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Copa America 2024 – Group by Group previews

Copa America 2024 - Group by Group previews

Football fans worldwide eagerly anticipate the 2024 Copa America, and the excitement builds with each passing day.

The tournament will be held in the United States (US) and co-organised by the Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF).

It is poised to be a fiercely contested tournament and an unforgettable spectacle as 16 teams (ten from CONMEBOL and six from CONCACAF) vie for continental supremacy.

Divided into four groups of four teams, the top two from each group advance to the knockout rounds, while the bottom two are eliminated from the tournament.

Let’s take a quick look at each group, analysing each side to see who might emerge from the pack and make it to the knockout rounds.

Fans travelling to the US to experience the spectacle in person can purchase Copa America tickets from at unbeatable prices.

Group A – Argentina, Peru, Chile, Canada

The stage is set for a dramatic Copa America Group A, featuring the world champion Argentina, perennial strugglers Chile and Peru and debutants Canada.

All eyes will be on Lionel Messi as he leads La Albiceleste in what could be the final major international tournament in his trophy-laden career.

Messi finally exorcised his international demons by lifting the World Cup trophy in Qatar two years ago, solidifying his place in the pantheon of greatest players of all time.

Now, as his illustrious career winds down, a nation holds its breath, eager to see if Messi can lead Argentina to one more continental conquest.

Buoyed by their World Cup triumph, Argentina are the clear favourites to win Group A, leaving Canada, Chile, and Peru to fight for the other qualification spot.

Canada arrives at the Copa America after a long absence. Having failed to qualify for the 2016 edition and being ineligible for the last two, the Canadians are eager to prove their mettle.

Under the leadership of new manager Jesse Marsch, Canada are hoping to challenge the established order.

A runner-up finish seems like their most realistic shot at progressing, but they face intense competition from Chile.

The two-time Copa America winners finished as high as fourth across the last two editions and will be determined to halt their recent slump.

Peru will also be hoping to put up a fight but it’ll take a huge miracle for them to get past the opening round.

Group B – Mexico, Ecuador, Venezuela, Jamaica

Copa America 2024 Group B features two CONMEBOL nations, Ecuador and Venezuela, and two CONCACAF competitors, Mexico and Jamaica.

Group B is the only group deprived of former Copa America champions.

Despite not missing out on a single tournament since 1975, Ecuador have never tasted continental glory.

Since first qualifying for the tournament in 1939, their joint-best result is a fourth-place finish in 1959 and 1993, respectively.

Despite their struggles, La Tri are one of the favourites to progress from Group B, although it’s not a foregone conclusion.

Six of their eight attempts to win the Copa America in the 21st century finished in the group stages, which serves as a cautionary tale ahead of the summer.

Venezuela holds the unfortunate distinction of being the only CONMEBOL nation that has never qualified for the World Cup.

Often dubbed the “whipping boys” of the continent, they haven’t enjoyed much success in Copa America either.

However, a decent start to their 2026 World Cup qualifying campaign has instilled a flicker of optimism amongst Venezuelan fans.

Nevertheless, their chances of reaching the knockouts are slim at best.

Mexico are back on the South American stage for the first time since 2016, which was the last time Jamaica featured in the competition.

But unlike the Jamaicans, El Tri are no strangers to notable results at Copa America. They are the joint-favourites to make it out of this section, along with Ecuador.

Group C – USA, Uruguay, Panama, Bolivia

Copa America 2024 Group C consists of two CONMEBOL teams, Bolivia and Uruguay, alongside two CONCACAF nations, Panama and the United States.

Uruguay boasts a glittering Copa America legacy. With 15 titles, they are the joint-most successful team in the competition’s history, alongside defending champions Argentina.

While their last dance with glory came in 2011 under the legendary Oscar Tabarez, Uruguay are the favourites to secure a top-table finish in Group C, with the US tipped to claim the runners-up spot.

This summer’s tournament is also a decent opportunity for the US to redeem themselves following an abysmal semi-final elimination at last year’s CONCACAF Gold Cup.

The seven-time Gold Cup winners are heading to their fifth appearance in the Copa America and their first since a fourth-place finish in 2016.

However, their historical record in the competition is patchy. They have failed to progress past the group stage twice in their four previous tournament appearances since their debut in 1993.

Meanwhile, their best finishes were two fourth-place showings.

Panama, who eliminated the US in the Gold Cup semis, could cause havoc in Group B.

Minnows Bolivia face an uphill task of progressing to the Copa America knockout stage for the first time since 2015.

Group D – Brazil, Colombia, Paraguay, Costa Rica

Copa America 2024 Group D features three former champions, Brazil, Colombia and Paraguay, plus CONCACAF minnows Costa Rica.

Group D could be the second most fiercely contested section in the tournament behind Group A.

Nine-time champions Brazil are clear favourites to advance to the knockouts as group winners, but they must avoid complacency.

Brazil’s disappointing 2022 World Cup quarter-final exit left the iconic footballing country on the edge of despair.

The situation quickly worsened following an abysmal run of three consecutive defeats in the 2026 World Cup qualifiers.

The awful run of form signalled the end of Fluminense manager Fernando Diniz’s tenure, with the Selecao stranded in sixth in the CONMEBOL group.

However, they are keen to turn the corner under new manager Dorival Junior and erase painful memories of the 1-0 defeat to Argentina in the 2021 final.

Brazil are gunning for a landmark 10th Copa America title, but they’d have to do it without Neymar due to injuries.

Colombia, the 2001 winners, are given a better chance of progression than Paraguay and Costa Rica after hitting a purple patch in the build-up to the competition.

Los Cafeteros have become a force to be reckoned with under the leadership of Nestor Lorenzo, who has masterminded a jaw-dropping 19-match unbeaten streak since his debut in June 2022.

Brazil’s abysmal form since returning home from Qatar opens the door for Colombia to claim a coveted top spot, a feat they last achieved in 2019 when they bowed out in the round of 16.

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