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 By Tim Vickery

Argentina thrash Paraguay to set up a fascinating final vs. Chile

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno reacts to Argentina's convincing 6-1 win over Paraguay, now advancing for their first Copa America final since 1993.
ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno completely disagrees with the SPI which currently favours Chile with a 63 percent chance of winning Copa America over Argentina.

CONCEPCION, Chile -- When Lucas Barrios lashed home with his left foot to score for Paraguay five minutes before halftime, the thought occurred that this semifinal versus Argentina might follow the same script as the rousing group match between the same sides a little more than two weeks ago.

In La Serena, Argentina had opened up a two-goal lead before Paraguay, who had at one stage seemed down and out, came roaring back to snatch a heroic draw. In Concepcion, once again Argentina went 2-0 up. Surely,...

Lionel Messi inspires Argentina vs. Paraguay and into Copa America final

Argentina captain Lionel Messi was delighted with his side's display as they destroyed Paraguay 6-1 to advance to the Copa America final.
ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno reacts to Argentina's convincing 6-1 win over Paraguay, now advancing for their first Copa America final since 1993.
The ESPN FC crew discuss Argentina's complete performance against Paraguay, led by Angel Di Maria's two goals and assist.

CONCEPCION, Chile -- Lionel Messi has not scored from open play for Argentina in a competitive game in more than a year. That's 945 minutes, since his second goal against Nigeria back in the final group game of the World Cup.

What's more, if you include friendlies but discount the two goals he scored in a 7-0 pummeling of Hong Kong -- ranked 164 by FIFA -- in October of last year, then the streak is even longer, surpassing 1,200 minutes. That's more than 13 games, more than a third of a club season.

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That...

Messi guides Argentina to dominating victory over Paraguay

Lionel Messi has said he is excited to play in his third national team final, but insisted it will be very difficult.
ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno reacts to Argentina's convincing 6-1 win over Paraguay, now advancing for their first Copa America final since 1993.

CONCEPCION, Chile -- Three observations from Argentina's comprehensive 6-1 victory over Paraguay in the Copa America semifinals.

1. Argentina deliver a performance for the ages

It was a perfect performance that this Argentina generation had waited a decade for, and it means they are now on the brink of ending a 22-year trophy drought.

That all may come together in glorious fashion in Saturday's Copa America final, just as Gerardo Martino's side so breathtakingly came together here. Argentina...

Chile advance to Copa America final thanks to Eduardo Vargas' fine brace

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno breaks down Chile's 2-1 win over 10-man Peru in the Copa America semifinals and now advance to the final for the first time since 1987.

SANTIAGO, Chile -- Three thoughts on Chile and Peru's Copa America semifinal, which the hosts won 2-1 thanks to two goals by Eduardo Vargas.

Chile will now face the winner of Tuesday's semifinal between Paraguay and Argentina.

1. Chile win, but debate will rage

Chile stride on, although with a stumble, and one brilliant strike.

At the very least, there was absolutely no doubt about Eduardo Vargas's wondrous winner.

The striker's sensational 65th-minute, long-range goal gave the 2015 Copa America...

Gio dos Santos and Javier Hernandez inspire Mexico after dreadful first half

Mexico came back from behind after Javier Hernandez equaled the lead in second half, as Mexico played to a 2-2 draw against Costa Rica in Orlando.

A loss for Mexico appeared likely after the first 45 minutes, as Costa Rica easily controlled possession and had plenty of space to roam in the middle of the pitch. With El Tri's defense looking particularly vulnerable, los Ticos had no trouble collecting two goals in the opening half.

After halftime, Mexico manager Miguel Herrera's change to a 4-4-2 formation had immediate results for the squad, which scored twice early in the second half and was by far the better side in the latter stages of the...

Paraguay knock Brazil out of Copa America on penalties again

Just as they did at the same stage of the 2011 Copa America, Paraguay beat Brazil on penalties.

CONCEPCION, Chile -- Three thoughts on Brazil and Paraguay's Copa America quarterfinal, which Paraguay won 4-3 on penalties after the two sides drew 1-1.

Paraguay will now face Argentina in Tuesday's semifinal.

1. Brazil pay the penalty versus Paraguay again

History repeats itself after another reprehensible Brazil campaign. Paraguay knocked the five-time world champions out in a quarterfinal penalty shootout for the second Copa America in a row, while the Brazilians bowed out in embarrassingly...