LIONEL MESSI is into the business end of the Copa America as he looks to win his first international trophy.
Victory over Bolivia saw the Argentines finish top of their group with ten points from a possible 12.
And Argentina now take on Ecuador, who have yet to win a game at the Copa America but did manage to end Brazil's ten-game winning run with a 1-1 draw last time out.
- Kick-off time: 2am BST
- TV channel: BBC Red Button.
- Free live stream: BBC iPlayer/BBC Sport website.
- Kostas Lianos
Argentina have been impressive in this year's Copa America as they are undefeated and won three of their four matches in the group stage, which earned them qualification to the quarter-finals.
A win over Ecuador would see the Albiceleste challenging for their 15th Copa America title, their first since 1993.
Lionel Scaloni's men should be feeling confident as they haven't lost a single match across all competitions since their 2-0 defeat to Brazil in July 2019 during the Copa America semi-finals.
Since then, Lionel Messi and co have been on a tear as they have won a total of 10 out of all their 17 games.
- Kostas Lianos
Argentina and Ecuador's first ever encounter took place way back in the 1963 Copa America when the former won 4-2 in Bolivia.
Since then, the two nations have faced off a total of 26 times across all competitions with the Albiceleste winning a majority of 15 times, compared to the Ecuadorians' mere three victories.
In fact, El Tri haven't been able to beat the Argentines since 2015 when they won 2-0 in a World Cup qualifier thanks to goals by Frickson Erazo and Felipe Caicedo.
However, Argentina should be feeling confident about their semi-final hopes as they won all three of their next encounters, in which they scored a staggering 10 goals and conceded only twice
- Kostas Lianos
GOOD EVENING FROM BRAZIL
Welcome to our live coverage of the Copa America quarter-final clash between Argentina and Ecuador at the Estadio Olimpico Pedro Ludovico.
The Albiceleste made it through to the last four after topping Group A whereas The Tri confirmed their fourth-placed finish in group B with an impressive draw against hosts Brazil.
Argentina manager Lionel Scaloni is not dealing with any injury problems or suspensions heading to this risky encounter against the Ecuadorians.
On the contrary, Scaloni's captain and star man Lionel Messi is in brilliant form and recently made history by becoming the national team's most capped player of all time.
Messi is expected to lead the line with Manchester City record goalscorer, and recent Barcelona signing, Sergio Aguero but the likes of Inter Milan star Lautaro Martinez and Sevilla ace Papu Gomez also make a strong case for the starting line-up.
Aguero's former City team-mate Nicolas Otamendi could also return in Scaloni's defence whereas Tottenham midfielder Giovani Lo Celso should also have high hopes.
Ecuador manager Gustavo Alfaro, on the other hand, is also blessed with a fully fit squad and is set to give former West Ham ace, and current Fenerbahce striker, Enner Valencia another start.
Valencia hasn't scored in the Copa America yet but is expected to get some support from Ayrton Preciado, who has netted two of the team's five goals in the competition.
Alfaro is also likely to give the nod to Brighton prospect Moises Caicedo in midfield for this important clash against Argentina
Source: Read Full Article