USA overrun by rampant Lionel Messi and Argentina, 4-0
- Updated: June 22, 2016
There would be no Cinderella story for the US national team in Houston on Tuesday night, as Lionel Messi spearheaded a clinical 4-0 victory for Argentina at NRG Stadium to book a place in the championship final of the Copa America Centenario.
Messi was imperious, setting up Ezequiel Lavezzi’s clever opener and lashing a gorgeous free kick into the top corner to give the favorites a 2-0 halftime lead.
The result was even more one-sided than the score would suggest, as the US simply failed to launch. The hosts struggled to cope with La Albiceleste’s withering high press, rarely knitting together more than a few passes at a time, and would finish the game without a single shot taken.
Striker Gonzalo Higuain doubled the advantage with two coolly-taken finishes after the break, one of them assisted by Messi, to cap a dominant performance that advances Argentina to their third major tournament final in as many years.
- 3′ – ARG – Ezequiel Lavezzi (Lionel Messi)
32′ – ARG – Lionel Messi
50′ – ARG – Gonzalo Higuain
86′ – ARG – Gonzalo Higuain (Lionel Messi)
USA: Third-place match vs. loser of Colombia-Chile semifinal (Saturday, 8 pm ET; FX, Univision, UDN)
ARG: Copa America Centenario Final (Sunday, 8 pm ET; FS1, Univision, UDN) – LAGalayx.com