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Copa America Betting – Third Time’s A Charm For Argentina Against Brazil In Copa Final

Posted by Todd Shale on 6/28/2011 5:16:33 PM
copa america group a betting

Online betting players head into the 43rd edition of the Copa America knowing that there are two levels to this tournament: Brazil and Argentina, and then the rest of the field. The giants should meet for the third consecutive Copa America final, and you can bet that Argentina won’t be denied after a pair of tough losses, especially as the host country.

What: Soccer Betting
When: July 1st-July 24th
Where: Eight cities throughout Argentina; Final in Buenos Aires
Pick: Argentina +110

The Favorites

Argentina (+110) hosts the Copa America tournament for a record ninth time, and they are looking to break a tie with Uruguay on 14 championships. However, they haven’t won this event since 1993, and in the last two editions they’ve lost in the finals to Brazil (+175), including 2007’s 3-0 thrashing. The two South American giants are third (Brazil) and fifth (Argentina) in FIFA’s rankings, and they could be on a collision course for another massive showdown. Argentina will look to forward Lionel Messi to replicate his form from Barcelona, as he has never really been able to dominate the game for his country as he does for his club. They’re loaded with talent, such as Carlos Tevez, Sergio Aguero and Angel di Maria, but new manager Sergio Batista was a defensive midfielder during his playing days, so he will try to tighten up La Albiceleste at the back. Since losing to Brazil back in 2007, Argentina has two wins and a draw in three matches, including a 1-0 win in Qatar in November.

The Brazilians have won four of the last five Copa America tournaments, and they also made a coaching change after a disappointing World Cup last summer, replacing Dunga with Mano Menezes. There was a worry about the health of forward Alexandre Pato, who has been battling a shoulder injury, and he has cooled off after scoring three goals in four friendlies at the end of 2010. But it’s A Selecao and they’re stacked, with players like 19-year-old Neymar, who is being chased by the top teams in Europe, Robinho and defender David Luiz, who was very good at Chelsea. Brazil also has the best keeper in the tournament in Julio Cesar, who stars for Inter Milan.

The Second Tier

Chile (+1000) would love to have another crack at Brazil, who romped to a 3-0 win over La Roja in South Africa, and midfielder Matias Fernandez has been excellent for his country as of late, scoring three goals in their last five matches. Chile also hasn’t allowed a goal in their last five games, including a goalless draw on the road in Paraguay (+1500), and they actually fared well in a 4-2 loss in Argentina in May, so nerves shouldn’t be a problem in this tournament. Paraguay is grouped with Brazil, so they may have to aim for second place in their group.
Uruguay (+1000) finished fourth at the World Cup behind the exploits of forward Diego Forlan, but 24-year-old Luis Suarez may become the main man for La Celeste after a spectacular beginning at Liverpool. Suarez may be remembered more for his deliberate handball against Ghana in the World Cup, but he’ll be known for more positive things after this tournament.

Uruguay last won this event in 1995, and they could be the best soccer betting wager to come out of this group. If you’re looking for a little value, though, Mexico (+2500) is coming off a win in the Gold Cup, and they finished third in the last Copa America, defeating Uruguay in the third-place game. Giovanni Santos was fantastic in the Gold Cup, but fatigue could be a factor for El Tri, who are also sending a lot of younger players, but not Javier Hernandez, who starred for Manchester United during the season and was also excellent during the Gold Cup.

The Longshots

Colombia (+3000) is the last team not named Brazil to win the Copa America, claiming it in 2001, and Los Cafeteros have been inconsistent in the run-up to this event. They have a youthful strike trio with Hugo Rodallega, Jackson Martinez and Radamel Falcao, but their midfield is going to be the key to their success. Ecuador (+5000), like Colombia, didn’t qualify for the World Cup, but they’ve never had much success in the Copa America, finishing with a high of fourth in 1959 and 1993. Christian Benitez will be the player of attention for La Tri, but elsewhere there isn’t much talent throughout the side.

Peru (+10000) has won a pair of Copa America tournaments, but none since 1975, although they have made it to the quarterfinals in four straight tournaments. However, Peru is grouped with Chile, Uruguay and a Mexican side that is young, but will be up for it.

How It Will Play Out

It’s tough to see past Argentina and Brazil to meet in the finals for a third Copa America in a row (and for the 11th time overall in the tournament), unless one of the two has an off day in the quarterfinals or final four. Uruguay stands the best chance of getting rid of the giants, while Chile needs a couple of breaks.

In the end, Argentina should end Brazil’s stranglehold on this tournament, as they have a little more experience than the eight-time champions, and Messi will come a little closer to fulfilling his potential in the Argentina shirt, although he’ll need some help to stretch the defense out. Di Maria will be especially important as a playmaker from the wing, as that will create space in the middle of the pitch for Messi and Tevez. Also, an interesting stat to heed before making your pick: six of Argentina’s Copa America victories have come as the host country. Bet on the favorites, Argentina, in your sports betting book.

Copa America Betting Pick: Argentina

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