Stats Show Lionel Messi Outshining Neymar At Copa America

Lionel Messi

Getty Lionel Messi celebrates at the Copa America

Lionel Messi and former Barcelona teammate Neymar will face off in the Copa America final on Saturday as Argentina take on Brazil in the showpiece event at the Maracana Stadium.

Both players remain instrumental to their national teams but it’s Messi who, statistically speaking, has been the more impressive of the two superstars so far at the tournament ahead of the final.

Messi is the tournament’s top scorer with 4 goals from 6 games and also tops the assists charts with 5. Neymar has only scored twice, against Venezuela and Peru, and also lags behind when it comes to assists with 3.

The Argentina captain has also created more chances (20 as opposed to Neymar’s 17) and has completed more take-ons than the Brazilian (33 against 26). The only key category where Neymar does come out on top is fouls won. The PSG forward is 3 ahead of Messi on 25.

Squawka Football neatly summed up the duo’s stats so far.

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More Records In Sight For Messi

Messi has already increased his record collection at the Copa America, becoming Argentina’s most capped player, but could add a few more on Saturday night against Brazil.

The 34-year-old will match Brazil legend Pele’s record for international goals with his next strike for Argentina. Messi is currently on 76 and just one behind matching Pele’s mark.

Messi will also match the record for the most appearances at the Copa America on Saturday. The Argentina captain will feature for the 34th time and match the record held by Chile’s Sergio Livingstone.

The forward is also close to matching the record for the most goals at the tournament. Messi is currently on 13 and just four behind all-time goalscorers Zizinho and Norberto Mendez’s on 17.

Messi Desperate For Success

Messi has already admitted he’s desperate to lift the trophy on Saturday. The Argentine has won 35 titles in a Barcelona shirt but is still yet to taste success for the national team in his phenomenal career.

The forward explained after Argentina’s semi-final win over Colombia on penalties exactly how much it would mean to him to lift the trophy and also discussed the prospect of facing Neymar, as reported by Mundo Albiceleste.

“We are both in the final, I Know Ney said it because on one side we are friends and he wants me to be there too. It will surely be very close and complicated. We are very excited, we reached the first goal which was to get to the final, to play all the matches and now we are even more excited than ever as we go for this Copa,” he said. “We are very excited, happy, personally, I want to play one more, what I want most is to win a title with the national team but beyond lifting the cup or not, I think I enjoyed these difficult 45 days without seeing my family.”

Brazil will be favorites for victory against Argentina. The defending champions have home advantage, are in great form and have also won the last five Copa America finals they have played.

READ NEXT: Messi Ruthlessly Mocks Former Barcelona Teammate [WATCH]

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