Gabriel Deck Leads Argentina Past the United States to Reach AmeriCup Finals

Gabriel Deck has helped Argentina take down the defending champions…

The 27-year-old Argentine professional basketball player scored 30 points to lead Argentina past the reigning champion USA Basketball team 82-73 in the AmeriCup semifinals.

Gabriel DeckNicolás Laprovittola added 18 points to help the Argentina team advance to the finals.

It was a rematch of the gold-medal game from the most recent AmeriCup tournament in 2017, a game in which the U.S. prevailed.

Not this time, not after Argentina outscored the Americans — a team composed of players who have been in the G League or on internationally based teams — 17-7 in the final 4:59.

“For sure, a lot of credit to Argentina and [coach Pablo Prigioni],” U.S. coach Alex Jensen said. “It’s a good team, veteran team, a lot of good players, a lot of different weapons and they did a great job in the end. We made our runs. They did a good job taking it up another notch and we lost our patience.”

Argentina will now play Brazil, who beat Canada in the other semifinal, on Sunday for the gold; Canada plays the U.S. earlier Sunday for bronze.

Norris Cole‘s layup with 5:12 left put the U.S. up 66-65, but that would be the last lead for the Americans.

“This is a good learning experience for our team,” Cole said. “And we’ll learn from it.”

Cole led the U.S. with 18 points and Zylan Cheatham added 10 for the Americans, who got to the line only 10 times — compared with 29 for Argentina.

Facundo Campazzo scored 10 for Argentina, which lost the 2017 AmeriCup final to the U.S. 81-76. Argentina led for 33 of the game’s 40 minutes.

Erik Lamela Wins FIFA’s Puskas Award

Erik Lamela is celebrating his award-winning rabona

The 29-year-old Argentine professional footballer, who plays as an attacking midfielder or winger for La Liga club Sevilla and the Argentina national team, has won this year’s Puskas Award.

Erik Lamela

Lamela earned the award for his “rabona” for Tottenham Hotspur against Arsenal.

Meanwhile, Bayern Munich forward Robert Lewandowski equaled Cristiano Ronaldo‘s FIFA The Best record when he won the award for a second time on Monday.

The Bayern Munich forward retained his FIFA The Best award following an incredible campaign in which he scored a Bundesliga record 41 goals, fighting off competition from Lionel Messi and Mohamed Salah.

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel claimed the Manager of the Year award following success in the Champions League in 2021.

Chelsea and Senegal‘s Edouard Mendy won the Goalkeeper of the Year award.

Denmark team and staff won the Fair Play award following their reaction to Christian Eriksen‘s cardiac arrest at Euro 2020. Denmark and Finland fans also received the Best Fan award for their spontaneous unified chanting in support of Eriksen after he was taken off the pitch.

The award was first handed out in its present guise in 2016, after FIFA ended their five-year partnership with the Ballon d’Or. Ronaldo, who was given a special award for breaking the international men’s goal scoring record in 2021, won back-to-back awards in the first two years.

Meanwhile, Messi and part-Brazilian player Jorginho were named to the FIFA FIFPro Men’s World XI team.

FIFA FIFPro Men’s World XI
Gianluigi Donnarumma – Paris Saint-Germain, Italy
David Alaba – Real Madrid, Austria
Ruben Dias – Manchester City, Portugal
Leonardo Bonucci – Juventus, Italy
Jorginho – Chelsea, Italy
N’Golo Kante – Chelsea, France
Kevin De Bruyne – Manchester City, Belgium
Cristiano Ronaldo – Manchester United, Portugal
Erling Haaland – Borussia Dortmund, Norway
Robert Lewandowski – Bayern Munich, Poland
Lionel Messi – Paris Saint-Germain, Argentina

Barcelona midfielder Alexia Putellas won the women’s award.

Pablo Carreno Busta Helps Lead Spain Into ATP Cup Semifinals

Pablo Carreno Busta has helped lead Spain into the next round of the ATP Cup.

The 30-year-old Spanish professional tennis player defeated Filip Krajinovic 6-3, 6-4 to secure an ATP Cup semifinal spot for Spain.

Pablo Carreno Busta Meanwhile, Roberto Bautista Agut completed the group-stage victory over Serbia with a 6-1, 6-4 defeat of Dusan Lajovic later Wednesday in the second of the singles matches.

