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Last chance for Messi as Argentina, Brazil clash in Rio

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Hundreds of millions of sports fans from around the globe will be glued to their TVs for a Super Sunday of sport this weekend, which is one of the best the world has ever seen.

Four blue riband events span 21 hours, across three sports and three time zones, and while watching every minute will take some dedication and planning, the opportunity is possibly unprecedented.

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First up for British viewers will be the final of the Copa America, a huge tie between the holder's Brazil and Argentina at the Maracana in Rio de Janeiro, which kicks off at 1 am.

The match is intriguing on every level.

Argentina's Lionel Messi and Colombia's Davinson Sanchez vie for the ball during their Conmebol 2021 Copa America football tournament semi-final match at the Mane Garrincha Stadium in Brasilia, Brazil, on July 6, 2021. (Photo by NELSON ALMEIDA / AFP)


Argentina won the last of their 14 Copa America titles in 1993, and face the defending champions Brazil, who have won it nine times, themselves.

The showpiece will also pit Barcelona’s Lionel Messi against his former teammate, Paris Saint Germain’s Neymar. It will be a battle for bragging rights, but also the individuals’ legacies.

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For Argentina, it’s a chance to put an end to a trophy drought and for Messi to finally add the major international trophy - excluding his Olympic gold medal - that has eluded him and that his talent deserves.

Messi, 34, in particular, has been superb in a mediocre tournament, with four goals and five assists in the competition, contributing to nine of Argentina’s 11 goal haul.

The Copa America 2021 final will be played today July 10, at 9 pm local time in Brazil, but due to the time difference, it will take place on Sunday, July 11 at 1 am in the UK.

BBC has the broadcast rights for Copa America in the UK and it will be available to watch live on the BBC Red Button service. It will be available to stream live online through the BBC iPlayer.

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But Brazil remains the favourites and they will be out to complete a Copa América repeat while closing the gap on Argentina and Uruguay, who have 15 titles.

Assuming the superclasico goes all the way to extra time and penalties, committed viewers should have an hour and a half to freshen up and refuel before watching, Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier go to war in Las Vegas.

‘The Notorious’ was too slick for his opponent when the pair first met in 2014, claiming a stunning first-round knockout victory at UFC 178.

However, the tables were turned in their January rematch at UFC 257 in Abu Dhabi, with Poirier displaying a kickboxing masterclass to claim a second-round TKO victory and dash McGregor’s already unlikely hopes of a rematch with the retired Khabib Nurmagomedov.

The pair are due to get down to it in their trilogy bout at UFC 264 at 5 am.

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