The two South American stars will meet on Saturday evening on the lawn of the legendary Rio Maracana.
The Copa America will have its dream final Brazil-Argentina, after the qualification after the suspense of the Argentines against Colombia (1-1, 3 tab to 2) on Tuesday, thanks to a heroic Emiliano Martinez on penalties and a Messi decisive passer. It was the Martinez festival in Brasilia, with Lautaro opening the scoring in the seventh minute of play and three shots on goal stopped by Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano.
But the grand final of the Copa America, Saturday evening, at the legendary Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro, will above all be a star-studded duel between Messi and Neymar, former teammates at FC Barcelona, who have never won a major title with their selection. national.
Lionel Messi’s best goals with Barça in La Liga (2004-2021)
For the six-time Argentinian golden ball, it will be an opportunity to break the curse after four lost finals (World Cup 2014, Copa America 2007, 2015 and 2016) and to put an end to an endless scarcity of his country, which does not win no trophy since the 1993 Copa America.
Messi still ferryman
With a bloody ankle after a tackle from Fabra, the number 10 did not equal the record of 77 goals of Pelé, South American top scorer in the selection, but delivered his fifth assist in six matches in the tournament and failed did not tremble during the penalty shootout. Against Colombia, Argentinian coach Lionel Scaloni left Parisians Paredes and Di Maria on the bench, preferring to align Guido Rodriguez as sentinel and Nico Gonzalez in attack, alongside the tandem Messi-Martinez, very prominent at the start of the match.
Well launched in the box by Lo Celso, the Argentine number 10 got rid of Mina’s marking and centered back for the Inter Milan striker, who opened the scoring with the flat foot (7th). The Colombian reaction was not long in coming. Back from suspension, Cuadrado wanted to celebrate his hundredth selection with a goal, but his shot was deflected by Emiliano Martinez.
Colombia was showing more and more pressing, touching wood twice in quick succession, with a strike countered by Barrios repelled by the post (35th) and a header from Mina on the crossbar (36th). The Argentina woke up just before the break, with a point blank header from Gonzalez being diverted by Ospina.
The Colombian efforts were finally rewarded, with a fantastic ride from Luis Diaz, who took Pezzella speed and preceded the exit of the Argentine goalkeeper (61st), on a bright opening from Cardona.
Scaloni finally made up his mind to bring in Di Maria, who put Argentina back in the right direction. The Parisian winger delivered two caviars at the end of the match, but saw Lautaro Martinez miss the inevitable by shooting aside (73rd) and Messi shooting at the post (80th). It was Emiliano Martinez who finally qualified the Argentines, stopping the shots on goal from Sanchez, Mina and Cardona.