Messi scores stunning free-kick as Argentina held by Chile
Lionel Messi scored a beautiful free-kick as Argentina drew with Chile after Copa America paid a spectacular tribute to Diego Maradona.
Messi curled home a beautiful free-kick from the edge of the area towards the end of the first half of the Group A opener.
Argentina dominated the first half and could have scored at least twice through Lautaro Martinez and Nico Gonzalez, but both spoiled big chances in front of the goals. 30 minutes in, however, Lionel Messi scored a beauty of a free-kick to put the Albiceleste ahead.
⚽ 73 goals
🎯 51 assists
🇦🇷 124 goal contributions in 151 Argentina appearances for Lionel Messi 😱 pic.twitter.com/W2zxcxZZyH
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) June 14, 2021
Argentina went into the break with a better team but had a narrow lead. But chile equalized 13 minutes into the second half when Arthur Vidal fouled inside the box. Vidal missed the penalty, but Vargas headed home from the rebound.
Argentina tried hard to find a winner in the last 30 minutes, but they could not turn their golden opportunities to the path of the goal.
“This match got complicated to us,”
. “We needed to be calm, have the control of the possession, and play more quickly. The penalty changed the match, too.” Messi said after the match.
Chile’s Vidal said getting a draw despite Messi’s performance was a good result for his team,
“Leo always makes you change your formation. Thank God we managed to secure a draw,” he said.
“We are still recovering our intensity, changing the system a little. It was a tough match, we tried to keep the order.”
The 47th edition of the Copa America – delayed a year because of the coronavirus outbreak – was originally scheduled to take place in Argentina and Colombia but was moved to Brazil after the original hosts were stripped of the tournament.
Just before kick-off, Argentina legend Maradona was remembered with a dazzling light and effects display. A holographic version of the 1986 World Cup winner performs kick-ups before clips of his goals were projected onto the pitch.
Gorgeous tribute to Maradona before Argentina vs Chile at #CopaAmerica pic.twitter.com/ff7KCQ2T1m
— Goal (@goal) June 14, 2021
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