Di Maria, Vidal return for Copa America final
27 June 2016, 09:17
East Rutherford, N.J. — Winger Angel Di Maria returned to Argentina's lineup for the Copa America final against defending champion Chile on Sunday night after recovering from an adductor muscle injury sustained in a group stage match against Panama on June 10.
With Argentina seeking its first major title since 1993 — and its first with Lionel Messi — Argentina coach Gerardo Martino and Chile coach Juan Antonio Pizzi each made two changes.
Di Maria replaced Ezequiel Lavezzi, who broke an elbow Tuesday night in a 4-0 semifinal win over the United States, and Lucas Biglia entered in midfield in place of Augusto Fernandez, who injured a leg in the second half against the U.S.
Midfielder Arturo Vidal returned to Chile's lineup after serving a one-game suspension during the 2-0 semifinal win over Colombia on Wednesday night and fellow midfielder Marcelo Diaz also started. They replaced Pablo Hernandez and Francisco Silva, who missed the semifinal after Pizzi said Silva "suffered an overload" in the quarterfinal against Mexico.
Argentina had Sergio Romero in goal, with Gabriel Mercado at right back, Nicolas Otamendi and Ramiro Funes Mori in central defense and Marcos Rojo at left back. Javier Mascherano was in the midfield with Biglia and Ever Banega, and Messi — a five-time FIFA Player of the Year — headed an attack that included Gonzolo Higuain and Angel Di Maria.
Claudio Bravo was in goal, with Mauricio Isla at right back, Gary Medel and Gonzalo Jara in central defense and Jean Beausejour at left back, Charles Aranguiz was in midfield with Vidal and Marcelo Diaz, and Alexis Sanchez headed the attack with Jose Fuenzalida and Eduardo Vargas.
Heber Lopes of Brazil was the referee.