Argentina striker Lionel Messi turned out to be his country’s top goalscorer on Tuesday when he scored in the Copa America semi-last against the United States to take his international count to 55 goals.
The five-time world player of the year scored in the 32nd minute of the match in Houston to give Argentina a 2-0 lead.
The goal in his 112th international lifts him above Gabriel Batistuta, who scored 54 goals in 78 diversions for the two-time world champions.
Messi’s objective was a radiant free kick from 25 yards out that gave U.S. goalkeeper Brad Guzan minimal possibility. He took the kick in the wake of being negatively felled as he burst forward by Chris Wondolowski, the American getting a yellow card. It multiplied Argentina’s lead after Ezequiel Lavezzi put them one up in only three minutes.