Although the pandemic has altered the perception of time and the Copa América 2019 seems very far away, two years is not too long for international football. During this period, those selected had little competition and only played six official matches between that tournament and the current Cup. Then, How much has the landscape of the continent changed in the last 24 months? Let’s see.
First of all, it is necessary to say that seven of the eight protagonists of the second round repeat. Only Ecuador makes its appearance instead of Venezuela. The rest maintained their place among the best in the region. And that continuity can also be seen in the names.
People say that in South America the turnover of players is slower than in Europe. ANDIn the Euro there are more surprises and teams with fewer scrolls have competed against the powers because they managed to form solid squads. What’s more, the average age of the figures is lower than here, where the stars have been the same for ten years. That is why the few changes that have occurred in these years are not surprising.
Of the seven selected that repeat, five maintain the same coaching staff. They just changed Colombia, with Reinaldo Rueda in place of Carlos Queiroz, and chili, with Martín Lasarte instead of Rueda himself. That is there is only one new coach: the Uruguayan from La Roja. In addition, Gustavo Alfaro leads Ecuador, which in 2019 was eliminated in the first wheel with Bolillo Gómez as DT.
The general look indicates that the starting teams changed very little. Some did renewal after Russia 2018, such as Argentina and Uruguay, and others they have maintained the base for more than five years, like Peru and Chile. Brazil incorporated specific elements and recovered Neymar and Paraguay did add several new ones to his eleven.
Of the eleven who played against Venezuela in 2019, ten are still in the Argentine squad. Only Juan Foyth is not there. There were some changes in the base line-up: the income of Emiliano Martínez for Franco Armani, Nahuel Molina or Gonzalo Montiel for Foyth, Cristian Romero for Germán Pezzella, Nicolás González for Nicolás Tagliafico and Giovanni Lo Celso for Sergio Agüero, with a change of scheme .
In Uruguay, the eleven who lost on penalties with Peru remain on the squad, but Nicolás De la Cruz and Matías Viña joined the base line-up. His rival will be Colombia, which maintained the defense and midfield. who lost to Chile on penalties, but completely changed his lead. James Rodríguez, Radamel Falcao García and Roger Martínez are not there and there are names like Duván Zapata, Luis Díaz, Rafael Santos Borré and Miguel Borja (the latter were not on the squad).
La Roja no longer has Rueda, but the base has remained unchanged since the time of Marcelo Bielsa. Yes there was a very important forced loss: that of Alexis Sánchez, who was replaced by the young blood of Ben Brereton. Nor are Jean Beausejour and José Fuenzalida already there and Eugenio Mena and Francisco Sierralta do play.
Chile’s adversary will be the super candidate Brazil, defending champion who defeated Paraguay on penalties in the quarterfinals of 2019. He has almost no new faces among the eleven, only Renán Lodi and Neymar, of course. Gabigol also joined. Meanwhile, Filipe Luis, Allan, Arthur and Coutinho came out. And Richarlison and Fred affirmed.
Peru and Paraguay will animate the duel with more changes from the 2021 quarterfinals. Ricardo Gareca decided on a squad with several changes for this Cup and Luis Advíncula, Carlos Zambrano, Edison Flores and Paolo Guerrero are not there of those who reached the end of the last edition. Alexander Callens, Aldo Corzo, Sergio Peña and Gianluca Lapadula joined.
While, Paraguay kept only five starting players, led by Gustavo Gómez, Junior Alonso and Miguel Almirón. The Romero brothers, Gustavo Ávalos, Brian Samudio, Villasanti, Alberto Espínola and Omar Alderete took hold.