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Lionel Messi masterclass sees Argentina past Honduras

Lionel Messi masterclass sees Argentina past Honduras

Lionel Messi produced another stunning performance to help Argentina to a 3-0 victory over Honduras in their World Cup warm-up friendly in Miami this morning.

The in-form Paris Saint-Germain forward scored twice and played a major role in his side’s opener as Lionel Scaloni‘s side cruised to a comfortable win in Florida.

It was a fitting way for Messi to mark his 163rd international appearance – a tally which takes him into the top 20 most-capped players of all time – while his brace takes him onto 88 goals for his country – one behind Malaysia’s Mokhtar Dahari for third in the all-time list.

The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner has shown signs of his best form again so far this season, directly contributing to 14 goals in 11 games for PSG ahead of the international break.

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β€” @π€π‘π†π„ππ“πˆπƒπ€π“π€ (@Argentidata3) September 24, 2022

That ratio of more than one direct goal involvement per game continued on the international scene courtesy of his double, while his pass in the buildup to the opener on the night was worthy of an assist even if it will not be officially credited as one.

Messi lifted a pinpoint pass over the defence to find Papu Gomez, who then laid the ball across the face of goal for Lautaro Martinez to convert from close range.

The 35-year-old Messi then coolly sent the goalkeeper the wrong way from the penalty spot to double Argentina’s lead on the stroke of half time, before treating the American crowd to another moment of magic.

‘𝐄𝐋 π“π„π‘π‚π„π‘πŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽπŽ 𝐃𝐄 #π€π‘π†π„ππ“πˆππ€, πƒπŽππ‹π„π“π„ 𝐃𝐄 π‹πŽ π‡πˆπ™πŽ π‹πˆπŽππ„π‹ 𝐀𝐍𝐃𝐑𝐄́𝐒 πŒπ„π’π’πˆ π‚π”π‚π‚πˆπ“π“πˆππˆ!πŸ‘ŠπŸΌπŸ€©πŸ”₯ pic.twitter.com/V3b6AwFoHj

β€” Argentina Gol (@BocaJrsGolArg) September 24, 2022

A loose ball broke into his path 25 yards from goal, and Messi did not hesitate before producing an exquisite first-time chip over the stranded keeper for his 16th goal in his last 21 international appearances.

The result extends Argentina’s unbeaten streak to 34 matches stretching more than three years, catapulting them amongst the favourites for glory in Qatar later this year – an achievement which would hand Messi his first World Cup crown.

Scaloni’s side will face Jamaica next week and then have one final scheduled match – against UAE – before getting their World Cup campaign underway against Saudi Arabia, Mexico and Poland in Group C.

ID:495311:1false2false3false:QQ:: from db desktop :LenBod:collect4825:

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