- Argentina won the Copa America three years ago without losing a single game
- Lionel Messi won the Copa America 2021 Golden Boot and scored four goals
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Lionel Messi and Argentina’s Copa America title defense will begin with group matches against Peru, Chile, and either Canada or Trinidad and Tobago.
Canada plays Trinidad and Tobago in a CONCACAF play-in match on March 23.
Argentina won the latest Copa America in 2021, besting Brazil in the final 1-0 on a first-half goal from Angel Di Maria. It was the 15th Copa America triumph for the Argentine.
Argentina will play in the first match of the tournament, which takes exclusively in the United States, of next summer’s Copa America against its North American foe on June 20 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
Messi and the rest of the Argentine squad will then face Chile on June 25 in East Rutherford, New Jersey at MetLife Stadium.
Lionel Messi, defending Copa America champions Argentina look to repeat that feat next year
Messi and Argentina will face Peru, Chile, and a North American team in the group stage
Argentina’s Group A finale will be against Peru on June 29 in the Miami area at Hard Rock Stadium, where the tournament’s final will also take place.
Should Argentina win Group A, which it will be favored to do, it would have a quarterfinal matchup against Group B’s runner-up, on July 4 at NRG Stadium in Houston.
Whether Argentina advances as the group winner or runner-up, a semifinal matchup would take place at MetLife Stadium in the greater New York City area as well.
Argentina’s road to the final would avoid rivals Brazil and Uruguay, as well as the host nation, the United States.
Group B does consist of Mexico, Ecuador, Venezuela, and Jamaica.
Argentina hasn’t won back-to-back Copa America titles since 1991 and 1993.
The last repeat Copa America champions were Chile, who hosted the 2015 edition and won the special 2016 Copa America in the United States, which was the only other time the event was hosted outside South America.
Messi will turn 37 a day before Argentina’s second group-stage game and could signal that his last two major international events could both take place in North America.
Argentina haven’t won back-to-back Copa America titles since triumphs in 1991 and 1993
After winning the 2022 World Cup, Argentina will be expected to do the same next summer
The Inter Miami star is expected to try to stay in contention for Argentina through the 2026 World Cup, which will be hosted by the United States, Mexico, and Canada.
Uruguay and Argentina are tied with 15 Copa America titles each.
No country from outside South America has ever won Copa America.
Only the 10 CONMEBOL nations competed in the 2021 edition of Copa America, while Japan and Qatar competed in the 2019 tournament. Neither non-CONMEBOL team won a game at the tournament and advanced out of the group stage.
CONMEBOL has invited two guest teams from around the world for every South American-based edition since 1993.