Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Copa América Previews - Group C

So, we've covered Groups A and B, now we are onto the Group C. The final group to look at and it's looking like a two horse race for the last eight.


Tournament Best: Runners up in 1955, 1956, 1979, 1987
Head Coach: Claudio Borghi

Squad (Domestic Unless Stated):

Goalkeepers: Claudio Bravo (Real Sociedad. Spain), Miguel Pinto (Atlas, Mexico), Paulo Garcés (Universidad Católica)
Defenders: Pablo Contreras (PAOK Salonika, Greece), Gonzalo Jara (West Bromwich Albion, England), Waldo Ponce (Cruz Azul, Mexico), Marco Estrada (Montpellier, France)
Midfielders: Jorge Valdivia (Palmeiras, Brazil), Matías Fernández (Sporting CP, Portugal), Gary Medel (Sevilla, Spain), Rodrigo Millar (Colo Colo), Carlos Carmona (Atalanta, Italy), Luis Jiménez (Cesena, Italy), Mauricio Isla (Udinese, Italy), Gonzalo Fierro (Flamengo, Brazil), Francisco Silva (Universidad Católica), Arturo Vidal (FC Bayer 04 Leverkusen, Germany), Felipe Gutiérrez (Universidad Católica)
Forwards: Humberto Suazo (Monterey, Mexico), Alexis Sánchez (Udinese, Italy), Jean Beausejour (Birmingham City, England), Esteban Paredes (Colo Colo), Carlos Muñoz (Santiago Wanderers)

La Roja put up a good show 12 months ago in South Africa when the made the last 16 but eliminated by a team they could face in this competition, Brazil. Jean Beausajour was one of the heroes 12 months ago when he got the vital goal to give La Roja a 1-0 victory over Honduras. Despite the departure of Mareclo Biesla and arrival of Claudio Borghi, Chile will hope to continue in the fashion that gained them lots of admirers in South Africa last year and with Alexis Sanchez currently one of the most wanted players by the big European teams we hope it doesn't prove to be too much of a distraction for them. They should be more than good enough to make the knock out stages.
Key Man: Arturo Vidal is also hot property at the moment
Most likely to be linked with Man City: Alexis Sanchez. Oh, er, hang on a minute or two.

Invitees - Runners up in 1993 and 2001
Head Coach: Luis Fernando Tena

Squad (Domestic Unless Stated)

Goalkeepers: Luis Ernesto Michel (CD Guadalajara), Liborio Sánchez (Querétaro), Carlos Felipe Rodríguez (Morelia)
Defenders: Kristian Álvarez (CD Guadalajara), Oswaldo Alanis (Estudiantes) Miguel Ángel Ponce (CD Guadalajara), Dárvin Chávez (Monterrey), Hiram Mier (Monterrey), Paul Aguilar (América), Nestor Araujo (Cruz Azul), Diego Reyes (América), Héctor Reynoso (CD Guadalajara)
Midfielders: Diego de Buen (UNAM) Édgar Pacheco (UANL), Javier Aquino (Cruz Azul), Antonio Gallardo (CD Guadalajara), Emilio Orrantía (UNAM), Jorge Enríquez (CD Guadalajara)
Forwards: Giovanni Dos Santos (Tottenham Hotspur, England), Alan Pulido (UANL), Ulises Dávila (CD Guadalajara), Oribe Peralta (Santos Laguna), Rafael Márquez Lugo (Morelia),

After winning the CONCACAF Gold Cup last Sunday in Los Angeles against the USA, Mexico are straight back into tournament action as they look to go one better than 1993 and 2001. Of the squad only Dos Santos and Reynoso will be in Argentina as most of the big European clubs pull rank on their players. The goal of Dos Santos in the Copa de Oro final was an absolute belter but Mexico have gone for untried and untested talent as regular boss Jose Manuel de la Torre takes and break and lets Luis Fernando Tena take control. Add in Jonathan dos Santos, Nestor Vidrio, Javier Cortes, David Cabrera, Nestor Calderon, Israel Jimenez, Jorge Hernandez and Marco Fabian have been sent home for violating team rules just before a final squad needed to be submitted to CONMEBOL means it's going to be hard work for El Tricolor.
Key Man: Giovanni Dos Santos, excellent in the Gold Cup, decent in Spain, shit in England.
Most likely to be linked with Man City: Anyone not accused of a serious sexual offence


