Argentina 2-0 Canada: Player ratings as Lionel Messi and La Albiceleste advance to Copa America 2024 final

  • Argentina defeated Canada 2-0 for the second time at Copa America 2024
  • Lionel Messi scored his first goal of the tournament
  • La Albiceleste will defend their title at Hard Rock Stadium on July 14
Check out Argentina's player ratings after defeating Canada 2-0 in the Copa America 2024 semi-finals.
Check out Argentina's player ratings after defeating Canada 2-0 in the Copa America 2024 semi-finals. / EDUARDO MUNOZ/GettyImages

Argentina comfortably defeated Canada 2-0 in the Copa America 2024 semi-finals, punching their ticket to their second consecutive Copa America final.

Argentina vs Canada opened Copa America 2024, and now, the two Group A teams met again at MetLife Stadium in the tournament's first semi-final. Just last week, La Albiceleste survived a late-game equalizer from Ecuador and a penalty shootout in the quarter-finals while the Reds won a penalty shootout of their own against Venezuela. The winner of the rematch tonight advanced to the final, and the loser settled for a third place match.

How the game unfolded

The match got off to a tentative start with both sides enjoying prolonged spells of possession that led to a few half-chances before Argentina took control of the game. In the 23rd minute, Rodrigo De Paul found himself on the ball in the midfield with ample time and space to pick out a pass to Julian Alvarez, who got in behind Moise Bombito and slotted the ball through Maxime Crepeau's legs to go up 1-0.

The reigning champions took their foot off the gas for the rest of the first half, allowing Canada to push forward, but Jesse Marsch's side lacked the end product in the final third. In the dying minutes of the half, Emiliano Martinez had to make a big save at his near post after Jonathan David got on the end of a long throw from Jacob Shaffelburg.

Just five minutes into the second half, La Albiceleste doubled their lead. Ismael Kone failed to clear the ball in his own box, and his weak effort fell right to the feet of an unmarked Enzo Fernandez 15 yards out. The midfielder's ensuing shot was deflected in by Messi, giving the captain his first goal of the tournament.

The rest of the game unfolded with little fanfare. Argentina never looked in danger of conceding their lead, and Lionel Scaloni even had the luxury of subbing off many of his starters in the second half before the upcoming final on July 14 at Hard Rock Stadium.

Argentina player ratings vs Canada (4-3-3)

Julian Alvarez
Julian Alvarez scored Argentina's opener in the Copa America 2024 semi-final. / Robin Alam/ISI Photos/GettyImages

GK: Emiliano Martínez - 6/10 - Martinez kept his fourth clean sheet of the tournament tonight, only facing two shots on target.

RB: Gonzalo Montiel - 5/10 - Montiel was a surprise addition to Lionel Scaloni's starting XI, and did not make much of a case for himself to start in the final. Jacob Shaffelburg used his speed to exploit the right-back and almost all of Canada's dangerous chances on the counter attack developed along Argentina's right side.

CB: Cristian Romero - 6/10 - Romero once again was a brick wall at the back for La Albiceleste, helping Emiliano Martinez keep another clean sheet.

CB: Lisandro Martínez - 6/10 - Martinez did his job tonight and minimized Canada's chances in the final third.

LB: Nicolas Tagliafico - 5/10 - Tagliafico put in another solid performance tonight, but the left-back was also caught out by Richie Laryea numerous times on the left flank.

CM: Rodrigo De Paul - 6/10 - Once again, De Paul had numerous sloppy giveaways in the midfield, but the Atletico Madrid man made up for it by assisting Argentina's first goal with a perfect pass.

CM: Enzo Fernandez - 6/10 - Fernandez was the deepest of Argentina's three midfielders tonight, often having to drop into the backline to receive the ball to spread the play and kickstart Argentina's attack. The midfielder recorded an assist tonight on Messi's goal.

CM: Alexis Mac Allister - 6/10 - Mac Allister helped Argentina maintain possession and control the game's tempo. He also did well to track back on defense when called upon.

RW: Angel Di Maria - 5/10 - Di Maria got his first start since Argentina's opening match of Copa America 2024. The winger was eager to take players on and link up with Messi, but he lacked the end product in the final third.

ST: Julian Alvarez - 7/10 - Alvarez showed his manager why he should start up top for Argentina, scoring their first goal and effectively pressing Canada's backline to help his team win back possession.

LW: Lionel Messi - 7/10 - Messi looked much more comfortable tonight compared to his performance against Ecuador. The Inter Miami man had plenty of touches, created multiple goalscoring opportunities, and finally found his first goal of the tournament.


SUB: Nicolas Otamendi - 5/10 - Otamendi came on for Tagliafico since the left-back was in danger of missing the final if he received another yellow card.

SUB: Nahuel Molina - 5/10 - Molina was expected to start tonight, but the right-back only played 19 minutes plus stoppage time.

SUB: Lautaro Martinez - 5/10 - After scoring in his first three matches, Martinez has failed to find a goal in the knockout rounds.

SUB: Nicolas Gonzalez - 5/10 - Gonzalez came on for fresh legs in the midfield in the 78th minute, earning a standard five.

SUB: Exequiel Palacios - 5/10 - Palacios made his second appearance of the tournament, giving Alexis Mac Allister a rest for the game's final 12 minutes.


Lionel Scaloni - 7/10 - La Albiceleste's lackluster attack against Ecuador was a distant memory tonight as Lionel Scaloni's squad comfortably beat Canada. The manager reinserted Julian Alvarez into Argentina's starting XI, and his decision paid off just 23 minutes into the game. With Alvarez and Angel Di Maria up top, Lionel Messi also looked much more dangerous, and even scored his first goal of the tournament.

Argentina were expected to beat Canada, though, and therefore Scaloni will not get much praise.