The Lionel Messi-led Argentina saw off their old rivals Brazil, winning 1-0 through a Gabriel Mercado goal just before the interval in front of more than 95,000 fans at the MCG in a quality friendly on Friday night.
The build-up to this game suggested it would be an event, an elaborate two hours of sporting themed theatre rather than a game with any wider significance. But can a game between these two South American powerhouses ever be a friendly affair?
No, this wasn’t a do-or-die meeting, and no-one was looking to get injured to make a point. But there was commitment and skin in the game, sufficient desire not to play second fiddle, to make it compelling.
To many of the 95,569 in attendance, those excited children straining to get a glimpse of some of the biggest names in world sport, it probably wouldn’t have mattered whatever the motives of either side were.