Sunday, April 22, 2018

Chile v Bolivia: Top spot up for grabs in Group A

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 18 Jun 2015


Bolivia can beat Copa America Group A leaders and host nation Chile to top spot, according to defender Edward Zenteno.

Friday sees Chile and Bolivia go head-to-head at Estadio Nacional Julio Martinez Pradanos, with only goal difference separating the two nations in Santiago.

Chile (+2) and Bolivia (+1) are both level on four points from two matches after the hosts played out a thrilling 3-3 draw against invitees Mexico last time out, while Bolivia saw off Ecuador 3-2.

Goals to Ronald Raldes, Martin Smedberg-Dalence and Marcelo Moreno helped Bolivia to only their second win in 18 fixtures and confidence is now high within the dressing room.

“We want to finish first in the group, we know it will be tough,” Zenteno told reporters.

“The aim is to do good things on Friday and go through as the best in the group.

“We are happy, but we will not lower our guard. We are mentally prepared to have a good performance in every game – the confidence is there.”

Chile come into the final group match with a less-than-ideal build up.

Star midfielder and Copa America’s top goalscorer with three goals, Arturo Vidal, had his driver’s licence revoked for drink-driving after he was involved in a car crash, while driving under the influence of alcohol on Tuesday.

There were reports Chile would expel Vidal from the tournament, though coach Jorge Sampaoli ultimately decided to keep the 28-year-old with the team.

However, there is another headache for Sampaoli in the form of Alexis Sanchez.

Sanchez underwent an MRI after feeling pain in his right leg and the forward could miss Friday’s showdown in the Chilean capital.

History is against Bolivia in this fixture, having failed to win their past eight games against Chile.

Bolivia have not beaten Chile since 2000, when they triumphed 1-0 in a World Cup qualifier.


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