Argentina vs Brazil summary: score, goals, highlights, Copa America 2021
Argentina vs Brazil: Copa America final
Argentina won their first major title in 28 years on Saturday when an Angel Di Maria goal gave them a 1-0 win over Brazil and a record-equalling 15th Copa America.
Di Maria got the winner midway through the first half when he lobbed Ederson after full back Renan Lodi failed to cut out a long through ball.
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 honours.
Messi, who missed a golden chance to score with two minutes remaining, finished the tournament’s joint top goalscorer with four goals and was elected joint best player along with Neymar.
Crestfallen Neymar congratulates Di Maria
Tears of joy from the men in sky blue and white as the small group of Argentina fans celebrate.
It's all over in Rio. Argentina win the 2021 Copa America!!!!
Messi now just a minute away from glory !
De Paul breaks into the box and Argentina fail to convert, Brazil break and Argentina fail to impede the PSG man.
5 minutes left in Rio... five minutes for Messi and co. to hang on!
We're in time added on in Rio!
Final minute of the game. When they talk about football being a battle at times, this game is the epitome of that reference.
De Paul and Messi combine well and the captain loses his footing at a critical moment and Ederson gathers
Montiel carded for a trip
Palacios clips Vnicius and Brazil win a dangerous free. Neymar to take, Gabigol strikes the breaking ball and this time Martinez is called into action and makes a solid save to deny the Seleçâo. Nerves jangling now as we head towards the 90 minute mark.
Great defending from Otamendi as the Benfica man averts the danger and concedes a corner. Brazil pushing but Martinez yet to be fully tested.
Limited output from Vinicius in his brief time on the pitch.
Gabigol rifles into the side netting as Danilo drives the ball high and wide
Marquinhos carded too for back-chat to the ref.
Otamendi carded for a trip on Neymar and a mild scuffle breaks out
Ten minutes left in Rio.
Pezzella, Palacios and Nico Gonzalez all on for Argentina with Lautaro, Romero and Di Maria all replaced
Argentina set to make a trio of subs as Brazl appeal for penalty. Tite incensed but the referee waves the game on.
Tite throwing everything into the mix with Firmino, Richarlison, Neymar and Gabigol all attacking options for Brazil.
Brazil make their changes with Gabigol and Emerson on for Lodi and Paqueta off
Things getting scrappy once again with free flowing football somwhat limited.
Paqueta the next man to be carded as he fouls Nicolás Tagliafico
Emerson and Gabigol set to make an entraance for Tite's men.
20 minutes remain. Still 11 vs 11 ! Messi 20 minutes away from international glory !
Brazil's early second half impetus has waned as Argentina regain more possession. Lodi carded for a trip.
De Paul carded for a trip on Neymar
The ball falls to Guido and the Betis man drives high and wide.
Lodi clips Messi and a clear trip from the Atleti player.
Messi weaves into the box and loses possession and appeals for s spot kick, nothing doing for the Uruguayan official.
Thiago Silva miscues and almost puts the ball into his own net. Corner for Argentina.
Vinicius set to come on for Brazil with Everton. Lo Celso off too with Nicolás Tagliafico his replacement
Just a reminder that should things be level at the end of 90', there will be extra time and subsequently penalty kicks should thngs be tied after 120 minutes.
Approaching the hour mark in Rio and it's Brazil very much in control now as the Seleçâo press with Argentine sitting deeper.
Richarlison strikes from an acute angle and Msrtinez is level to the challenge and diverts the ball for a corner.
Paredes off for Argentina with Betis' Rodriguez his replacement
A let-off for Scaloni's men as Brazil start to exert sustained pressure on La Albiceleste!
The ball is in the Argentina net as Richarlison sees his effort ruled out. The Everton man was offside upon picking up the ball initially
Lo Celso clips Neymar and is carded.... shocking challenge from the Tottenham man !
Both De Paul and Di Maria have been excellent for Argentina tonight, difficult for players to shine given the stop-start nature of the first first half.
Messi now just 45 minutes away from claiming his first major silverware in an Argentina shirt.
Fred (on a yellow) was the player to make way for the Liverpool striker.
The sides are back on the pitch with Firmino on for Brazil.
It's been gritty and football has been something of a premium with late challenges and tempers fraying being the dominant features of the first 45 minutes. The highlight of the half has been undoubtedly the Di Maria goal and De Paul assist to find the PSG winger. Messi has been quiet and Neymar even quieter.
The whistle sounds and it's half-time in Rio.
Lo Celso almost finds Lautaro but Ederson is alert to intercept the ball.One minute of added time has been confirmed
The ball is whipped in and skips past both the men in yellow and the Argentine defenders. Brazil starting to find their rhythm right on the cusp of half-time.
Corner for Brazil (first one of the night), Neymar to take.
Brazil finally starting to start to play the ball around and Martinez in the Argentina goal is called into action for the first time of the night.
Good news for Argentina fans is that Di Maria is back in action and seems to have overcome his ankle issues. Five minutes remain in this first half.
Di Maria is in trouble as the PSG man seems to have damaged his ankle ... the player grabs his achilles in agony.
Bad news for Argentina as Lautaro seems to have developed a muscular problem. The Inter player touches his abductor but seems ok to continue.
Four in the Argentina wall. Neymar strikes and the wall does its job as the ball strikes Lautaro.
Ideal distance for Neymar as the PSG man grabs the ball.
Mess breaks and manages to get off a left footed shot as he was being herded away from goal. Brazil break and Paredes fouls Neymar on the edge of the Argentina box.
