RIO DE JANEIRO, June 16 (Xinhua) — Chile forward Eduardo Vargas has expressed a desire to be the Copa America’s all-time leading scorer as he nears the record held by Argentine Norberto Mendez and Brazil great Zizinho.
A second-half strike in Chile’s 1-1 draw with Argentina on Monday took Vargas’s overall tally in the world’s oldest international football competition to 13 goals from 19 matches.
He sits equal sixth on the list of Copa America’s most prolific scorers, four goals shy of the mark shared by Mendez and Zizinho.
“For me it is a very important achievement,” Vargas told a news conference on Wednesday. “I’m very, very happy to be among the Copa America’s leading goalscorers and I still have four or five games left, if we advance [in the current tournament in Brazil]. I would like to move into the top five or perhaps be the first.”
Vargas was top scorer in the 2015 and 2016 editions of the Copa America – both of which Chile won – with four and six goals, respectively. The 31-year-old Atletico Mineiro player also netted twice in the 2019 tournament.
Chile’s next Copa America assignment will be a clash against Bolivia in Cuiaba on Friday – a repeat of a World Cup qualifier earlier this month that ended in a 1-1 draw.
“I think everyone knows that we had many opportunities in the last game against Bolivia,” Vargas said. “The goals didn’t flow. But I think we could easily have scored five times due to the number of chances we had.
“This game will be different because they lost their last match against Paraguay and they have players infected with the coronavirus,” he added.