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The country is getting ready to receive a new edition of the oldest competition in the world, and that will be unusual by an unexpected factor
Brazil will host the 2019 Copa América, which will be played from June 14 to July 7 and in which Chile is the defending its title as champion, so its expected that they go for a new trophy in Rio de Janeiro. As has been customary in each of the disputed editions, this year's is not far behind in anecdotes and curiosities. The first one is the participation of two Asian teams, one being Japan.
Leer en español: Prepárate para un insólita edición de la Copa América de Brasil 2019
However, it is not the first time that the Japanese will be in the soccer event, they already participated in the 1999 edition held in Paraguay. This participation is remembered by the journalist Guillermo Tomoyose, who in his blog recalled that participation highlighting a goal of the 'samurai blue' Kazuyoshi Miura, "the first Japanese player to play in a European league, in the Genoa of Italy," says Tomoyose.
Later, in Argentina 2011, the Asians received the same invitation from Conmebol but on that occasion, they declined it. In an article published by El Pais de España at that time the president of the Japanese Football Federation, Junji Ogura, argued that the absence was due to the fact that the European teams had not released the bulk of the players who would participate in the tournament.
But the Japanese are back. Oddly enough, the Asian team will play the second Copa America of its history. But Japan will not be the only exotic team that will be in Brazil's tournament, because the Conmebol also invited Qatar.
The reason for inviting that country to the Copa America is its participation in the next World Cup, as Infobae says. "For Qatar, being in the Copa América is presented as a golden opportunity to win international attention and acquire competitiveness, thinking of the 2022 World Cup where it hopes not to leave in the first phase and play a worthy role," the press release says.
But the article goes further and points out that the presence of Qatar's team would also have to do with the sponsorship that the airline Qatar Airways provides to Boca Juniors of Argentina. Likewise, the large sum of money that the Asian country would invest in the championship would be vital for the development and progress of the Copa América.
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Unusual and curious
In a BBC article, the British media relives fun facts and curiosities of the oldest tournament of the planet. Here are some:
- Ronaldo in diapers: In the 1999 edition, held in Paraguay, the Brazilian Ronaldo had to play most of the games with diapers. In this way, 'The Phenomenon' had to counteract the side effects of the laxatives that he ingested to lose weight.
- Number 6?: Diego Armando Maradona played his first Copa América with Argentina, not with his traditional shirt number 10 but with the number 6. The anecdote was told by the historical Cesar Luis Menotti, who recalled that the number was given to the player in the 1979 edition since from the beginning it was not thought that he was a starter and 10 should be for someone fixed in the starting lineup.
- Winning generation: Diego Forlán held the Copa América that Uruguay won in 2011. The fact is that 'Cachavacha' achieved an accomplishment that his father and grandfather had already done it. The first won the trophy in 1967 and the second had done the same in 1959. Without a doubt, Forlan family are the kings of America.
Tickets are out now
Five months after the start of the Cup in Brazilian territory, Conmebol put tickets on sale to watch the games. According to The FM, the organization brought to the public a million entries, ranging from 60 reals (16 dollars) and 890 reals (240 dollars).
"The first phase of the sale will last until January 24, when the draw organized by the Conmebol will define the composition of the three groups in which the competitors will be divided and the stadiums in which each team will play this phase," says FM.
For now, the 12 participating teams were divided into four drums: the first consisting of Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina , nameArgentina,; Colombia, Chile and Peru, in the second; Venezuela, Paraguay and Japan, in the third; and Ecuador, Bolivia and Qatar, in the fourth.
LatinAmerican Post | Yeinson Fajardo Bohórquez
Translated from: 'Prepárate para un insólita edición de la Copa América de Brasil 2019'