Paraguay draw frustrating - Messi

Lionel Messi is struggling to comprehend how Argentina are in danger of Copa America group-stage elimination as they prepare to face Qatar in a crucial clash on Sunday.

Richard Sanchez put Paraguay ahead after 37 minutes in Belo Horizonte when he lashed home a cross from Miguel Almiron.

Both teams endured disappointing starts to the continental showpiece, with Paraguay letting a two-goal lead slip in their 2-2 draw against Qatar, while Argentina were abject in a 2-0 loss to Colombia.

Exiting the Copa America at such an early stage would be a disaster for Argentina and would likely see Messi retire from worldwide football.

The draw followed their opening defeat by Colombia on Saturday.

The forward admitted he could have continued if Scaloni had not replaced him with Angel Di Maria. For Argentina vs Paraguay, Copa America 2019 live streaming scroll below.

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Asian champion Qatar, one of the two non-South American teams invited, improved in the second period but just as the game looked destined to finish goalless, Zapata gave Colombia all three points. Messi and Sergio Aguero are likely to play with Lautaro Martinez or Paulo Dybala, who has played zero minutes at the Copa America.

They climbed back from a 2-0 deficit against Paraguay, and lost to Colombia to a goal scored minutes before the final whistle.

Qatar is led by Spanish coach Felix Sanchez, who knows Messi from his days at Barcelona, and has delivered two impressive performances.

Yet Argentina enjoyed a third slice of good fortune as Armani came to the rescue by punching Gonzalez's spot-kick away, and the River Plate goalkeeper also saved a later free kick from Matias Rojas.

"We will try to compete against a great team with the best player in the world".

"I see the team convinced that we will win the next match", he told reporters after the game. The Argentine team hasn't showed any kind of form remotely close to their form of the glory days and if they continue their tentative run of play, it would be hard for Argentina to proceed ahead. "Nowadays you don't win because of the shirt anymore, and we have to do things well to get the three points".

  • Lawrence Cooper