A Sergio Aguero brace helped a rejuvenated Argentina beat Costa Rica 3-0 to reach the quarter-finals of the Copa America on Monday night.
Aguero started in place of Carlos Tevez as Sergio Batista made four changes from the Argentina side that drew with Colombia last Wednesday.
The Atletico Madrid forward scored either side of the interval before Real Madrid's Angel Di Maria wrapped up the victory in the 63rd minute.
The result sends Argentina through to the last eight along with Group A winners Colombia, Chile, Peru and Venezuela.
"This was a real tonic - just what we needed," Chelsea-target Aguero told reporters.
"We played very well and got the goals - but the main thing was we gelled as a team. Now we have to keep it up."
Batista was under enormous pressure to secure victory, with the hosts looking for their first major trophy since 1993. After two draws, a victory in their final match was essential if the hosts were to keep qualification for the next round in their hands. In response ,the Argentina coach brought in Fernando Gago, Di Maria, Aguero and Gonzalo Higuain for Ever Banega, Esteban Cambiasso, Ezeguiel Lavezzi and Carlos Tevez.
He needn't have been too concerned. With Lionel Messi back to his imperious best the Albicelestes could have been three up inside the opening twenty minutes - but Di Maria, Higuain and Aguero were unable to convert their chances.
Spectators at the Estadio Mario Alberto Kempes in Cordoba had to wait until just before half-time for the first goal. Costa Rica goalkeeper Lionel Moreira couldn't keep hold of Gago's long-range effort and Aguero pounced on the rebound.
Messi sent Aguero clear down the inside left channel just after the break to put Argentina two up before Di Maria converted emphatically to seal all three points.
Batista was thrilled with his side's performance, singling out Messi in particular.
"Lionel was brilliant, like the rest of the team," he told reporters. "I'm very happy with the attitude.
"We had a number of opportunities to score goals in the first half."
Where to watch Copa America 2011 live
A full fixture list and schedule for this year's tournament is available here: Calendario Copa America 2-24 July, 2011
The 2011 Copa America tournament began in Buenos Aires on Saturday, with hosts Argentina held to a disappointing draw with Bolivia.
The 43rd tournament runs until 24 July, with the highest placed team (other than Brazil, who qualify as hosts) earning the right to compete for the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup.
With some of the world's finest footballing talent on display, as well as the usual mix of South American flair, outrageous defending and theatrics, there are a number of viewing opportunities available for the casual and hardcore fans.
In the US, the tournament will once again be shown live exclusively on Spanish-language broadcaster Univision, with match highlights and live streaming also available on the company's website.
In the UK, ESPN will show the tournament for the first time, a full list of live fixtures and highlights is available on the channel's website.
In addition, Google YouTube will stream live matches to viewers in over 50 countries at youtube.com/copaamerica (not available in the UK). All matches will be screened live with English commentary including replays and highlights which will be available on demand.