"We need to take this chance and win the Copa whatever way we can” said a confident sounding Leo Messi ahead of Sunday’s Copa America Centenario final. The Barça striker is hoping it’ll be third time lucky after losing finals in 2007 to Brazil and 2015 to the same side the Albiceleste face in the final this year’s special edition in the United States, Chile.
Messi was also in the Argentina squad that hosted the tournament in 2011 but they went out to eventual winners Uruguay on penalties in the quarter finals. After so many disappointments, he hopes this will be the year that things fall into place and he can at last collect his first senior international winner’s medal.
“We have to put the lost finals behind us” he told the media. “And take this as a brand new opportunity … We are very close to what we came here for.”
“We’ve shown throughout the competition that we have a very solid squad. We’ve grown used to playing in finals, so there’s no pressure in that sense.”
“I think it’ll be a tight final, very similar to last year’s” he added, referring to the day that it was his club colleague, Chile goalkeeper and captain Claudio Bravo, who ended up with the oldest international football trophy in his hands.
He concluded by reiterating that “I’d love to be able to change history and become champion for my country.” On Sunday night at the MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, we’ll find out whether he and his team-mates will be able to do just that.