GOIANIA, Brazil (Reuters) – Lionel Messi scored a free kick and served up two assists as Argentina beat Ecuador 3-0 on Saturday and set themselves up for a Copa America semi-final against Colombia.
Messi missed a golden chance in the first half but set up Rodrigo De Paul five minutes before half-time and then did the same for Lautaro Martinez five minutes from the end.
The Barcelona player then got his second free kick of the tournament in stoppage time to round off a scoreline that was more convincing than the performance.
The result means Argentina will face Colombia, who overcame Uruguay on penalties earlier in the day, in the second Copa America semi-final on Tuesday.
Brazil play Peru in the first semi-final 24 hours before.
(Reporting by Andrew Downie; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)