Watch Lionel Messi tie Argentina's all-time goalscoring record
Nobody in the history of Argentina soccer has scored more goals for the national team than Lionel Messi. The diminutive superstar scored in the Albiceleste's 4-1 win over Venezuela in Saturday's Copa America Centenario quarterfinals, giving him 54 goals in his national team career. That brings him level with Gabriel Batistuta atop Argentina's all-time scoring list.
It's fitting that Messi's record-tying goal came with him coolly flicking his left foot through the ball, with the ball then finding its way between the goalkeeper's legs. That -- if not for his curling left-footed shots from 15 yards to the far post -- might be his signature finish.
Messi became the second Argentine to ever score 50 goals for the national team when he found the back of the net in March and he began Copa America Centenario still at that number. A three-goal showing in a 19-minute cameo appearance against Panama in the group stage put him one goal off of Batistuta's mark and now he's made his way to the top of the goalscoring chart.
With that goal, Messi also took the lead in the Copa America Centenario Golden Boot race. His four goals are one ahead of Clint Dempsey and Philippe Coutinho for the tournament lead.
Messi and Argentina will be back on the pitch on Tuesday when they take on the United States in the semifinals (9 p.m. ET, FS1). Then, he will have a chance not only to put his country in the final, but to become the sole holder of Argentina's all-time scoring record.
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