Copa America: Chile- Peru
With Brazil, who have always been a bogey team for Chile out of the competition and Argentina facing a rematch with a Paraguayan side they struggled with at the group stage tomorrow, things are starting to look hugely promising for the hosts, but with that comes added pressure, the level of expectation is through the roof and now, failure to reach the final will be seen as a bit of a disaster and if Peru can hang on in there early, they can use that to their advantage. Peru have looked very well organised at these championships and were comfortable quarter final winners over Bolivia, ahead of which I wrote ......"Peru have looked very solid keeping Colombia and Venuezuela scoreless and Brazil at 1-1 (after two early goals) for 87 minutes. They do not have any real weaknesses, look good in defence and midfield and have three veteran forwards in Paolo Guerrero, Jefferson Farfan and Claudio Pizarro who are all the wrong side of thirty and playing in what might be their last major championship, the trio have all played at the top level in Europe and have 60 international goals between them and can find a goal and one might be enough, to edge this. Peru feel they are improving and have more to offer and I would have been very keen on them for this if they were not without captain Carlos Labatón and defensive midfielder Josepmir Ballón, who are both suspended. That kind of tempers enthusiasm, but they are in their 7th straight Copa quarter final and will be looking to at least equal their 2011 3rd place finish. They were not adventurous enough in the semi final against Uruguay that year and I feel they will have learned from that.
They were 2-0 up inside the first quarter of the game, had a whopping 27 attempts on goal (hitting the woodwork twice) and Paolo Guerrero scored a hat trick, before Bolivia made the scoreline respectable with a late consolation goal, it was an impressive victory and this is a team on the up and improving game upon game. Chilean centre back Gonzalo Jara is suspended after putting his finger where it should not be put (!) and the hosts conceded two goals at home to the US in the only start he has missed in 2015. Mexico are the only team who have really taken the game to Chile in this competition and they scored three without the cream of their offensive talent and if Peru are prepared to have a go, I can definitely see a goal or maybe two for them and I am very keen on the "away" team with the handicap start. Peru use both flanks well and could create havoc in the box, with a big aerial advantage over Chile and I have to take .............. Peru +1 ball 2.03 asian line/Sportmarket.
Gary Medel and David Pizzaro ended the Bolivia game in the middle of the backline for Chile, they are each 1.71m tall, Guerrero and Claudio Pizzaro are both 1.84m + and this could be a real route to goal for Peru, who are a very tempting 6.5-7.0 general quote to score twice ("over" 1.5 goals) , how about something small on that....