By: Toms Young
With the dust having settled on last year’s FIFA World Cup all eyes now turn to this summer’s Copa America in Chile with many teams vying for the coveted CONMEBOL title. The trophy could end up accompany any of a number of teams on their trips home but here are the key contenders;
The powerhouse nation fought their way to last year’s World Cup final before succumbing 1-0 to Germany in extra time, and they have started this tournament in unbeaten fashion to sit top of Group B. A 1-0 win over Uruguay along with a 2-2 draw with Paraguay sees them in pole position before their final group game against Jamaica.
After bowing out of the World Cup semi finals in emphatic, style losing 7-1 to Germany in front of their own fans, Dunga’s men will be eager to put that behind them by clinching their third Copa America in 11 years.
They’ve got off to an indifferent start beating Peru 2-1 in their opening game before going down 1-0 against Colombia. If they can overcome group leaders Venezuela in their final group outing on Sunday they’ll secure a spot in the knock-out stages.
The host nation opened the tournament with a 2-0 win over Ecuador and shared a six-goal thriller with Mexico to lead Group A with four points, level with Bolivia. Jorge Sampaoli’s side made it to the World Cup Round of 16 last year but were knocked-out on penalties by South American rivals Brazil.
The reigning Copa America champions have it all to do in their final group game when a win will see them leapfrog their opponent’s Paraguay and secure a place in the knock-out stages.
It may be sixth time lucky for Bolivia as they sit second in Group A. The Green have failed to get past Round 1 in their last five attempts but a goalless draw against Mexico and a 3-2 win over Ecuador sees them level on points with Chile with only the hosts left to play.