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Record-breaking Messi leads Argentina into Copa America final

Argentina's Lionel Messi and teammates celebrate winning the 2014 World Cup quarter-finals between Argentina and Belgium at the Brasilia national stadium in Brasilia July 5, 2014.  REUTERS/Dominic Ebenbichler (BRAZIL  - Tags: TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY SOCCER SPORT WORLD CUP)      TOPCUP - RTR3X9KJ
Argentina's Lionel Messi and teammates celebrate winning the 2014 World Cup quarter-finals between Argentina and Belgium at the Brasilia national stadium in Brasilia July 5, 2014. REUTERS/Dominic Ebenbichler (BRAZIL - Tags: TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY SOCCER SPORT WORLD CUP) TOPCUP - RTR3X9KJ

London: Lionel Messi became Argentina’s all-time top goal scorer as the two-time world champions hammered past the United States 4-0 to progress through to the Copa America Centenario final at the NRG Stadium in Houston.

Ezequiel Lavezzi put Argentina ahead just three minutes into the game before Messi, the Barcelona talisman, doubled the lead with a stunning free-kick in the 32nd minute of a completely one-sided match.

With that shot, Messi has overtaken Gabriel Batistuta’s record of 54 goals for his country.

Subsequently, striker Gonzalo Higuain struck twice to complete a thumping win over the hosts, in which the USA failed to muster a shot in the match, on or off target, the Guardian reported.

Argentina, who are aiming to claim a first Copa title since 1993, will next face either defending champions Chile or Colombia in the final on Sunday. (ANI)

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