Brazil have really struggled to get into the swing of things tonight. Argentina certainly the hungrier side of the two!
Brazil ahead in terms of possession but Argentina ahead on the scoreboard !
Di Maria again and the PSG star drives a ferocious left foot shot which is deflected. One of the bright sparks on the Maracana 'battlefield' tonight!
The goal has been one of the few spells of football in a very badly tempered opening stage
Possible hint of offside there as the PSG winger broke. Great ball from De Paul as VAR will check the goal.
Messi now on the floor after being caught. Neymar too collides with Paredes and the PSG star too is on the floor.
It's going to be a busy night for the Uruguayan referee as Montiel is caught this time by Casemiro.
Rash challenges flying in all over the pitch now as Otamendi takes out Paqueta
Casemiro body checks Messi and despite the Argentine's protest the Uruguayan official waves away the protests.
Neymar on the ball for the first time tonight and delivers a party piece with an over head control.
Argentina enjoying the bulk of the early possession with the game being staged principally in the Brazil half.
The River Plate man is back on his feet and seems okay to continue. Dangerous challenge from the Brazilian.
Both sides finding their way as Fred is awarded an early card for a rash challenge on Montiel.
Brazil get us started and the 2021 Copa America final is up and running.
Thiago Silva and Messi take the toss with Uruguayan referee looking on .... A minute's silence will be held as has been the case throughout the competition for the victims of covid-19.
The Brazilian national anthem is a bit of a belter !
National anthem time with Argentina first up.... Now the turn of Brazil....
The teams take to the filed at the Maracana with a barrage of fireworks to greet both teams. 8,000 fans in attendance which is great to see with all previous games at this year's tournament staged behind closed doors as a measure with covid-19 cases still high in Brazil,
FIFA President Infantino to attend final
The Swiss was spotted entering the VIP section of the famous Maracana stadium over an hour ago and spent some time on the pitch along with CONMEBOL dignitaries
Messi warms up on the Maracana pitch as kick-off looms
Previous final meetings between Argentina-Brazil
The two sides have met four times in finals, three in the Copa America and one in the Confederations Cup - in 2005. Argentina beat Brazil in the Copa America’s forerunner in 1937 but have not done so in a showpiece match since.
Pre match comment: Tite (BRA)
“That’s the past, you can’t look at the past as a guide,” Tite said. “We are unbeaten in the last two Copas America, we have better numbers but I don’t see that has much significance.”
The expectation and banter has ramped up on both sides – Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro told his Argentine opposite number last week he expected Brazil to win 5-0 – but Tite downplayed the mind games.
“It’s a mental marathon we face,” he said. “Our game is different from that of the press and the fans. In terms of preparation and training and concentration. We are focusing on our priorities.”
“It’s sometimes provocations, it’s sometimes banter, it’s sometimes history, it’s sometimes about the club matches players have played against each other.”
“But it’s not the essence, the essence is hard work day to day and preparing to play a good game.”
Pre match comments: Scaloni (ARG)
"I don’t believe in revenge, I believe in the work we’ve done, and the project we have here,” Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni said.
"For sure, tomorrow it will come to a conclusion, this is a final. We are playing our eternal rival and I hope it is a good game and that people can enjoy it. The world will no doubt stop to watch but there is no revenge.”
Much of the pre-match talk has revolved around Argentina’s trophy drought. They last won the Copa America in 1993 and since then, Brazil have won it five times.
The drought is particularly galling to Messi, who has won everything with Barcelona and nothing with Argentina.
Scaloni, though, said the lack of an international medal was no stain on Messi's otherwise breath-taking resume.
"Win or lose he is still the greatest footballer of all time, he doesn't need to win a title to prove it," Scaloni said.
Guests faking Covid-19 tests to access Copa America final
A 'considerable number' of guests specially invited to watch the Copa America final between Brazil and Argentina have been faking false Covid-19 tests to ensure their entry, organisers the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) said on Saturday.
"These people will not be allowed into the stadium. The controls to ensure access to the final of the Copa America will be extremely rigorous."
....and the Argentina XI: Emi Martínez; Montiel, Romero, Otamendi, Acuña; Paredes, De Paul, Lo Celso; Messi, Di María & Lautaro Martínez.
Argentina fans in the Maracana stadium with 8,000 spectators permitted for tonight's final.
Uruguay's Esteban Ostojich is the man in the middle for tonight's Copa America final.
Both Argentina and Brazil have been head and shoulders above their rivals in this year’s Copa America and in Neymar and Lionel Messi have the tournament’s two standout performers.
Argentina are unbeaten in 19 games going into the showdown at the Maracana stadium, while Brazil, the hosts and reigning champions, have not lost since Argentina beat them in a November 2019 friendly.
Brazil are narrow favourites and not just because they are at home and have a slightly better record so far in the tournament. They also have a reputation for beating Argentina in crunch games.
Tonight's kits confirmed
Brazil will be looking to add to their nine triumphs while Argentina have been crowned continental champions on 14 occasions and join level with Uruguay on 15 wins.
Argentina and Brazil will face off in the Maracanã on Saturday in the latest installment of the South American Superclásico or the Scoerclásico de la Americas as it's known on the continent. It will be an opportunity for both Neymar and Leo Messi – in potentially his final Copa with the next tournament not due to be staged until 2024 – to finally add a major international title to their laurels.
The action gets underway at 21:00 (local time), 20:00 (ET) and 02:00 CEST on Sunday, July 11.
Hello and a very warm welcome to our live coverage of the 2021 Copa America final from Rio as Argentina face Brazil