Spain only needed to win one of the three matches against Serbia to top Group A and set up a semifinal against Poland.

Carreno Busta got the job done in 80 minutes, registering his third singles win of the round-robin stage.

“It was the best match of the group,” Carreno Busta said in a post-match interview. “I am close to 100%. Today I played very well, very aggressively, very solid. I feel very comfortable on court, so it is going well.”

Spain dropped only one set on its way to victories over Chile, Norway and Serbia, the 2020 champions.

Chile’s 2-1 win over Norway in the day session meant Serbia needed to sweep Spain to advance.

Alejandro Tabilo beat Viktor Durasovic 6-1, 6-7 (5), 6-1 to give Chile the lead before No. 8-ranked Casper Ruud leveled it for Norway with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Christian Garin.

Tabilo and Tomas Barrios Vera clinched the doubles 6-0, 6-4, giving Chile a 2-1 record in the round-robin stage and leaving Norway 0-3.

Poland reached the semifinals for the first time when No. 9-ranked Hubert Hurkacz beat Argentina‘s Diego Schwartzman 6-1, 6-4 following Kamil Majchrzak‘s 6-3, 7-6 (3) win over Federico Delbonis.

Poland finished the round-robin stage 3-0 in Group D, also beating Georgia and Greece.

“I’m so happy for our team. We’re in the semis, so super proud of that achievement,” Hurkacz said. “We have great team spirit. We support each other. I think the atmosphere that we bring helps us play better.”

Greece picked up its first victory with a 2-0 win over last-place Georgia.

Lionel Messi to Play in Argentina’s World Cup Qualifier Match Against Brazil

Lionel Messi is returning to international play…

The 34-year-old Argentine professional footballer and Argentina captain is fit again, and he’s set to start during Argentina’s World Cup qualifier against Brazil on Tuesday.

Lionel MessiMeanwhile, Neymar will miss out for the visitors after feeling pain in his thigh, according to to team.

Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni made similar comments ahead of their last game, a 1-0 win over Uruguay on Friday, although Messi only appeared for the final 14 minutes of the match.

Argentina are second in South America’s 10-team qualifying group, six points behind Brazil, who are the only team from the region to have secured their place at Qatar 2022 so far.

Scaloni repeated that Messi, 34, had recovered fully from the knee and hamstring issues that kept him out of Paris Saint-Germain‘s last two games and was ready for one of the biggest matches in the South American calendar.

“He was physically fit the other day and in the end we decided that the best thing was for him to play a few minutes so that he could get a feel for it and he is confirmed to play tomorrow,” Scaloni said of Tuesday’s match in San Juan.

“It’s going to be a very difficult game. They are the team that leads the qualifiers and they are already through to the finals.”

Brazil will be without Neymar after their top scorer reported feeling pains in the adductor region of his left thigh.

Neymar Jr. said he felt insecure about the situation and as there is not enough time to carry out complementary exams the technical commission decided to rest the player who will not travel with the team to San Juan, location of Tuesday’s game against Argentina,” the Brazil team said in a statement.

The top four teams in South American qualifying progress automatically to next year’s FIFA World Cup finals and the fifth-placed side goes into an inter-regional playoff.

Argentina are unbeaten in 26 games, a run that includes a 1-0 win over Brazil in the Copa America final in Rio de Janeiro in July.

Belén Succi  & Argentine Women’s Field Hockey Team Claim Silver at Tokyo Games

2020 Tokyo Games

The third time didn’t prove to be the charm for Belén Succi and her teammates, but they’re still going home medalists…

The 35-year-old Argentine field hockey goalkeeper and her teammates lost their gold medal final match against the Netherlands in the women’s field hockey competition 3-1, having to settle for the silver medal.

Argentina Women's Field Hockey Team

“It was a pretty close match. We face a very dynamic team. They scored the goals very quickly and we couldn’t recover from that,” said Las Leonas star María Noel Barrionuevo, who said she was hugely “proud” of her teammates.

“I feel sad about the defeat, but at the same time happy, because at the end of the day we were able to reach an Olympic final, which is something amazing, and we were also able to take home the silver medal,” he added.

It’s the third time Argentina has come up as the runner-up in Olympic competition. They’d previously taken the silver at the 2000 Sydney Games and the 2012 London Games.

