Argentina winger Angel di Maria could miss rest of Copa America with thigh injury
- Angel di Maria suffered a thigh injury in Argentina’s 5-0 win over Panama
- Paris Saint Germain winger has a small tear in his adductor
- Di Maria could be back in time for final on June 26 if Argentina reach it
- The winger suffered injuries at his two previous major tournaments
Argentina’s Copa America Centenario hopes have been dealt a big blow with the news that Angel di Maria has a small adductor tear.
The winger picked up the thigh injury in their 5-0 win over Panama and had to be replaced before half-time by Tottenham’s Erik Lamela.
Di Maria is hoping to return before a potential final, should Argentina make it to the New Jersey date on June 26 but even that is unlikely, given these injuries usually take three weeks to recover from. He missed training on Saturday as he took tests on the injury.
Angel di Maria holds his head in his hands as he is treated by physios for an injury against Panama
Di Maria could miss the rest of the Copa America after suffering a small tear in his thigh adductor
The Paris Saint Germain star was Argentina’s best player in the 2-1 win over Chile, scoring the first goal and setting one up for Ever Banega, before also laying on a perfect free-kick for Nicolas Otamendi to head home against Panama.
It continues the player’s run of bad luck at major tournaments. Di Maria tore a thigh muscle during the 2014 World Cup in the Albiceleste’s quarter-final victory against Belgium, before pulling up with a hamstring injury in the Copa America 2015 final against Chile.
In better news for the Copa America favourites, Lionel Messi returned from his back injury on Friday night in Chicago and scored a 19-minute hat-trick.
The Paris Saint Germain winger (right) has also suffered in injuries at his last two international tournaments
The Barcelona forward missed the first match but made a spectacular return to leap to the head of the top scorers chart, level on three with Liverpool and Brazil’s Philippe Coutinho.
His goals helped Argentina seal their qualification from Group D with one game to spare, against Bolivia in Seattle on Tuesday night.
Although not mathematically guaranteed, their position in top spot is virtually assured and they will face one of Mexico or Venezuela in the quarter-finals.
Di Maria (right) starred in Argentina’s win over Chile where he scored to spark emotional celebrations