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'Historic announcement' on Centenario is expected Thursday
by Paul Kennedy, April 28th, 2014 5:11PM
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[2016 COPA AMERICA] Concacaf and Conmebol, the South American confederation, will hold a joint press conference on Thursday morning in Miami to make "a historic announcement" that is expected to be the organization of a centennial edition of the Copa America in 2016 in the United States.
The press conference will include Concacaf President Jeffrey Webb and Conmebol President Eugenio Figueredo Aguerre. Former stars from Concacaf and Conmebol countries are also expected to be on hand for the announcement at the St. Regis Hotel.

Conmebol has been seeking for several years to finalize plans for a centennial event. In 2012, it announced plans for the "Centenario" involving all 10 Conmebol nations, the host USA and Mexico, plus four other Concacaf teams completing the field for a 16-team competition. But Concacaf said the announcement was premature as Conmebol quickly backtracked as commercial aspects of the event -- television rights, sponsorship rights, ticket sales -- were not finalized.

Spanish sports daily Marca reported in January that six U.S. stadiums would be used for the event: Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.), Stanford Stadium (Palo Alto, Calif.), MetLife Stadium (East Rutherford, N.J.), Florida Citrus Bowl (Orlando, Fla.), RFK Stadium (Washington, D.C.) and Reliant Stadium (Houston).

The unknown is the timing of the event. The event needs FIFA's approval for national teams to field their full squads. Both Concacaf and Conmebol will organize their regional championships in 2013.

As it stands now, the only 2016 FIFA fixture dates in the period being considered for the tournament are May 30-June 7. The dates for Euro 2016 in France are June 10-July 10.

That corresponding dates in 2012 were used for Concacaf teams to play the first two games of the semifinal round of World Cup qualifying and for South American teams to play matchdays 5 and 6 of their marathon qualifying tournament.

Teams will have to also consider what kind of squad to send to the Centenario if they have qualified for the 2016 Olympics later in the summer in Brazil, where under-23 players plus three wild-card players are used.

  1. Alexander Lozano
    commented on: April 28, 2014 at 7:24 p.m.
    Been waiting for this announcement to become "official"! It might not be the World Cup but would be the biggest soccer tournament to be hosted by the USA since the 1994 World Cup IMO! My biggest concern is that all 16 nations are "required" to field their strongest's vital that the top teams play, otherwise, it will be a "glorified" tournament.
  1. Gus Keri
    commented on: April 28, 2014 at 9:23 p.m.
    It's going to be the busiest summer ever. The Euro, the Olympics, Copa America, MLS and international friendlies (clubs and national teams). Am I missing any thing?
  1. Bram Weiser
    commented on: April 28, 2014 at 10:34 p.m.
    Quote...Both Concacaf and Conmebol will organize their regional championships in 2013...Unquote. Either you meant that they DID organize them in 2013, or perhaps that they WILL organize them in some future year (2015 perhaps?) However, the sentence, as written, is simply incorrect. How'd your editor miss it? Sincerely, Bram Weiser
  1. Bram Weiser
    commented on: April 28, 2014 at 10:36 p.m.
    ...and how do the chances of CONCACAF sides getting permanent admission into CONMEBOL's Copa Libertadores and/or creation of some other form of "hemispheric" club championship look? Neither this article, nor the official event announcement in advance of tomorrow's news conference, say anything about that...
  1. Gus Keri
    commented on: April 29, 2014 at 7:49 a.m.
    Bram, I believe it was a typo. It was suppose to be 2015. Both the Gold Cup and Copa America will be held in 2015.

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