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This June 14 starts a new edition of the oldest selections tournament in the world. What can we expect from this contest?
The 46th edition of the Copa América kicks off this Friday, June 14 in Brazil with the host team taking on Bolivia in the opening match. The oldest tournament of the world will miss Neymar, injured a few days ago in the friendly game of 'La Canarinha' against Qatar, but will have players like Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero, Edinson Cavani, Radamel Falcao, and Arturo Vidal.
The event will find several selections starting processes, or with quite new cycles like Argentina with Lionel Scaloni, Chile with Reinaldo Rueda, Colombia with Carlos Queiroz, Paraguay with Eduardo 'Toto' Berizzo, Ecuador with Hernán Dario 'Bolillo' Gómez, and Bolivia with Eduardo Villegas In turn, those who arrive more consolidated or should at least arrive in these conditions are Brazil with Tite, Uruguay with Oscar Washington Tabarez, Peru with Ricardo Gareca and Venezuela with Rafael Dudamel.
The Sports Nation reported that Ronaldinho presented what will be the official tournament ball. The name of the same is "Rabisco", which in Portuguese means "garabato", which is inspired by street art, and which will be filmed on Brazilian stages for 23 days.
The Nation Sports makes a review by the three groups that conform the competition. That randomness determined that Brazil, share group A, in addition to the Highlanders with Venezuela and Peru. Here, the hosts seem to have a clear path to advance to the quarterfinals as first, beyond the absence of Neymar, but with the same base that played the World Cup in Russia 2018 (William, Coutinho, Renato Augusto, Filipe Luis, Gabriel Jesus) while Incas and Vinotintos would fight the second place leaving the people of the Altiplano as a possible surprise.
In group B, for many the most interesting, it places us two powers of the region such as Argentina and Colombia, which will be measured on the first day. The albicelestes, however, with Messi and Agüero as banners, and beyond the transformation of the squad headed by Scaloni, seem to have enough to advance phase, but we will have to see if ahead of or behind Colombia.
A Colombia that is also mutating with Carlos Queiroz but that arrives with players in a great levels like Duván Zapata of Atalanta, Wilmar Barrios del Zenit of Russia, or Edwin Cardona of Pachuca de México. In addition to the emblematic Radamel Falcao and James Rodriguez. Paraguay, with a young base and a budding coach, and Qatar, Asian champion who will not make it easy, can aspire to qualify as third parties.
Finally, group C will have the participation of Uruguay, Ecuador, Japan, and Chile. The 'charrúas' can finally count on Luis Suárez after his knee operation a month ago, and that's a great incentive to form the fearsome duo with Edinson Cavani. The tradition, the competitive gene, the experience of their figures (including Diego Godín) always give them as favorites in this tournament.
Then, the fight for the second position between Chile (current two-time champion) but come to less in recent years and with a generational change that does not seem so talented is not clear. An Alexis Sánchez who had his worst season in Europe, Gary Medel and Arturo Vidal will be the bastions again.
Ecuador with 'Bolillo' Gómez is in search of a style of play and with referents such as Enner and Antonio Valencia who seem to have left behind the highlights of their career. Japan, assists with a B team, composed mainly of sub23 players, who will take this tournament in preparation for their main objective: the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
Favorites and stadiums
For Marca, the matter is very clear. Only the Argentina of Messi, the Colombia of Queiroz, the always reliable Uruguay or the current two-time champion Chile, a two-time champion, even if it is low hours, seem to be the only candidates to avoid the Brazilian triumph at home.
Of course, it will be an event with an exotic touch thanks to the participation of Qatar and Japan, Asian guests, while the traditional participants Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Peru, will try to surprise.
Similarly, add the plethora of stars that will participate in the forty-sixth edition of the contest: Messi, Suárez, James, Alexis, Paolo Guerrero, Miguel Almirón, Valencia, Salomón Rondón, or the same Nakajima by the Nipponese.
The six Brazilian temples of the Copa America, home to the 26 matches, are the Fonte Nova Arena in Salvador de Bahia, the Morumbi in Sao Paulo where the opening match will be played, Arena Do Gremio, Mineirao de Belo Horizonte, Arena Corinthians and the imposing and mythical Maracanã de Rio de Janeiro, venue of the meeting for the title.
Recamier made an interesting review of the history of the tournament, reiterating that it is the oldest international tournament in the history of football, since in this 2019 up to 104 years, after starting in 1916.
For example, Brazil has hosted the event five times, the first time being 1919. The only selection outside the continent that had participated before was Japan, in the edition of Argentina 2011, but this year it repeats. Now Qatar is added. The other guests had been from Concacaf, another confederation, but within the same continent.
Although it is hard to believe, those considered by many as the two best players in history, Pele and Diego Armando Maradona, never won an America's Cup. In the same way, Uruguay, Argentina, and Brazil are the most awarded selections of this contest with 15, 14 and 8 titles respectively.
In the history of the Copa América, and since the format of 12 countries exists, Colombia has the best campaign for a champion team. In its local edition in 2001, played and won 6 games, scored 11 goals in favor and did not receive any, leaving his fence unbeaten. The top scorers of this Cup in history are the Brazilian Zizinho and the Argentine Norberto Méndez, both with 17 goals scored.
LatinAmerican Post | Onofre Zambrano
Translated from "Todo lo que debes saber sobre los favoritos de la Copa América Brasil 2019"