Thursday, 12 July 2007

Copa America Final

Sunday's final of the Copa America will see old foes Argentina and Brazil square up to each other, after the results of the past 2 days. Argentina beat Mexico 3-0 in the semi-final last night, largely in thanks to an excellent goal by Messi ( but Mexico squandered chances, particularly up-and-coming striker Nery Castillo hitting the bar when he could have levelled the scores.

Brazil, it the other semi on Tuesday, drew 2-2 with Uruguay and won the resulting penatly shoot out 5-4. Robinho is top scorer in the competition with 6 goals (it certainly came as a suprise to me, he's the Akinbyie of Brazil) but 3 have been penalties.

There is no doubt who is treating this more seriously, Argentina, despite reports earlier in the year of a B team being fielded in the competition, took all their stars, and thus are now under big pressure to win. Brazil left many players out from the squad that went to the World Cup last year - Kaka, Ronaldinho and Adriano the notable absentees - in favour of trying some youth - Diego, Vagner Love, Elano et al.

Argentina have been mightily impressive so far, they have scored 16 goals in 5 games, winning them all. Brazil have won 3, drew 1 and lost 1, their first match against Mexico.

So a preview of the final then?
Argenitna should be favourites - old timer Veron and Riquelme pull the strings in midfield, tevez and Messi provide great attacking threat. They are solid at the back with Heinze and Ayala. Brazil are not so impressive, Doni in goal has been dodgy (witness Heinze's goal last night :, their defense isn't great, conceeding 5 goals in 5 games and I don't believe they have enough firepower up front.
I favour Argentina, despite their recent reputation as chokers...

Overall, the tournament appears low on quality - Roque Santa Cruz can score a hat-trick, and Robinho is top scorer. There have been many high scorelines so far, Brazil and Argentina have been blowing teams away, so I really don't think it is any major achievement to win the competition. It should be a good final on Sunday however, and, like all major finals, I'm hoping for goals and a few punch-ups.



JJ said...

I think the Argies have more than enough for Brazil but then again they’ve not been under any real pressure in this tournament. Should they go behind they might wilt. Let’s hope the new manager doesn’t do a Pekerman and take off Riquelme in the middle of a crucial game, though he’d probably be killed if he did. Seriously, this is south American football after all.

Overall they deserve it and yet again we’ve been shown that despite his time in English football, Seba Veron is pure class.

estoverao said...

Actually Robinho has only scored 2 penalties(1-Chile,1-Ecuador) with the rest of his goals coming from open play. Also, compared to last years World Cup or even the EURO championship before it, this years COPA AMERICA is offering much more in terms of flowing attractive football and individual technical ability and skills.

On paper, Argentina should definitely win, but we all know they choke, so look for a Robinho double to be enough for Brasil to win it all!!

PS- isn't ROBINHO a lot better when not playing for a CAPELLO negative football tactics coached team, thank God for Schuster will bring back the flair at MADRID next year so we can see the real ROBINHO in Europe as well!

Mark V said...

apologies for the error, i should have said 2 penalties. The copa america may be full of goals but I don't the quality of all the teams is that high.

Robinho undoubtedly has talent, we'll see how Schuster does with him next season