Argentina won the Copa America title for the first time since 1993 on Sunday, defeating Brazil 1-0 in the final at the Maracana in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (July 11). Angel Di Maria’s goal in the 22nd minute was enough for the Albiceleste to defeat Tite’s men and end their run of major finals failures.
Although captain Lionel Messi was not at his best tonight, he ends his international title drought. The final was far from spectacular, but Lionel Scaloni and his team will be overjoyed to have ended Argentina’s 28-year wait for the Copa America trophy.
Argentina’s winning goal came in the 22nd minute at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, after Rodrigo de Paul made a long pass to ngel di Maria. The veteran striker, 33, took advantage of some sloppy defending from left-back Renan Lodi to take control and lob it past goalkeeper Ederson.
It was only Brazil’s third goal of the tournament. Neymar tried hard with dribbles and passes, but Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez was barely tested. Tite’s team had won its previous five Copa America matches and scored goals in all of them.
Messi’s performance in the final was not as impressive as it had been in previous tournament matches, in which he had four goals and five assists. In the 88th minute, he had a clear opportunity to dribble Ederson, but the Brazilian goalkeeper stopped him.
The title, on the other hand, provides the superstar with some relief after all of the doubts about his ability to play for the national team that have plagued him throughout his career.
(More is on the way.)