Messi takes part in training as Argentina prepare for World Cup clash with Australia

South Americans are finding form at the right time ahead of the knockout stages in Qatar

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Argentina continue their bid for a long-awaited third World Cup when they take on Australia in the Round of 16 on Saturday night.

More than 36 years since their last triumph, Argentina arrived in Qatar on a 36-match unbeaten run and as one of the pre-tournament favourites - a status that looked thoroughly undeserved following the shock opening defeat to Saudi Arabia.

Since then, though, the South Americans have improved with each game, overcoming a jittery first half against Mexico to win 2-0, before turning on the style with a dominant victory over Poland.

Crucially for Argentina, star man and captain Lionel Messi looks to be getting better every game. His second half performance against Mexico - where he scored the first goal - was followed by an excellent display against Poland, even if he did have a penalty saved.

Argentina's uptick in form does not bode well for Australia, although this World Cup has delivered plenty of shocks and surprises, so anything could be possible at the Ahmad bin Ali Stadium on Saturday night.

Ahead of the game, Messi and his Argentina teammates took part in a final training session at Qatar University in Doha to prepare for the Socceroos.

Check out the best photos from that training session in the photo gallery above. To move on to the next photo, click on the arrows or swipe if using a mobile device.

Updated: December 03, 2022, 8:31 AM