If Argentina do end up completing fifth in CONMEBOL qualifying, it will certainly not be the end of the globe as they would certainly most likely win a play-off against New Zealand and make it to Russian Federation anyway. That victor will also advance.
Argentina, one of the giants of world football, have not been at their dominating best in the World Cup qualifiers.
Dario Benedetto could be handed his full debut on Friday when Argentina bid to rescue their World Cup qualifying campaign against Peru.
Messi will next be in action when Argentina face Peru in a crucial World Cup qualifier on Thursday night.
As the madness unfolded in Barranquilla, and as tension reached a fever pitch at La Bombonera in Buenos Aires, Chile appeared to have coughed up its first win since March.
As it stands, the All Whites would meet Peru in their World Cup qualifying playoff.
Both countries have 24 points, and a victory by either would be a giant step toward qualifying. They have players of superlative level.
The Argentina national team boasts of having superstars in their team, Sergio Aguero, Angel Di Maria, Javier Pastore and Paulo Dybala to mention a few.
Sampaoli made five changes to the team who were held to a 1-1 draw by Venezuela last month.
Argentina's fortunes largely rest on how other teams perform next week, when they will meet already-eliminated Ecuador who now sit two places below in the table. That would also eliminate long-shot Paraguay.
The two-time defending Copa America champion has only 23 points and is teetering on the edge. Argentina have a poor record in the Ecuadoran capital, losing two out of three of their last World Cup qualifiers there and drawing the other.
After this draw, remaining 25 points in 17 weeks are same points as six in back of Peru.
Indeed, if Argentina wins, any result from Peru and Colombia will be moot.
"We're going to arrive at that final game in great shape", Argentina-born coach Ricardo Gareca said.
'When we use 4-2-3-1 formation he is even further forward, always near the box.