Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Deja vu in South American qualifying
by Paul Kennedy, October 12th, 2007 7AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

TAGS:  argentina, brazil, world cup


South America officials didn't wait until the 2010 World Cup qualifying draw to begin the long road to the finals in South Africa, and they didn't waste time figuring out the schedule.

If the 2010 qualifying schedule looks familiar to fans, it's because it is the same as was used for the 2002 and 2006 qualifiers!

That means Argentina hosts Chile Saturday and Brazil travels to Colombia Sunday in this weekend's top matches.

Not only was the schedule the same for the last two qualifying tournaments, but the outcome was the same.

On both occasions, the same four teams -- Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Ecuador -- qualified for the finals, while Uruguay finished fifth to earn a playoff against Australia.

CONMEBOL, the South America confederation, resisted pressure from European clubs, who employ most of the best players, to change the format for 2010. That means 18 games played over the next 24 months.

Once again, all 10 teams compete in one pool for four automatic spots in the World Cup finals. The fifth-place team will face CONCACAF's fourth-place team in a playoff. The South American marathon kicks off with the first of nine double fixtures this weekend and Wednesday.

(TV Note: Besides live and delayed coverage on GolTV, the South American qualifiers will also be available in theaters on closed circuit, on pay-per-view on DISH Network and for a fee online at JUMPTV.)

Here's a look at this weekend's openers:

ARGENTINA-CHILE. Marcelo Bielsa, who coached Argentina for six years and led it to the gold medal at the 2004 Olympics, has taken over as Chile's coach for World Cup qualifying. Argentina coach Coco Basile has largely stuck with the same team that finished second at this summer's Copa America. That means Juan Roman Riquelme should be in the starting lineup even though he hasn't yet played since returning to Spanish club Villarreal from Boca Juniors.

URUGUAY-BOLIVIA (GolTV, live, 2:30 pm ET). D.C. United's Jaime Moreno has joined Bolivia, which also features former MLS midfielder Jocelito Vaca. Luis Suarez, the 20-year-old Ajax striker, is expected to line up in a three-man frontline for Uruguay along with Diego Forlan and Sebastian Abreu.

ECUADOR-VENEZUELA. Ecuador and Venezuela are coached by Luis Fernando Suarez and Richard Paez, respectively. They are the only two coaches to have survived since the end of the previous qualifiers two years ago. Ecuador will be led by 33-year-old Ivan Hurtado, who will be taking part in his fifth qualifying tournament.

PERU-PARAGUAY. Indicative of the complications of getting players back for qualifying, Peru coach Jose del Solar called up players playing on clubs in 13 different countries -- 10 of them in Europe. Roque Santa Cruz, who played so well for Paraguay at the Copa America, is out with a knee injury and unavailable for the match.

COLOMBIA-BRAZIL. The big question for Brazil concerns Coach Dunga's choice for center forward. With Ronaldo and Adriano out of the picture, Fred was the obvious choice, but he is injured. That leaves No. 4 and No. 5 choices Vagner Love and Afonso Alves as the leading candidates. Neither has sparkled in a Brazil uniform. Vagner Love, who plays for CSKA Moscow, has three goals in 17 games. Afonso, who scored seven goals last Sunday for Dutch club Heerenveen, has scored one goal in seven games.

No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now



Recent Soccer America Daily
MLS Cup Playoffs: Schedule    
The MLS playoffs move into the conference semifinals with the first leg on Sunday. The four ...
What They're Saying: Nelson Valdez    
"I've been feeling like there's been a big mountain on top of me all season. Finally, ...
Report: Heaps will be back with Revs in 2017    
The New England Revolution have retained head coach Jay Heaps for a sixth season, despite its ...
MLS Playoffs: Sporting KC demands apology from league    
Sporting Kansas City did everything possible but score against Seattle, which was saved time and again ...
MLS Moves: Conor Casey calls it quits    
One of the strongest, most rugged forwards ever produced by American soccer has decided to end ...
Hex Files: Boniek Garcia called up by Honduras    
At least one Dynamo will be active during the MLS playoffs. Midfielder Oscar Boniek Garcia has ...
MLS Playoffs: No Drogba, no problem for Impact    
Didier Drogba didn't travel with his teammates to Washington, but he did make it to RFK ...
Video Pick: Patrice Evra does dancing panda    
Juventus' French star Patrice Evra dances and raps in a panda suit to send the "Say ...
What They're Saying: Landon Donovan    
"If [Lionel] Messi scored a goal like that, people would be talking about it for weeks. ...
USWNT: Five regulars return for Romania series    
U.S. women's national team coach Jill Ellis recalled five regulars who had sat out the Switzerland ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives