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The maximum continental competition of South America began with high expectations and eight groups, mostly very even, that promise many emotions
On February 28, all the members of the Copa Libertadores de América 2019 were defined. Atlético Mineiro from Brazil, Melgar from Peru, Libertad from Paraguay and Palestino from Chile were the last teams to join the great contenders of this edition of the Cup. How were the groups formed, which are the most prominent and which is the famous `group of death'?
Leer en español: ¡Arrancó la Copa Libertadores 2019! conozca los detalles del torneo
Groups of great difficulty
The draw and the subsequent previous phases of the cup resulted in high-level groups. Group A made up of River Plate from Argentina, Internacional from Porto Alegre from Brazil, Alianza Lima from Peru and Palestino from Chile suggests an even level, although the reigning American champion and the Brazilian team have a bit of an advantage. "We do not have an accessible group. Many times we have easy thinking, but each game must be played, "said Marcelo Gallardo, River Plate coach, at a press conference. In the first date, International beat Palestino as a visitor, while in Lima, the Alliance achieved a great draw against the current monarch of the competition.
Group D, made up of Peñarol from Uruguay, Flamengo from Brazil, Liga de Quito from Ecuador and San José from Bolivia is also a group of extreme difficulty. Group H has great teams that will fight real battles since they are made up of the brave Gremio of Brazil, the Catholic University of Chile, Rosario Central of Argentina and Libertad of Paraguay.
Likewise, Group E promises to be very close, even if it does not have a clear favorite to reach the desired title. In it is the fierce National of Uruguay, the always combative Cerro Porteño of Paraguay, the Zamora of Venezuela and the talented Atlético Mineiro of Brazil. Cerro Porteño and Nacion came out victorious on the first date.
The Group G also gathered great teams that will provide a good show, since it is the runner-up of the previous edition, Boca Juniors of Argentina, the champion of the Copa Sudamericana 2018, Atlético Paranaense, in addition to Jorge Wilstermann of Bolivia and Deportes Tolima from Colombia. "You have to start the cup well, it's important," said Carlos Tevez, Boca striker, who also said that "you have to leave your life on the court."
There are teams whose luck helped them to be located in groups of medium difficulty. Group B has the powerful Cruzeiro of Brazil, which must play against Emelec of Ecuador, Hurricane of Argentina and Deportivo Lara of Venezuela. It is clear that the Brazilian team has the best chances of qualifying as first in the group.
In the same way, Group C gathered teams that did not start as favorites at the beginning: Olimpia from Paraguay, Sporting Cristal from Peru, Godoy Cruz from Argentina and Universidad de Concepción from Chile. According to AS Peru, the first date brought maximum equality between Argentines and Paraguayans and a vibrant match between Chileans and Peruvians, with a final score of 5-4 favorable to the australes. This shows a very similar level among all the components of the area.
`Group of Death'
As usual, in all the editions of the Copa Libertadores de América, a group of extreme difficulty is baptized as `The group of Death.' On this occasion this qualifier is received by Group F since it is formed by the powerful Brazilian club Palmeiras, which today can be the best Colombian team of the moment, the Junior of Barranquilla, the always competitive Argentine club San Lorenzo and the surprise Melgar from Peru.
According to BeSoccer, the Palmeiras of Brazil is a clear favorite to the title in this edition of the cup. The club hopes to overcome last year's elimination in the semifinals. Similarly, Junior arrives as champion of the Colombian League and as runner-up of the Copa Sudamericana 2018. San Lorenzo for its tradition and Melgar for its youth, add another degree of difficulty that will complicate everything in this group.
The Copa Libertadores de América has started in style, and the panorama of all the clubs is difficult. The first day gave us great emotions and high goals. This has barely begun and it has already been demonstrated that all the teams will deploy all their power to reach the grand finale of November at the National Stadium of Chile, in what will be the first edition with a single match final.
LatinAmerican Post | Javier Aldana
Translated from "¡Arrancó la Copa Libertadores 2019! conozca los detalles del torneo"