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England set to face Lionel Messi for first time… but only if they beat Spain

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ENGLAND could finally get a first chance to take on Lionel Messi’s Argentina if they can lift the Euro 2024 crown on Sunday.

Uefa and their South American counterparts joined forces to relaunch the “Conmebol–Uefa Cup of Champions” in 2020.

Lionel Messi could finally face England if they win Euro 2024 on Sunday

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Lionel Messi could finally face England if they win Euro 2024 on SundayCredit: Getty
Jude Bellingham and the Three Lions will face the Copa America winners if they beat Spain

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Jude Bellingham and the Three Lions will face the Copa America winners if they beat SpainCredit: Getty

It was a replacement for the old Artemio Franchi Cup, created in 1985 when France beat Uruguay and then played just once more, when Argentina ousted Denmark on penalties in Mar del Plata, before being abolished.

But as part of a 10-year “Memorandum of Understanding” between the two confederations, it was agreed that the champions of both continents would meet.

In 2022, Argentina thrashed Italy 3-0 at Wembley in what was branded the “Finalissima”.

A year later, England’s triumphant Lionesses saw off Brazil on penalties, also under the Arch.

Uefa insiders confirmed that it is planned that the Euro 2024 winners will meet the Copa America title holders next summer.

That match will be played in Europe, rather than South America, although the venue has not been confirmed.

And if England do beat Spain, they would face either Argentina or Colombia, who meet in Miami in the early hours of Monday morning.

If the 2022 World Cup winners are victorious, that could finally mean England taking on Messi, who was an unused member of the Argentine squad when the sides last met, in Geneva in 2005.

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England vs Spain record

England have played Spain 27 times in total – here is a look at every result…

  • May 1929, Spain 4-3 England – International Friendly (L)
  • December 1931, England 7-1 Spain – International Friendly (W)
  • July 1950, Spain 1-0 England – World Cup (L)
  • May 1955, Spain 1-1 England – International Friendly (D)
  • November 1955, England 4-1 Spain – International Friendly (W)
  • May 1960, Spain 3-0 England – International Friendly (L)
  • October 1960, England 4-2 Spain – International Friendly (W)
  • December 1965, Spain 0-2 England – International Friendly (W)
  • May 1967, England 2-0 Spain – International Friendly (W)
  • April 1968, England 1-0 Spain – European Championship (W)
  • May 1968, Spain 1-2 England – European Championship (W)
  • March 1980, Spain 0-2 England – International Friendly (W)
  • June 1980, England 2-1 Spain – European Championship (W)
  • March 1981, England 1-2 Spain – International Friendly (L)
  • July 1982, Spain 0-0 England – World Cup (D)
  • February 1987, Spain 2-4 England – International Friendly (W)
  • September 1992, Spain 1-0 England – International Friendly (L)
  • June 1996, England 0(4)-(2)0 Spain – European Championship (W)
  • February 2001, England 3-0 Spain – International Friendly (W)
  • November 2004, Spain 1-0 England – International Friendly (L)
  • February 2007, England 0-1 Spain – International Friendly (L)
  • February 2009, Spain 2-0 England – International Friendly (L)
  • November 2011, England 1-0 Spain – International Friendly (W)
  • November 2015, Spain 2-0 England – International Friendly (L)
  • November 2016, England 2-2 Spain – International Friendly (D)
  • September 2018, England 1-2 Spain – Nations League (L)
  • October 2018, Spain 2-3 England – Nations League (W)

Overall, England have won 14, drawn three and lost 10 matches against Spain.

It is unclear if Messi will continue to play for his nation after the Copa America but if he does want to stay on until the 2026 World Cup he would be expected to play in the next Finalissima.

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