After John Stones and Ilkay Gundogan featured for England and Germany, it was the turn Sergio Aguero, Claudio Bravo, Fernandinho and Gabriel Jesus to test themselves in World Cup qualifying.
It was a disappointment for Aguero’s Argentina, who suffered a 1-0 loss to Paraguay in Cordoba.
Missing the suspended Nicolas Otamendi and Pablo Zabaleta, La Albiceleste might have salvaged a point, but the Blues striker was denied from 12 yards from by ‘keeper Justo Villar.
However, for those of a sky blue persuasion, there were positives as our Argentinean ace, who played the full 90 minutes, came through unscathed to allay any injury fears ahead of Everton on Saturday.
In Merida, Fernandinho and Gabriel Jesus - who’ll be aiding Aguero in the goal-getting stakes from January - had reason to celebrate.
Selecao boss Tite picked both players from the start against Venezuela, with the young forward making an immediate impact.
An error from the opposition gave Gabriel the opportunity to continue his fine form at international level, as he capitalised on a poor pass to execute a sumptuous chip, which gave Brazil an early lead in a victory that sent them to the top of the South American World Cup qualifying section.
There were positives for Claudio Bravo too, whose Chile side delivered a timely performance to give their qualification chances a much needed boost.
The skipper led his side to a 2-1 victory over Peru, which sees them move within two points of Aguero’s Argentina in fifth place.