Copa America: Messi Leads Argentina to 2-0 Victory Over Canada

Argentina began its Copa América title defense with a 2-0 win over Canada on Thursday night in Atlanta, marking their pursuit of a third consecutive major trophy. The match, held at a sold-out Mercedes-Benz Stadium, saw key contributions from Lionel Messi, who set a new Copa América record with his 35th appearance.

Messi, nearing his 37th birthday, orchestrated Argentina’s first goal in the 49th minute. A deft header from the legendary forward threaded the ball to Alexis Mac Allister, who collided with Canada’s goalkeeper Maxime Crépeau while delivering a pass to Julián Álvarez. The striker capitalized on the opportunity, scoring his eighth international goal with a shot into an almost empty net.

The second goal came in the 88th minute when Messi provided an assist to Lautaro Martínez. This assist extended Messi’s own record to 18 assists in Copa América competitions. The victory reinforces Argentina’s dominant form, following their successes in the 2021 Copa América and the 2022 World Cup.

This year’s Copa América is being hosted in the United States for the second time, adding a different dynamic to the South American championship. Messi’s landmark performance not only underscores his enduring influence but also sets a high standard for his team as they aim to continue their winning streak in major tournaments.

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