Winners: 1939, 1975
Head Coach: Sergio Markarián

Squad (Domestic Unless Stated)

Goalkeepers: Salomón Libman (Alianza Lima), Raúl Fernández (Nice, France), Leao Butrón (Universidad San Martin)
Defenders: Santiago Acasiete (Almería, Spain), Walter Vílchez (Sporting Cristal), Renzo Revoredo (Universitario de Desportes), Christian Ramos (Alianza Lima), Giancarlo Carmona (San Lorenzo, Argentina), Yoshimar Yotún (Sporting Cristal), Alberto Rodríguez (Sporting CP, Portugal), Aldo Corzo (Universidad San Martin), Orlando Contreras, (Universidad San Martin)
Midfielders Antonio Gonzales (Universitario de Desportes), Juan Manuel Vargas (Fiorentina, Italy), Adán Balbín (Universidad San Martin), Carlos Lobatón (Sporting Cristal), Michael Guevara (Sport Boys), Rinaldo Cruzado (Juan Aurich), Josepmir Ballón (River Plate, Argentina)
Forwards: Paolo Guerrero (SV Hamburg, Germany), Raúl Ruidíaz (Universitario de Deportes), Luis Advíncula (Sporting Cristal), André Carrillo (Sporting CP, Portugal)

Claudio Pizarro omitted and Jefferson Farfán injured means Peru's chances of pulling themselves off the bottom on CONMEBOL's ranking table is pretty slim. It seems La Rojiblanca will be just there to make up the numbers after the omission of Pizarro and the injury that has wrecked Farfán's chances of turning out. Sergio Markarián could well be looking for new employment at the end of this one as they will fight it out with Mexico for the chance of sneaking into the last eight from third place.
Key Man: Paolo Guerrero need to reproduce his Bundesliga form to give Peru any hope.
Most likely to be linked with Man City: Josepmir Ballón, talented midfielder who won't fancy being in Primera B Nacional with River come September

Uruguay Winners: 1916, 1917, 1920, 1923, 1924, 1926, 1935, 1942, 1956, 1959, 1967, 1983, 1987, 1995
Head Coach: Óscar Tabárez

Squad (Domestic Unless Stated)

Goalkeepers: Fernando Muslera (SS Lazio, Italy), Juan Castillo (Colo Colo, Chile), Martín Silva (Defensor Sporting)
Defenders: Diego Lugano (Fenerbahçe, Turkey) Diego Godín (Atlético Madrid, Spain), Mauricio Victorino (Cruzeiro, Brazil), Maxi Pereira (Benfica, Portugal), Andrés Scotti (Colo Colo, Chile), Martín Cáceres (Sevilla, Spain), Sebastián Coates (Nacional)
Midfielders: Walter Gargano (Napoli, Italy), Cristian Rodríguez (FC Porto, Portugal), Sebastián Eguren (Sporting de Gijón, Spain), Álvaro Pereira (FC Porto, Portugal), Nicolás Lodeiro (Ajax, Holland) Diego Pérez (Bologna, Italy), Egidio Arévalo Ríos (Botafogo, Brazil), Álvaro González (SS Lazio, Italy)
Forwards: Edinson Cavani (Napoli, Italy), Luis Suárez (Liverpool, England), Diego Forlán (Atlético Madrid, Spain), Sebastián Abreu (Botafogo, Brazil), Abel Hernández (Palermo, Italy)

The joint most successful side in Copa history, Uruguay have real hope of adding another to their impressive haul. After making the last four in South Africa with the same group of players, that's the minimum requirement here. Look at the forwards. Go on - look! How impressive is that, with Palermo hot-shot Abel Hernandez as fifth choice. That's depth in quality most sides anywhere in the world would give a right arm for. At the back too, Diego Godín and Martin Cáceres are as good as any other pair in the tournament and Fernando Muslera has had a great season with Lazio on the back of his outstanding World Cup. And if they need a reserve keeper, there's always Luis Suárez.
Key man: Godin. A leader of men, a fantastic tackler and under-rated ball player. If he goes well, Uruguay go well. Diego Forlán is still vital too.
Most likely to be linked with Man City: Nicolás Lodeiro. He's not made a huge impact at Ajax yet as the Dutch giants look to bring him on carefully, but a decent tournament and everyone will want a sniff of the boy.

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