07-4-2024, 8:41 PM

Argentina defeats Ecuador on penalties to advance to Copa America semifinals

Argentina vs. Ecuador - Video Screenshot

Argentina advanced to the Copa America semifinals on Thursday, defeating Ecuador 4-2 on penalties after regulation time ended in a 1-1 draw. The winning team's goalie, Emi Martinez, made two saves in the shootout.

In the 35th minute, Lisandro Martinez headed home the captain's corner kick after Alexis Mac Allister had flicked it on, giving Argentina a 1-0 lead. Lionel Messi had earlier allayed fears over a hamstring injury.

Before Kevin Rodriguez scored a stoppage-time equalizer to force a shootout, Ecuador's captain Enner Valencia struck the post from the penalty spot. Except for the championship game, Copa America knockout games do not feature extra time.

Messi missed the crossbar on Argentina's opening attempt in the shootout, but Martinez stopped Ecuador's first two penalties kick attempts before Nicolas Otamendi converted the game-winning penalty to secure a semifinal berth. Argentina will play Canada or Venezuela next.

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