The Copa America quarterfinals begin with the host nation, Chile, playing against a very disappointing Uruguay side, that might be in even more trouble if Edinson Cavani ends up leaving the tournament for family reasons.
This Copa America is turning out to be more about legal issues than anything else and especially car accidents. Arturo Vidal made some headlines with his arrest that eventually didn’t lead to his expulsion from the Chilean team. Edinson Cavani himself didn’t do anything, but the fact that his father finds himself in something of pickle after his father hit a 19-year old motorcyclist resulting in the latter’s death might send the striker to his home country and leave the national team without its second biggest star, while Luis Suarez isn’t even allowed to play.
In terms of football, there’s only one way this match is going to be played. Chile attacking non stop and Uruguay not even playing for counter attacks, instead closing down the pitch and parking the bus. Argentina complained about how Uruguay made it impossible to play football after the 1-0 win in their group match, and sparks didn’t exactly fly in the win over Jamaica or the draw with Paraguay.
Chile were the most impressive team in the group stage, although possibly in a weak group. With 7 points and 10 goals in two wins over Bolivia and Ecuador while also drawing 3-3 in a wild match against Mexico’s B team, Chile answered the expectations from fans, but doing it against more experienced, cynical and difficult opponents is a different story.
Eduardo Vargas, Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal obviously remain the most important players and most likely to be involved in any goal scoring opportunities. Finding the freedom through the tight Uruguayan defense, which means probably striking early, or at least trying to. Watching how Colombia broke Uruguay quite easily in last year’s World Cup would be a good place to start. The longer this match drags on, the worse it gets for Uruguay, although it is difficult seeing where Uruguay get the goals from, especially if Cavani isn’t going to play.