Messi has taken revenge. Argentina, in a match in which they put their resistance to pain to the test, beat Brazil at the Maracana. The Argentine 10 has achieved what Maradona could not: win a Copa América. A goal from Ángel Di María buried the undefeated of a Brazil that had not lost since November 2019. La Canarinha, a steamroller of the tournament, was frustrated by an Argentine defense that set up a barricade.
Argentina has won its fifteenth Copa América with a team in full transition. Coach Lionel Scaloni used youth to rebuild a team that was hit hard at the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Messi, 34, took over the leadership of the squad. During the continental tournament, he scored four goals and led the team to show its best side. After the end of the game against Brazil, everyone carried him on their shoulders to lift him into the air. It was not for lower. Rosario won his first title with the senior team after losing a World Cup final in 2014 and three Copa América finals to Brazil (2007) and Chile (2015 and 2016).
Brazil tried to the last. Commander Neymar, without a captain’s armband, led his teammates to attack any space or crevice left by the Albiceleste. They tried Richarlison, but no luck. Emiliano Martínez denied any attack by Canarinha . Tite, desperate, sent to the field a Vinicius who had only played against Ecuador. Emerson found depth in the attack, but no goal. The right ankle of the Argentine Gonzalo Montiel summed up the Argentine resistance: full of blood, but firm. Messi even had the opportunity to make it 2-0, but his legs did not respond to him. Brazil pressed; Argentina held out. And that was the key. Messi, wearing the albiceleste, already knows what it is to win.