Another final, another defeat for Argentina. This time an awkward and sour one, especially for Lionel Messi, who had a quiet game against the tight-marking Chile defense, and whose family, online gambling news report, was abused by the overwhelmed Chile fans in Estadio Nacional.As the sides were unable to find the back of the nets, the game went to penalties, and Alexis Sanxhez, who missed his spot-kick against Brazil a year ago that saw Chile crashing out from the World Cup in the round of 16, stepped up to score with a half-Panenka. Through that, the ex-Barcelona forward, who led Arsenal’s frontline last season, helped Chile to their first trophy 99 years after La Roja participated in the inaugural edition of the Copa America.
Chile waited 99 years for this, and in the end it came down to Alexis Sanchez, who had to score the decisive penalty in the shootout against Argentina in the 2015 Copa America final. Sanchez went for a Panenka, and though he failed to perform the trick-shot perfectly, he scored anyway as Argentina goalkeeper Sergio Romero threw his body towards the left post.
Gonzalo Higuain and Ever Banega failed to score from 12 yards previously, which meant that Chile won its first ever Copa America title, 99 years after they participated in the first edition of the tournament alongside Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay. Meanwhile Argentina lost another final and it is now 22 years for them without any trophy, as experts of gambling facts might know it.
This wonderful generation that produced players like Lionel Messi, Javier Mascherano or Sergio Aguero might end their careers without any trophies at international level eventually, while fellow Argentinian Jorge Sampaoli was able to command Chile to victory in a stadium that was used as a prison at the beginning of Augusto Pinochet’s reign.
Alexis Sanchez scored the winning penalty against Argentina in arguably the most important year of his career. He was amazing in his first year for Arsenal after he left Barcelona, and he was able to capitalize on his good form at the Copa America too, where he was an integral member of the team that delivered the first ever title for host nation Chile.
At Barcelona his main task was to give the ball to Lionel Messi and to win it back before giving it to Messi. However, anyone who follows sports scores might have noticed that in the past few years he emerged as one of the best forwards in the world, transforming from a quick winger, who is very good at pressing to a reliable goal scorer.
Sanchez virtually swapped roles with Luis Suarez, as the Chile international had to move after the Uruguayan world class player was acquired from Liverpool. Sanchez went to the Premier League to lead a team and to become PFA Fans’ Player of the Year, and at the Copa he helped his team with industrious work. After missing a penalty against Brazil in the shootout at the World Cup a year ago, he scored with his spot-kick this time to defeat Argentina.
Though Javier Mascherano and Lionel Messi won everything with Barcelona this season, they lost two finals with Argentina in a year. Last summer at the World Cup in Brazil, they were defeated by Germany in overtime, while this time at the 2015 Copa America, host nation Chile proved to be a better penalty taking team than La Albiceleste.
Argentina is one of the biggest footballing nations, however, the national team has won no trophy in 22 years. Their last success came in 1993 at the Copa America in Ecuador, when they beat Mexico in the final with a brace from Gabriel Batistuta. Since then Brazil won it four times, Uruguay conquered the continent twice, even Colombia and now Chile was able to deliver a title.
Argentina has a generation now that won everything at youth level, with two U-20 World Cup victories and two gold medals at the Olympics between 2004 and 2008, as followers of live sports results might remember, yet fail to win a single trophy when competing with the grown-ups.