Lionel Messi gave Paulo Dybala lucky red ribbon before his first competitive Argentina goal

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Argentina's 2019 Copa America campaign will go down as another disappointment. 

The history books may not show the narrative which Lionel Messi has been perpetuating, one of refereeing bias and poor decisions. 

All that will be recorded is that a squad which boasts so much attacking talent failed to reach the final.

The Albiceleste earned bronze after beating Chile 2-1 in the third-place play-off. 

It has not been an enjoyable tournament for an exceptionally disgruntled Messi, but it has had its moments of joy for his teammates. 

That's particularly true of Paulo Dybala, who scored his first competitive goal for his country on Saturday night. 

It's remarkable that it has taken the 25-year-old, whose current market value is around €85million, per Transfermarkt, so long to break his duck. 

The forward has scored 57 Serie A goals for Juventus since 2015, though the most recent season was not his finest as he adapted to the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo leading the Bianconeri line. 

It was becoming a matter of urgency that, for psychological reasons at least, he finally found the back of the net in a competitive game for Argentina. 

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Finally, that hoodoo has been broken, thanks in part to the kindness of Messi. 

Dybala told reporters after the game: 

"Messi gave me the red ribbon before the game to give me luck and I ended up scoring my first competitive goal for Argentina, so it worked."

The ribbon he refers to is one which Messi was given by a reporter, who passed on the lucky charm from his mother, last year. Take a look at the story behind that below: 

It worked for Messi at the World Cup when he scored against Nigeria and later for Barcelona ally  Philippe Coutinho, who slotted away a penalty after his teammate had lent him the keepsake. 

Fantastic though it was to see the 32-year-old displaying such impressive leadership - especially as it will put to bed once and for all rumours about his relationship with Dybala - it's a pity his own role against Chile will be remembered for his sending off. 

The forward was dismissed on the back of a bizarre altercation with Gary Medel, both players feeling the scrap only warranted a yellow card apiece. 

By that point, Argentina were already 2-0 up thanks to Sergio Aguero's opener and Dybala's momentous strike. 

Should Messi keep playing for Argentina? Have your say in the comments. 

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