Lionel Messi said it was my final, reveals Angel Di Maria after Argentina's historic Copa America win
Angel Di Maria revealed that Lionel Messi told him the Copa America final would be his moment to shine as the duo helped Argentina seal a long-awaited triumph over Brazil on Saturday at the world-famous Maracana in Rio de Janeiro.
The Paris Saint-Germain winger scored the lone goal in the 22nd-minute of the final that ended his country's international trophy drought of almost 30 years and helped Messi get his hands on an elusive senior international trophy.
"It's going to be unforgettable," Goal.com quoted Di Maria after the game. "Messi told me thanks to me, I said thanks to him! He told me that it was my final, that it was the rematch for the finals that I couldn't play. It had to be today and today it was."
He added: "I am happy for my daughters, my wife, my parents, all the people who supported us, and for all the crazy people who came here. A World Cup is coming up soon and this is a huge boost."
Angel Di Maria latched on to a ball over the top and capitalised on an error from Renan Lodi before lobbing Ederson Santana de Moraes to find the back of the net. Maria netted the goal to put Argentina ahead. He became the first Argentina player to score in a Copa America final since Cesar Delgado in 2004.
Argentina finished their 2021 Copa America campaign unbeaten. Lionel Scaloni's side finished top of their group with three wins and a draw against Chile. In the quarterfinal, they won 3-0 against Ecuador to progress to the final four.
With this defeat, PSG and Brazilian star Neymar wait for the continental trophy continues as he was out with injury in the 2019 Copa America when Brazil won.