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Argentina continue to punch below their weight as Chile lift the Copa America on penalties

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The Chile team celebrate winning the 2015 edition of the Copa America after beating Argentina 4-1 in the penalty shootout after regulation time ended at 0-0

Perennial underachievers Argentina gave the world another reason to give them such a dubious tag as they succumbed to defeat in the final of the Copa America against Chile to miss out on yet another glorious opportunity to win a major international competition. Lionel Messi and company played out a goalless draw with the host nation over a period of 120 minutes before the ensuing penalty shootout managed to end the matter in favour of Chile and not the two time World Cup winners.

The dispiriting defeat was La Albiceleste’s second loss in the final of a major competition in two years. With the memories of last year’s World Cup final defeat at the hands of Germany still fresh in the minds of the Argentinean players and fans, what their nation needed was a Copa America success to ease the pain of last year, but such is the law of life, what you need is not necessarily what you always end up getting.

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Alexis Sanchez celebrates after scoring the winning penalty that crowned Chile as the winners of the Copa America

For those of you who could not manage to make time to see the match let me tell you, you missed a great game of football. It may have been goalless, but the tie was full of end to end action that was played out at a great speed. The game got off to a frenetic start as both sides had chances to break the deadlock. Chile’s Eduardo Vargas and Arturo Vidal both had attempts on the Argentine goal. The first clear cut chance of the game though fell to Manchester City forward Sergio Aguero who was on the end of an accurate free kick from one of his teammates. The ensuing header though was saved by Claudio Bravo who was kept busy all through the night.

The game carried on in this manner till the end of extra time with both teams landing punches on one another but failing to make a telling blow. The tie then went to penalties and there is no doubt that the deafening home support that the team in Red got was a huge factor in this part of the game. Every single Chilean penalty taker managed to hit the back of the net while only one of their Argentine counterparts were able to do the same.

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Lionel Messi hit the back of the net but not in a way that you would expect during his country’s tie against Chile in the Final of the Copa America

Finally, as Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez stepped up to the spot to take the final penalty kick, the extreme levels of confidence that was flowing through the entire La Roja squad was showcased in one singular act of exuberance that depreciated the frugal attempts that Argentina put up. Sanchez managed to win the Copa America for Chile with an exquisitely finished Panenka penalty that managed to send the entire stadium and surely the entire country into raucous celebrations.

With that sublime touch of class, host nation Chile ended their 99 year Copa America drought while Argentina had to make do with another runners-up medal. The game crowned Chile as not only the champions of the continental tournament but also as a real superpower in the world of football while on the other hand Argentina were pushed even deeper into the list of underachievers.

 

 

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