Copa America: Messi-inspired Argentina Beats USA 4-0

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Copa America: Argentina drubs United States 4-0 as Lionel Messi stars. Though the Americans had shown a lot of promise by reaching the semis, it was a tough night for them. Jurgen Klinsmann’s men were aiming for a historic triumph over Messi’s Argentina at Reliant Stadium in Houston, but it wasn’t to be.

Lionel Messi became Argentina’s all-time record goalscorer as the two-time world champions outclassed the United States 4-0 to reach the Copa America Centenario final here Tuesday.

Messi curled in a magnificent 32nd-minute free-kick to take his total to 55 goals as the United States’ campaign ended with an emphatic defeat in front of a 70,858 crowd at Houston’s NRG Stadium.

There was a strange moment right before the start of the second half of the Copa America Centenario semifinal on Tuesday — an Argentina fan ran onto the pitch to hug Lionel Messi. And Messi hugged him back as, according to the Houston Chronicle‘s Brian Smith, security did little to stop it.

Argentina fans are finally reveling in the array of skills by their star man and can be more than satisfied at what he has produced during this tournament so far. A goal and two assists are just a confirmation of what is clearly evident – Messi is determined to lift his first major trophy with Argentina after failing in his previous two finals (Copa America and World Cup).

Messi’s stats in tonight’s game read: shots (on target) 4(3), dribbles (succ.) 5(5), passes (succ.) 67(80%), 4 key passes.

“We’ve been playing well from day one and we deserve to be in the final,” said a delighted Messi, dedicating his goals tally to the work of his teammates.

“I’m happy to have the record, and I’m happy to play with the teammates that have made it possible. I owe it to them,” said Messi, who is now one clear of Gabriel Batistuta’s mark of 54 goals.