Marcos Rojo’s mother reacts to her son’s momentous World Cup goal for Argentina

by Leo Nieboer

Marcos Rojo‘s mother initially couldn’t believe it was her son who had volleyed Argentina into the last 16 and saved them from embarrassing elimination against Nigeria on Tuesday night.

The Argentine, who had only scored twice for his national team prior to the clash in Saint Petersburg, became his nation’s unlikely hero with less than five minutes left.

He met an out-swinging cross from Gabriel Mercado perfectly in the box with his right foot, sending a stadium bedecked in blue and white – and a whole country further beyond – into rapturous euphoria having been moments away from going out in the group stage.

And his mother, speaking after the game, revealed how she initially didn’t believe Rojo had scored given the way he hit the ball with his right foot.

The World Cup has a habit of producing things you never thought you’d see: Jesse Lingard curling one into the top corner in a 6-1 win for England, for example, is the stuff of fantasy; the idea of Paul Gascoigne crying during a game would have been likewise inconceivable; Ronaldinho chipping David Seaman from 40 yards with a free kick; Lilian Thuram running through the entire Croatia team to put France into a World Cup final. The list just goes on.

And never in a million years did I think I would see Marcos Rojo marauding into the box and, as if he was put on this earth for this one moment, perfectly volley the ball into the bottom corner, saving his country’s World Cup dream and breathing new life into their hitherto dismal campaign. There is a reason they call it the greatest show on earth.

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