Lionel Messi was left "very angry" with his miss in Argentina's penalty shoot-out victory over Ecuador in the Copa America quarter-finals.

La Albiceleste progressed to the semi-finals after a dramatic contest at the NRG Stadium in a game where Kevin Rodriguez's injury-time leveller ensured the contest would go the distance in a 1-1 draw after Lisandro Martinez's first-half opener.

The legendary Messi was first to step up for his team but saw a dinked penalty hit the crossbar. Thankfully for the 37-year-old, Emiliano Martinez saved penalties from Angel Mena and Alan Minda as Argentina triumphed 4-2 in the shoot-out.

Speaking after the game, Messi told reporters: "I was very angry, I was convinced that I would take it like that.

"I had spoken with Dibu (Martinez), with (Geronimo) Rulli, I had taken a couple of penalties. I hadn't practised, but I spoke with them.

"I had been taking several cross-shots, in fact the goalkeeper dived for a cross-shot, I tried to touch it and it went high."

Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni was quick to absolve his talisman of any blame when addressing a press conference.

"He played like the rest of the team, we are a team. This is a team, if the team played well, he played well. We have never separated the individual from the collective," he said.

Messi missed Argentina's final group game against Peru through injury but Scaloni insists that did not have an impact on his performance, adding: "Leo had a good game, in the end, they also planned a game or system where when we had the ball, two defenders came to attack, so, this is a chess game. He has had seven days away, we didn't notice the inactivity mentioned in the question."

Martinez was named Player of the Match and has now won all four of the shoot-outs he has been involved in with Argentina. The Aston Villa goalkeeper is adamant there is no luck involved with that statistic.

"I work for that, I throw myself 500 times a day in training," Martinez said.

"I try to be at my best level for the national team because the country deserves it, the people who spend their money to come and watch us."