Argentina Ends Team USA's Remarkable 'Copa America' Run : The Two-Way In front of more than 70,000 fans in Houston, Texas, the U.S. men's national soccer team was quite simply outmatched by the best team in the world.
NPR logo Argentina Ends Team USA's Remarkable 'Copa America' Run

Argentina Ends Team USA's Remarkable 'Copa America' Run

Argentina's Lionel Messi (bottom right) celebrates after scoring on a free kick against Team USA on Tuesday during their Copa America Centenario semifinal football match in Houston. Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images

Argentina's Lionel Messi (bottom right) celebrates after scoring on a free kick against Team USA on Tuesday during their Copa America Centenario semifinal football match in Houston.

Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images

Team USA's remarkable run in the Copa America came to a screeching halt on Tuesday during a semi-final match against Argentina.

In front of more than 70,000 fans in Houston, Texas, the U.S. men's national soccer team was quite simply outmatched by the best team in the world.

As Ives Galarcep of sbisoccer.com put it, Argentina looked every bit like a No. 1 team, while the "USA looked like a team nowhere near ready for the challenge."

The game held great hopes for the United States. It was a chance to show its mettle on the kind of stage — and against a world-class rival — that it's rarely seen.

Ultimately, Argentina proved overpowering. Even before the first half was over, Lionel Messi, arguably the best player the game has ever seen, racked up an assist and, perhaps a metaphor for the entire match, he placed a free kick so perfectly that all Team USA could do was watch in awe.

Argentina won 4-0. They move on to the finals. The U.S. will play for third place. We live blogged the game, so if you want a play-by-play keep scrolling.