The Argentina women’s team also won the bronze medal in 2004 Athens Games and 2008 Beijing Games.

It’s the Netherlands’ third gold medal in the last four Olympics.

Marcos Moneta Helps Lead Argentina to Its First Medal at the Tokyo Games

2020 Tokyo Games

Marcos Moneta will be returning home a hero…

The 21-year-old Argentine rugby sevens player helped lead his Argentina rugby seven team to the bronze medal at the 2020 Tokyo Games, after a shocking 17-12 win over Great Britain.

Marcos Moneta

Moneta, who was making his Olympic debut at this year’s Summer Olympics, helped give Argentina is first medal of the games.

Argentina earned the win after tries from Lautaro Bazan Velez, the Games’ overall top try scorer Moneta, and Ignacio Mendy.

It’s a monumental achievement for former sevens star-turned-coach Santiago Gomez Cora, who crashed out in the quarters in Brazil as a player.

It’s also the first ever Olympic medal for Argentina in rugby sevens.

Moneta scored six tries in his country’s successful Tokyo 2020 campaign including a sparkling effort against Great Britain in the bronze medal match to spark wild scenes amongst the jubilant Argentina delegation.

Moneta knows what this historic result will mean for the sport in his homeland.

“After football I think rugby is our top sport in Argentina, it’s a passionate sport, we have a professional rugby league, we have lots of children playing the game now.

“This bronze medal is for all the children who are playing the game in Argentina and all the fans who love rugby around the world.”

Argentina’s star man said it was team spirit which spurred the Pumas on to beat Great Britain to win bronze.

“I think the key to our victory was the team, our mentality, our spirit. The team was so united, we showed what we can achieve when we can play together.

“Our country is very passionate, we love rugby, football, tennis and many sports. It’s a pleasure to represent Argentina, when we put this jersey on we know we are representing our family, our friends, our clubs, our people and it’s the highest honor.

“Everyone got up at 5.30am to watch our medal match, I think our fans and our country will be euphoric and they won’t sleep for a while.”

Moneta also spoke about how difficult it was to prepare during the pandemic to play against the sport’s leading sevens nations.

“Preparation for the tournament was difficult, at times we could only train at our homes and we were doing sessions together on Zoom and Skype.

“Luckily we could play some tournaments before the Games like the Madrid sevens. Our minds were focused on the Olympics, that was our main objective to get onto the podium.”

Lionel Messi Photo with Copa America Trophy Now Most-Liked Sports Photo on Instagram 

Lionel Messi is the new IG sports image king…

An Instagram photo of the 34-year-old Argentine professional footballer holding the Copa America trophy following Argentina’s win over Brazil has become the most liked sports photo on the social media platform, surpassing a record 20 million likes.

Lionel Messi  

Messi celebrated his first major title with Argentina as the Albiceleste lifted the Copa America trophy after a 1-0 win over Brazil at the Maracana Stadium on July 10.

Messi posted the picture with the caption: “What a beautiful madness! This is unbelievable! Thank you, God! We are the champions!”

The post broke the previous record of 19.8 million likes that was held by Cristiano Ronaldo after he paid tribute to Diego Maradona following his death.

Ronaldo shared a black and white photograph of himself with Maradona and wrote: “Today I’m saying goodbye to a friend and the world is saying goodbye to an eternal genius. One of the best of all-time. An unparalleled magician. He leaves too soon, but he leaves a legacy without limits and an emptiness that will never be filled. Rest in peace, ace. You will never be forgotten.”

Messi, a six-time Ballon d’Or winner, was voted the top player of the Copa America after his four goals and five assists in the competition.

The Argentina captain is expected to sign a new contract with Barcelona soon.

Angel Di Maria Leads Argentina to Copa America Title

Angel Di Maria will be getting a hero’s welcome…

Argentina won their first major title in 28 years on Saturday when a goal by the 33-year-old Argentine professional footballer gave them a 1-0 win over Brazil and a record-equaling 15th Copa America.

Angel Di Maria

Argentina’s win was a particular triumph for Barcelona striker Lionel Messi, who picked up his first ever title in a blue and white shirt after more than a decade of club and individual honors.

Di Maria started for just the second time in the Copa and he justified his selection by scoring the opener midway through the first half.

