Messi worries Argentina with back injury in 1-0 win


Argentina had a scare when Lionel Messi had to be substituted after incurring a back injury during a 1-0 win over rugged Honduras in a Copa America Centenario warm-up friendly on Friday.

Messi walked off in pain in the 64th minute in San Juan after a clash with Honduras substitute Oliver Morazan 10 days before Argentina’s opening Group D match against Chile.

The team later dispelled fears of a serious injury, saying on their Twitter account that Messi had “suffered bruising on the left of his lower back and ribs.” Gonzalo Higuain scored the only goal for Argentina.

In other warm-up matches for the June 3-26 tournament in the United States, Edinson Cavani struck twice as Uruguay overcame Trinidad and Tobago 3-1 and title holders Chile were upset 2-1 by Jamaica.

Higuain struck after half an hour for Argentina when he received a low cross from the left by Marcos Rojo with his back to goal, turned central defender Maynor Figueroa and chipped left-footed over goalkeeper Donis Escober.

Argentina meet Chile in Santa Clara, California, on June 6 and also face Bolivia and Panama in Group D. Uruguay, without the injured Luis Suarez, came from a goal down after Jomal Williams had put the Trinidadians ahead in the seventh minute in Montevideo.

Cavani equalised with a 26th-minute penalty for a foul by Weslie John on midfielder Nicolas Lodeiro and put Uruguay ahead in the 39th with a shot from the right at a corner.

Matias Vecino, who made his debut against Brazil in a World Cup qualifier in March, increased Uruguay’s lead seven minutes after halftime with his first international goal.

Uruguay face Mexico in Glendale, Arizona on June 5 before also meeting Jamaica and Venezuela in Group C.

Jamaica, who meet Venezuela in Chicago on June 5, stunned a Chile side fielding several reserves in Vina del Mar scoring through Clayton Donaldson and Simon Dawkins before substitute Nicolas Castillo pulled one back late on.

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