Lionel Messi dazzles and delivers for Argentina in Copa América tuneup


When it comes to Lionel Messi, the numbers speak for themselves. Just before the eight-time Ballon d’Or winner scored two goals in Argentina’s 4-1 victory against Guatemala, the multitude of No. 10 Messi jerseys at Commanders Field was truly remarkable.

While some fans wore jerseys representing Messi’s journey from his FC Barcelona days to his current role in MLS with Inter Miami, most donned the iconic blue-and-white stripes of Argentina.

Despite Argentina’s history of World Cup triumphs and legendary players, the overwhelming presence of Messi jerseys at Commanders Field on Friday was undeniable. Although a few supporters sported jerseys of other players like Ángel Di María or Hernán Crespo, the majority proudly displayed “Messi 10” on their backs, showing their unwavering support for the football icon.

This spectacle unfolded as the living legend graced the field in the D.C. area for the first time since 2017. Coach Lionel Scaloni entrusted Messi with a full 90-minute performance in front of a crowd of 51,713 in Landover, following his brief appearance in the previous match against Ecuador. Scaloni’s expectations for Messi in the Copa América tune-up were clear: to continue playing his exceptional brand of soccer, excel on the field, and be a valuable team player.

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