The final of the most impromptu Copa América will be the one most fans had hoped for. Added Football-Related News
On Saturday, Brazil and Argentina compete for the South American title at Rio de Janeiro’s famous Maracana Stadium, considered by many to be the spiritual birthplace of soccer. After many delays and a relocation to one of the countries struck hardest by COVID-19, this final game should be one for the record books.
Seven World Cups and Twenty-Three Continental Titles
Seven World Cups and twenty-three continental titles have been won by Neymar and Brazil, the defending champions, and Lionel Messi and his rivals.
The Argentine superstar would love to help his country win a major title for the first time since 1993. Messi competed in and lost the finals of the Copa America in 2007, 2015, and 2016 as well as the World Cup final in 2014, which Argentina lost to Germany in the Maracana.
Messi, who captained Argentina to a 3-2 penalty shootout victory over Colombia on Tuesday, said, “What I want most is to win a title with the national team.”
Lionel Messi, the star striker for Argentina, admitted on Sunday that he is concerned about getting COVID-19, a day before the start of the Copa America, when his squad would play against several other nations’ national teams.
Before the South American competition began on Sunday night in Brasilia, players or officials from Bolivia, Colombia, and Venezuela tested positive for the virus.
Really Worried About Catching the Virus.
Messi, who will start Monday’s opening match for Argentina against Chile in Rio de Janeiro, said the group was really worried about catching the virus.
‘It bothers us because it is a risk for everyone contracting COVID,’ he told reporters. It’s not easy, but we strive to be cautious. It’s inevitable that something like this will occur.
President Jair Bolsonaro stepped in to save the day, promising that Brazil would finish the tournament even as the country struggled to contain a pandemic and face widespread opposition.
The Brazilian national team, the Seleço, publicly opposed the event in a rare declaration just two days before it began, but then reaffirmed its readiness to play.
More than 17 million illnesses and more than 480,000 fatalities have been reported in the country, according to the World Health Organization. Seventy-one million vaccination doses have already been given out.
Four members of the Bolivian team tested positive for coronavirus, joining the positive results of the Venezuelan players and officials.
Lionel Messi, a superstar for both Argentina and Barcelona, is worried about catching the virus while playing for his country.
While Messi and Argentina were favourites to win the 2007 Copa, Brazil’s 3-0 victory in the final dashed their aspirations. In the previous Copa, Brazil also triumphed over Argentina. Gabriel Jesus and Roberto Firmino scored in the semi-finals to seal the 2-0 win.
Jesus will miss Saturday’s championship game due to suspension, and Firmino may have to make way for Lucas Paquet.
Aspiring to tie Uruguay’s record of 16 continental titles, Argentina is looking to win its 15th. The Seleço is aiming for a record 10th South American title. To comply with safety regulations, the Maracana will be empty for the final.