The duo helped Argentina into a long-awaited title win over Brazil by helping Argentina seal the Copa America final. Barcelona and Argentina superstar Lionel Messi also told Di Maria that he can shine in the final.
A tearful Angel di Maria described an emotional chat he had with Lionel Messi following his performance in the Copa America title game, saying the Barcelona captain thanked him and said it was his final. Di Maria who missed the 2014 World Cup final because of injury and was unable to finish the Copa America finals in both 2015 and 2016 wrote his name into history.
Argentina midway through the first half needed only one goal from Di Maria to win the Copa for his country while starting just twice in the competition. Despite Renan Lodi’s best efforts, Di Maria lobbed Ederson with aplomb when Rodrigo De Paul’s long ball forward missed the Brazilian full-back.
After more than a decade of winning club and individual titles, Argentina’s title was particularly meaningful to Barcelona striker Lionel Messi who won his first-ever major title with his country. At the final whistle, the Argentine players surrounded their captain. It was a Maracanazo for Emiliano Martinez, a significant win at the famed Rio stadium.
“It’s going to be unforgettable,” Di Maria said 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.”