CONMEBOL has confirmed the 2021 Copa America will go ahead as planned, with Brazil taking over hosting duties.
This year’s edition of the tournament – postponed from 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic – had been due to be shared between Colombia and Argentina.
However, Colombia lost co-hosting status amid mounting political unrest in the country, while the event then needed to find a new location after a surge in coronavirus cases ruled out playing games in Argentina.
CONMEBOL met on Monday to determine the future of the competition, electing to move the tournament to Brazil, who were crowned champions on home soil in 2019.
A post from the governing body’s official Twitter account read: “The CONMEBOL Copa America 2021 will be played in Brazil!
“Tournament start and end dates are confirmed. The venues and the fixture will be informed by CONMEBOL in the next few hours. The oldest national team tournament in the world will make the whole continent vibrate!”
The tournament will run from June 13 to July 10, though further details over locations and the exact schedule are to be released in the near future.
However, the decision to move the Copa to Brazil does not come without controversy.
The nation has been one of the worst hit by the COVID-19 health crisis with nearly 460,000 deaths, according to figures from the World Health Organisation.
CONMEBOL’s decision also comes in the aftermath of protesters in cities across the country calling for Jair Bolsonaro’s impeachment, with Brazil’s president having previously played down the severity of the virus and also questioned the importance of vaccinations.
“The best soccer in the world will bring joy and passion to millions of South Americans,” CONMEBOL added in a further tweet.
“CONMEBOL thanks the president Jair Bolsonaro and his team, as well as the Brazilian Football Confederation for opening the doors of that country to what is today the safest sporting event in the world.
“South America will shine in Brazil with all its stars!”
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