Ezequiel Lavezzi will miss the Copa America final, after sustaining a bizarre injury during Argentina’s 4-0 semi-final win against the United States in Houston.
The forward broke his left elbow after colliding with advertising hoardings.
Back pedalling at full speed, trying to prevent the ball sailing out of play, Lavezzi jumped in an attempt to control the ball on his chest. His legs hit the hoardings, sending him spinning backwards onto his head.
The nasty looking fall happened in the 63rd minute, with Argentina 3-0 up. Players from both sides immediately recognised the seriousness of the accident and rushed to check on Lavezzi, who was clearly in distress.
Argentina manager, Tata Martino, later confirmed the injury would require surgery.
The evening had started better for the Hebei China Fortune player, when he gave his side the lead in the third minute with a well taken header.
Lionel Messi added a second with a brilliant free-kick. The goal was Messi’s 55th for Argentina, taking him past Gabriel Batistuta’s record tally for the Albiceleste.
Gonzalo Higuain netted twice in the second half to complete the scoring and set up a final meeting on Monday with Chile or Colombia, who meet on Wednesday.