowed plenty of room to cross to Zambrano and he made no mistake.
That spurred Argentina into action and Higuain drew them level seven minutes before half-time after a flowing move involving Federico Fernandez and Ezequiel Lavezzi.
The visitors came firing out of the traps after the interval as Lavezzi forced keeper Raul Fernandez to save at his near post while at the other end, Andre Carrillo's long-range strike struck a post.
Argentina finished the match strongly with Higuain forcing Fernandez into action from distance while Marcos Rojo headed over from a corner.
Peru were worthy of at least a share of the spoils although they remain third from bottom in the standings.