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Berizzo rues Paraguay’s “lost two points” against Argentina

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Paraguay manager Eduardo Berizzo reckons his team should have beaten Argentina instead of settling for a 1-1 Copa America draw.

Richard Sanchez’s first-half opener appeared to set Paraguay on course for their first Copa America victory against Argentina. However, Lionel Messi’s 57th-minute penalty denied them all three points and one foot into the knockout stages.

Although Berizzo’s men could have scored a second goal only for Argentina goalkeeper Franco Armani to save Derlis Gonzalez’s spot-kick.

The result leaves Paraguay in second-place in Group B and in need of a win against leaders Colombia to guarantee a spot in the quarter-finals.

“I would not like to look pretentious, but I think we lost two points,” said Berizzo, according to Yahoo.

“We had the best chances, we did not get much against us, and the development of the game, even when Argentina had more possession, was right, it was solid. They lacked a threat against us.

“It makes me think that, if we converted that penalty or scored on the counter-attack, we would have deserved the victory.”

Although the Argentina-native was pleased with the way Paraguay neutralised the threat of Messi.

“We closed the avenues to Messi’s position, we did not let him run and neutralised him,” continued Berizzo.

“We worked well to surround him and stopped his team-mates’ passes, so there were not many dangerous situations.

“Given the quality of the opponent, this was the best match since I became coach, not only for surrounding Messi but for the personality of our play, taking ownership, believing in the plan.

“We had a great display until the end against Argentina, who demand a high defensive effort.”

BELO HORIZONTE, BRAZIL – JUNE 19: Lionel Messi of Argentina shakes hands with Paraguay’s Gustavo Gomez.