Stoppage Time – International Football Blog

CONMEBOL: Copa Sudamericana 2010 Preview

Posted in South America Football by peterbein on August 3, 2010
Copa Sudamericana

Who will win the Copa Sudamericana in 2010?

South America’s second club competition begins this week with an unusual mixture of first and second round matches taking place throughout the continent. Stoppage Time – International Football Blog tries to make sense of it all:

The Copa Sudamericana is now firmly established as an important part of South America’s footballing calendar and has reached its ninth year having started in 2002. San Lorenzo were the inaugural champions of the event beating Colombia’s Atlético Nacional and pathed the way for Argentinian clubs to dominate proceedings with all but two of the eight finals so far featuring Argentinian teams. For every season since the tournament’s inception the traditional giants of River Plate and Boca Juniors, who are the competition’s most successful team winning back-to-back titles in 2004 and 2005, had been invited to play but have been denied automatic entry from 2010 and must qualify on merit like everyone else (sadly neither of them qualified this time around). The competition has been further enhanced this year by the reward of a place in the 2011 Copa Libertadores (South American Champions League) for the winning team, something which UEFA has been reluctant to do with its secondary club competition, the Europa League. As ever in this tournament each round is played over two legs with a limited first round and a bigger second round with many of the entrants in the latter not having to play in the former due to qualification rules.

This year’s tournament kicks off tonight in Paraguay where Olimpia Asuncion, South American champions as recently as 2002, plays against Defensor Sporting of Uruguay who reached the quarter-finals of this competition in 2007. Four more games are played this week with two all-Brazilian ties featuring prominently. Atlético Mineiro play against Grêmio Prudente on Wednesday whilst the more famous Grêmio from Porto Alegre will meet Goiás on Thursday, both matches being second round match-ups. Two matches not featuring Brazilian clubs see Trujillanos FC from Venezuela face off against Colombians Atlético Huila, who are playing in their maiden Sudamericana, whilst Peruvians Universidad San Martín, who failed to make it past the first round in their only previous appearance in 2006, play against Deportivo Quito of Ecuador in the first round.

Speaking of Ecuadorians one may be wondering where defending Sudamericana champions LDU Quito feature in this year’s tournament. The answer is that LDU, the only club to have won the trophy featuring in this year’s competition, have been given a bye into the Round of 16 stage where they will meet any from Unión San Felipe (Chile), River Plate (Uruguay) or Guaraní (Paraguay) – the Chileans waiting to see which of the other two they will meet in the second stage. The only other question to be answered is who will be Chile’s third representative in the tournament after Colo-Colo and Unión San Felipe? This has yet to be decided but the answer will be known on August 18th after a two-leg play-off between Universidad de Chile and Municipal Iquique has been completed, the winner of which meets Bolivia’s Oriente Petrolero in the first round.

All in all the composition of the tournament involves thirty nine teams from ten countries. Some of the teams may also have played in this year’s Copa Libertadores tournament as well (e.g. Estudiantes de La Plata, Colo-Colo) as some countries may have qualification criteria which allows this to happen whilst some, the most obvious example being Brazil, do not allow this dual-competition participation to occur. Below is the full draw for the first and second rounds of this year’s tournament:

COPA SUDAMERICANA 2010 – FIRST ROUND DRAW

Colo-Colo (Chile) v Universitario (Bolivia)

River Plate (Uruguay) v Guaraní (Paraguay)

Barcelona (Ecuador) v U. Cesar Vallejo (Peru)

Trujillanos (Venezuela) v Atlético Huila (Colombia)

Oriente Petrolero (Bolivia) v Universidad de Chile/Municipal Iquique (Chile Play-Off)

Olimpia (Paraguay) v Defensor Sporting (Uruguay)

U.San Martín (Peru) v Deportivo Quito (Ecuador)

Santa Fe (Colombia) v Deportivo Lara (Venezuela)

COPA SUDAMERICANA 2010 – SECOND ROUND DRAW

San José (Bol) v Trujillanos/Atlético Huila

Argentinos Juniors (Arg) v Independiente (Arg)

Peñarol (Uru) v Barcelona/U. Cesar Vallejo

Palmeiras (Bra) v Vitória (Bra)

Caracas FC (Ven) v Santa Fe/Deportivo Lara

Avaí FC (Bra) v Santos FC (Bra)

Deportes Tolima (Col) v Oriente Petrolero/Universidad de Chile/Municipal Iquique

Unión San Felipe (Chi) v River Plate/Guaraní

Banfield (Arg) v Vélez Sársfield (Arg)

Emelec (Ecu) v U.San Martín/Deportivo Quito

Atlético Mineiro (Bra) v Grêmio Prudente (Bra)

Cerro Porteño (Par) v Colo-Colo/Universitario

Grêmio (Bra) v Goiás FC (Bra)

Sport Huancayo (Per) v Olimpia/Defensor Sporting

Estudiantes de La Plata (Arg) v Newell’s Old Boys (Arg)

WATCH HIGHLIGHTS OF THE 2009 COPA SUDAMERICANA FINAL, 1ST LEG HERE:

WATCH HIGHLIGHTS OF THE 2009 COPA SUDAMERICANA FINAL, 2ND LEG HERE:

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