Renan Lodi failed to cut out a long ball forward from Rodrigo De Paul and Di Maria lobbed the stranded Ederson with aplomb.

Brazil piled on the pressure in an exciting second half but even with five strikers on the field they could not get an equalizer against an Argentine defense protected by the outstanding De Paul.

“I can’t cry yet,” Di Maria said after the match. “We dreamed of getting this, and we fought. Many people criticized us and asked us not to come back [to the national team].”

The match itself was a disappointing one, with Argentina the better side in a cagey first half that featured 21 fouls.

“First we have to congratulate our opponents especially for the first half when they neutralized us,” said Brazilian defender Thiago Silva.

“In the second half there was no contest — only one team tried to play football, the other just wasted time as we knew they would. It’s not an excuse, we didn’t do what we had to, principally in the first half.”

The Argentine players surrounded their captain at the final whistle. Goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez celebrated what he called a Maracanazo, a remarkable win at the famous Rio stadium.

“I’m speechless,” he said. “I knew my dream would come true, and where better than the Maracanazo and giving the title to the best in the world and fulfilling his dream.”

Messi finished the tournament’s joint top goalscorer with four goals and was elected joint best player along with Neymar. But he was quiet throughout and uncharacteristically missed a golden opportunity to wrap the game up with two minutes remaining.

When the final whistle went, Argentina TV declared “Argentina Champions, Lionel Messi Champion!”

“This is a very big title,” said Argentine coach Lionel Scaloni. “I hope that Argentines can enjoy it. The fans love the team unconditionally and I think they identify with this side that never drops its guard.”

The victory was Argentina’s 15th Copa America triumph and means they draw level with Uruguay as the all-time leading winners.

Their win extended their sequence of undefeated matches to 20 under Lionel Scaloni and handed Brazil their first competitive defeat since they lost to Belgium in the quarterfinals of the 2018 World Cup.

Lionel Messi Helps Lead Argentina into Copa America Final Against Brazil

Lionel Messi is celebrating a big win…

The 34-year-old Argentine professional footballer, currently a free agent after his Barcelona contract expired, helped lead Argentina to victory, as his team beat Colombia on penalties on Tuesday to set up a Copa America final against Brazil.

Lionel Messi

Argentina won 3-2 following a 1-1 draw in normal time in Brasilia.

Messi continued his special tournament by assisting a 7th-minute Lautaro Martinez goal, but an off-balance Luis Diaz restored level terms in the second half.

Aston Villa goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez and former Arsenal man David Ospina took center stage for penalties, where Messi smashed his home past Ospina.

Martinez then saved penalties from Spurs’ Davinson Sanchez, Everton’s Yerry Mina, and Boca JuniorsEdwin Cardona to lead Argentina

https://twitter.com/FOXSoccer/status/1412579522252349443

Lionel Messi Becomes Argentina’s Most-Capped Player

Lionel Messi is Argentina’s player with the mostest…

The 34-year-old Argentine professional footballer became Argentina‘s most-capped player on Monday when he captained the Albiceleste in their 4-1 win over Bolivia at the Copa America.

Lionel Messi

The Barcelona star has now turned out 148 times for his country, moving him ahead of former Barca teammate Javier Mascherano, who had 147 caps.

Ex-Inter Milan defender Javier Zanetti held the record before Mascherano and completes the podium with 143 international appearances.

With 75 goals for Argentina, Messi is also his country’s all-time leading scorer, having moved past Gabriel Batistuta (54 goals) in 2016.

Sergio Aguero, who won his 100th international cap against Bolivia, is third in the rankings with 42 goals.

Messi, who turned 34 last week, has won everything in the game at club level but is yet to taste success in senior international football.

He won the Under-20 World Cup in 2005 and an Olympic gold medal with Argentina’s U23s in 2008, but has lost four major finals with the first team.

With Messi in the side, Argentina were beaten by Germany in the 2014 World Cup final and have lost at the last stage in the Copa America in 2007, 2015 and 2016.

As Messi focuses on winning a first major trophy with his country this summer, his future at Barca remains unresolved.

His contract with the club expires on Wednesday and if a new deal is not agreed upon before then, he officially becomes a free agent on Thursday.

However, Barca are working hard to reach an agreement over a new contract and are confident he will extend his 20-year relationship with the club.