Thursday, 14 July 2011

Despite poor starts all the big nations qualify

After much needed victories Brazil and Argentina confirmed their progression into the knock out stages of the Copa America. Uruguay also secured their place in the last eight with victory over Mexico, who were the only team from Group C who failed to progress.

In group A, Colombia secured top spot after easily overcoming a poor Bolivia side 2-0 with both goals coming from the much saught after striker Falcao. Playing a day later meant Argentina knew the highest they could finish was 2nd, which meant overcoming a second string Costa Rica side. And after making wholesale changes they were far too strong for the youthful Costa Rican's winning easily 3-0. Two goals for Sergio Aguero and one for Angel Di Maria only slightly resembled their dominance in what was a much better performance. Gonzalo Higuain, Lionel Messi along with the two goalscorers all spearheaded a frightening strike force, with Messi claiming two assists, the second a beautiful pass for Di Maria who smashed home.

For the second time in as many games Paraguay failed to hold a lead with the game heading into injury time, however this time they threw away a 3-1 lead with Venezuela rescuing the unlikeliest of points with Miku and Perozo snatching a draw which ensured Venezuela finished second. Brazil, like Argentina, drew their opening two games, and again they followed the Argentina method after winning their final group game to secure progression. Two goals apiece from Neymar and Pato ensured Julio Cesar's error to allow Manchester City's Felipe Caceido to draw the sides level at 1-1 was irrelevant. The win ensured Brazil finished top of Group B, meaning they play Paraguay in the quarter finals, ironically who finished third in their group.

In the final group the trio of Chile, Uruguay and Peru all qualified. Chile overcame Peru thanks to a last minute own goal, ensuring the Chilians topped group C and a quarter final match with Venezuela. Uruguay went into their final game knowing defeat would've ended their Copa America campaign, however despite spurning many chances they beat a youthful Mexico 1-0, with Diego Forlan coming in for some criticism after missing countless chances for the World Cup semi-finalists.

Quarter final draw (predictions in brackets)
Colombia vs Peru (2-0)
Uruguay vs Argentina (1-2)
Brazil vs Paraguay (2-1)
Chile vs Venezuela (3-1)

Round 3 predictions (actual score in brackets)- Argentina 3 Costa Rica 1 (3-0), Colombia 2 Bolivia 0 (2-0), Brazil 1 Ecuador 0 (4-2), Paraguay 1 Venezeula 0 (3-3), Chile 2 Peru 1 (1-0), Uruguay 2 Mexico 0 (1-0)

No comments:

Post a Comment