New-look Copa América heads to Argentina, Colombia

The South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) has awarded hosting rights for the 2020 Copa América to Argentina and Colombia, with the national team tournament set to undergo a major revamp for next year’s edition.

The announcement by CONMEBOL yesterday (Tuesday) comes after it reached a provisional agreement on the hosting rights last month. Brazil is due to host this year’s Copa América from June 14 to July 7, with the 2020 tournament set to see it return to a cycle of being played every four years.

CONMEBOL said yesterday that the 2020 Copa América will be split into north and south zones, comprising of six teams apiece. The North Zone will be comprised of Colombia, plus Brazil, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru and an invited team. Argentina will anchor the South Zone with Chile, Uruguay, Paraguay, Bolivia and another guest nation.

Each group will qualify four teams for the final stage, consisting of quarter-finals, semi-finals and the final itself. The new format means the 2020 Copa América will expand from 26 to 38 matches.

Alejandro Dominguez, president of CONMEBOL, said: “The central objective of this change is to provide more facilities for fans and geographically bring the matches of the teams to the South American public. Fans can enjoy at least five games of their team, which reinforces the event as a sports party.”

While it has yet to be determined who will host the latter stages of the tournament, initial details have been sketched out for its venues. The Colombian Football Federation (FCF) said it is currently putting forward the Nemesio Camacho El Campín in Bogotá, Atanasio Girardot in Medellín, Estadio Olímpico Pascual Guerrero in Cali and the Estadio Metropolitano Roberto Meléndez in Barranquilla. However, it added it is still considering other host cities.

The Argentinian Football Association (AFA) has not formally confirmed its stadium plans, but local newspaper Clarín said potential candidates include La Bombonera, El Monumental and Cilindro de Avellaneda in Buenos Aires; Estadio Mario Alberto Kempes in Córdoba; Malvinas Argentinas in Mendoza; Estadio San Juan del Bicentenario in San Juan; and the Estadio Ciudad de Santiago del Estero.