Messi helps Argentina beat Guatemala in Copa América warmup


Scaloni confirms Lionel Messi will start in Copa America warmup fixture

Argentina manager Lionel Scaloni says Lionel Messi will start their Copa America warmup game against Guatemala.

Doubles from Lionel Messi and Lautaro Martinez earned Argentina a 4-1 victory against Guatemala in their final Copa América warmup on Friday.

Guatemala grabbed an early lead with their first-ever strike against the World Cup winners courtesy of Lisandro Martinez's own goal following a set-piece situation just four minutes into the game.

Messi equalised eight minutes later as keeper Nicholas Hagen cleared the ball straight into the path of the Argentine captain, who scored into an empty net.

Lionel Messi celebrates scoring against Guatemala.
Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

Lautaro Martinez, this season's Serie A top scorer, put Argentina ahead with a penalty kick in the 39th minute before netting his second from a Messi pass after the break.

"We are aiming for the title, we are fighting for everything," Martinez told TyC Sports.

"We said it when the Copa América ended in 2021 and when the World Cup ended, we will try to prepare ourselves to start the Copa América in the best possible way and hopefully it will be all joy."

The 36-year-old Messi got his double in the 77th minute after a superb pass from substitute Angel Di Maria to seal the win for the Copa América reigning champions.

Copa América runs from June 20 to July 14 in the United States. Lionel Scaloni's side kick off their Group A campaign against Canada on Thursday before facing Chile on June 25 and Peru four days later.