Brazil has confirmed its place in the Copa America final with a 2-0 win against old rivals Argentina in a Superclassico at the Mineirão.
Gabriel Jesus and Roberto Firmino both scored for the host nation. Messi who has won every trophy for his football clubs, has to wait even longer for a trophy while playing for his nation.
Argentina started the first half with maximum ball possession on their side while Brazil tried to close the gaps between players with scary counter attacks. With a great individual move by Dani Alves and a marvelous assist from Firmino to Jesus, Brazil took the lead in the match at the 17th minute.
Brazil captain Dani Alves said: “Our goal was within reach. There is one more step to go before we fulfill our objective. The standard here is very high, there are no easy teams. You have to work and fight for what you want and we worked for this.”
After the first goal, the Albiceleste were playing a more attacking game and put more pressure on the Selecao under Messi’s instruction. Messi was playing in the central midfield to link up with two strikers. The plan was working for them as they managed to get a few free kicks, but failed to equalize when an Aguero header was defended by the crossbar.
During the second half both teams created some close chances to score but failed to find the net. Brazil keeper Allison had some good moves to save the ball but luck was against Argentina as Messi’s kick hit the bar post. In the 71st minute, Gabriel Jesus and Roberto Firmino combined again and made the score 2-0 with a stunning counter attack. After that Argentina had no chance to come back into the match.
“We had chances, the ball hit the woodwork, it flashed across the six-yard box, there were penalties that weren’t given,” said Messi, “Today it just didn’t happen.”
Brazil midfielder Casimero said: “We knew that it would be difficult because of the players they have.
“It’s about details. We knew it would be scrappy and that there would be wind-ups and time wasting. But we have to congratulate our strikers who did a great job. When they got chances, they scored.” he added.
Brazil who have lost only two out of 42 games under coach Tite, will face either Peru or Chile in Sunday’s Final.
> Dipto Paul
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