Messi: USA and Mexico can win Copa America

Lionel Messi believes hosts the United States and Mexico loom large at the Copa America Centenario.

The United States and Mexico are both contenders to win the Copa America Centenario, according to Argentina captain Lionel Messi.

Messi's Argentina - 14-time champions - are favourites to win the centenary edition of the Copa America in the United States, which kicks off between USA and Colombia in Santa Clara on Friday.

Defending champions Chile, Uruguay - the most successful nation with 15 titles - and Brazil also loom large, but five-time Ballon d'Or winner Messi feels hosts USA and Mexico are in the mix.

"Favourites to win the Cup? The presence of the United States and Mexico will make it close," Messi told Mundo Leo, a program dedicated to the 28-year-old Barcelona star.

"They will be candidates, not only for being local, but by the quality that they have."

Messi, whose Argentina have been drawn in Group D alongside Chile, Panama and Bolivia, added: "It will be different in all senses, with new national teams, new grounds - the stadiums will be excellent."