Colombia seeks to take a revenge against Ecuador when they meet for the Copa América 2021.
The Colombian National Team will seek this Sunday from 7:00 p.m. Peruvian time (00:00 GMT) the rematch against Ecuador on the first day of Group A of the Copa América, since the last time both teams met, in November In 2020, Gustavo Alfaro’s team won 6-1 in Quito, precipitating the departure of Portuguese Carlos Queiroz.
However, now both teams face the duel in a quite different context. The coffee grower, led by Reinaldo Rueda, has achieved four points out of six in the two qualifying rounds of the World Cup in Qatar this month, while ‘La Tri’ lost 2-0 to Brazil and 1-2 to Peru in Quito.
The match will be played at the Arena Pantanal stadium, in the Brazilian city of Cuiabá, and will be directed by Argentine referee Néstor Pitana.
HUNGER FOR REVANCHE
Rueda and his team arrived in Brazil on Friday night to concentrate for this match in which the former Chile coach will have 27 players, as attacker Juan Ferney Otero fell from the list at the last minute for testing positive for COVID-19 .
It is expected that for this meeting the Colombian strategist will put on the field several of the players who participated in the tough defeat last November, such as central defender Davinson Sánchez, midfielder Matheus Uribe, midfielder Juan Guillermo Cuadrado and forward Duván Zapata.
Other players are also expected to appear in the eleven, such as striker Luis Fernando Muriel, goalkeeper David Ospina and full-back William Tesillo, who in the two games that Rueda has led since his return have been indispensable for the coach.
And, despite not having figures like James Rodríguez, Falcao García and Juan Fernando Quintero, Rueda relies on the good feelings shown by a team led on the court by Cuadrado and Muriel, who took over from their teammates and will be keys in the search for revenge against Ecuador.
Also in two players who joined the call at the last minute: Yimmi Chará, of the Portland Timbers of the USA, and the central Jhon Jáner Lucumí, KRC Genk of Belgium.
AN OPPORTUNITY TO IMPROVE
Ecuador also arrived in the Brazilian city of Cuiabá on Friday with 28 players who will try to improve the poor performance they had in the last tournament, also played in Brazil two years ago and in which they were last in Group C with a point of nine possible behind Japan, Chile and Uruguay.
Like Colombia, Alfaro’s team will have to deal with a sensitive loss, that of midfielder Carlos Gruezo, from Augsburg, who was left out of the call by testing positive for COVID-19.
However, the Ecuadorian coach will have several of the pillars of this process, such as central Robert Arboleda, from Sao Paulo; the side Pervis Estupiñán, from Villarreal; veteran Ángel Mena, from León de México, and striker Enner Valencia, from Fenerbahçe.
The main task of the Andean team will be to improve the image left in the last two games, because, in addition to falling, those led by Alfaro did not show the football that surprised their own and strangers in November 2019 when they thrashed Colombia 6-1 and beat 2-3 to Bolívar in La Paz, so they are in qualifying positions for Qatar 2022.
In addition to Colombia and Ecuador, Group A is also made up of Brazil, which will open the tournament against Venezuela, and Peru, which will debut on the second day against Canarinha.
- Colombia: David Ospina; Stefan Medina, Yerry Mina, Davinson Sánchez, William Tesillo; Wilmar Barrios, Matheus Uribe, Juan Guillermo Cuadrado, Luis Díaz; Luis Fernando Muriel and Duván Zapata.
- Coach: Reinaldo Rueda.
- Ecuador: Alexander Domínguez; Ángelo Preciado, Robert Arboleda, Xavier Arreaga, Pervis Estupiñán; Christian Noboa, Jhegson Méndez, Alan Franco; Ángel Mena, Ayrton Preciado and Enner Valencia.
- Coach: Gustavo Alfaro
- Referee: Argentine Nestor Pitana, who will be accompanied by his compatriots Ezequiel Brailovsky and Gabriel Chade. The Spanish Jesús Gil Manzano will be the fourth official.
- Stadium: Arena Pantanal, in Cuiabá.
- Time: 19:00 (00:00 GMT).