Going into the Copa America Centenario semifinals, there was a lot of optimism in the U.S. Once the home side made it through the group stage, there was a sense that anything could happen. Unfortunately for them, it was Lionel Messi that happened.
In the 32nd minute, Messi scored his 55th career international goal — surpassing Batistuta for Argentina’s all-time record — with a free kick that was so perfect 11 goalkeepers couldn’t have stopped it.
Before that, in just the third minute, Messi lobbed a perfect pass to Ezequiel Lavezzi for Argentina’s first goal.
Suddenly, those pre-match predictions in the U.S. were looking a bit silly. (Argentina went on to win 4–0. The U.S. didn’t have a single shot in the match.)
Good luck to underdog Lionel Messi and Argentina! pic.twitter.com/PkKbSMuglF
— The Pickle (@sportspickle) June 22, 2016