Chile won Copa América 2015

It took shootout to determine a goalless final between the home team Chile and Lionel Messi’s Argentina in the Copa América 2015. After two missed penalty kicks by Argentina, Chile became South American champions for the first time.

The final

Last time Argentina won the Copa América was in 1993. Chile had never managed to win the tournament. Now they had the chance at home. The finale was characterized by rough play and seven yellow cards were handed out. Neither team managed to score after 90 minutes. Gonzalo Higuain, who plays in Italian team Napoli, Series A, was closest to score, but missed the goal in the last minute of the game. After a goalless overtime shootout awaited. Matías Fernández scores his first for Chile and Lionel Messi tied to 1-1. After Arturo Vidal scored, Higuain missed. 2-1 Chile. In the third round of penalties Charles Aranguiz scored on his penalty while Ever Banega missed his which meant 3-1 Chile and that they would be champions at home if Alexis Sánchez scored on his penalty, which he did.

Copa América 2015

We have experienced a thrilling tournament in Chile with a lot of good teams. The giants Argentina and Brazil are certainly not alone at the top, there are a number of teams that can challenge them. Chile showed it by winning the gold, Peru got the bronze after 2-0 against Paraguay. Brazil were eliminated by Paraguay after a shootout in the quarterfinals and Argentina could have faced the same destiny against  Colombia, but managed to make it through to the semis. We have seen a number of stars on the pitch, Messi and Neymar was perhaps the most well-known before the tournament started. Neymar however, got a suspension and Messi has not delivered as much in Argentina’s offense as we hoped. Peru’s Paolo Guerrero and the Chilean Eduardo Vargas were the top scorers of the tournament with 4 goals each. There were a total of 59 goals in 26 games, which gives an average of ~ 2.3 goals per game.

Copa América 2019 is played in Brazil. Before that the Copa América Centenario will be played next summer, in the United States, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the South American Championships. In 1916 Argentina hosted the tournament and came second after Uruguay. In 2016 Messi and his teammates get another chance to win a title with the national team. The harvest of final losses for this generation of Argentine footballers is getting a bit to big…

It is time for finals in the FIFA Women’s World Cup and Copa América 2015

Two of this summer’s biggest football tournaments are to be decided this weekend: The Women’s World Cup and the South American Championships, Copa América 205.

FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015: Japan vs USA in the final – a rerun of 2011 and 2012

July 5, Japan and USA will play the final of the Women’s World Cup of football 2015, just like they did in 2011. Then, Japan won after a dramatic overtime and penalty shootout. The year after, the teams met again in the final of the 2012 London Summer Olympics. That time, USA won 2-1. England and Germany will play for the bronze.

The semifinals

Both semifinals were decided by kind of odd events. If we start with USA versus Germany, the first half belonged to team USA. Germany was pressured, just as they were in the quarterfinal against France. For some reason, this is how the matches have looked like for Germany this year. They are usually a team machine over 90 minutes but something has not been quite right this tournament. However, with 30 minutes to go of the game, they got the chance to take the lead through a penalty shot. As usual, Celia Sasic stepped forward to take the shot. However, this time, she missed. Instead, it was USA who got the deciding goal from the penalty spot after a questionable decision by the referee. Alex Morgan ran into Annike Krahn outside the penalty box and for some reason the referee called for a penalty shot for USA. Carli Lloyd scored 1-0. In the 84th minute Kelley O Hara increased the lead to 2-0 and USA went through.

In the match between Japan and England, there were two penalties as well. Aya Miyama put her penalty shot away in the 33rd minute and Fara Williams tied the game seven minutes later. England put up a good fight against the current champions. The ending became a bitter tale though. At 90 minutes +2, England’s Laura Bassett attempted to clear the ball but instead put it into the crossbar and into her own net. 2-1 Japan and a devastated Bassett. England has done a good tournament though, eliminating Norway and Canada in the play offs.

Chicken Swedes held Germany as winners throughout the tournament. The final between Japan and USA should be a tight game and it is hard to bet on a winner here. However, Chicken Swedes place our money on USA. If they win, we can at least say that our national team played a tied match against the world champions in this tournament. 🙂

Chile versus Argentina in the 2015 Copa América final

July 4th the final of Copa América is played between Argentina and Chile. Both teams played an impressive game in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Argentina are favourites to becoming South American champions. However, they haven’t won Copa América since 1993. They lost the World Cup final against Germany last year.

The road to the final

Chile reached the final by winning their group, beating Ecuador 2-0, tied against Mexico (3-3) and crushing Bolivia 5-0. In the play offs they beat Uruguay 1-0 in a match most remembered for some dirty scenes we are hoping won’t repeat themself in the final. In the semifinal they beat Peru 2-1.

Argentina’s road to the final has been through few goals, except for in the semifinal. They won their group by playing a tied game (2-2) against Paraguay and two 1-0 victories against Uruguay and Jamaica. No goals from Lionel Messi in the group stage. However, in the play offs he scored his penalty shot when the goalless quarterfinal against Colombia was to be decided. He also did a good match in the semifinal where the team got their goal scoring going, beating Paraguay 6-1.

Although it will be a tight game, we believe that it is time for Argentina and Lionel Messi to win a title this year.

Semifinals in Copa América and FIFA Women’s World Cup, final in the U21 European Championships

The play offs in the football tournaments this summer continuous. Four teams are ready for semifinals in Copa América and FIFA Women’s World Cup, while Sweden and Portugal will play the final in the FIFA Under 21 European Championships.

Argentina favourites for winning Copa América

The quarterfinals in Copa América have been played. Both Argentina’s and Brazil’s matches had to be decided by penalty shootouts. While Argentina came out on top against Colombia, Brazil lost against Paraguay. Chile beat Uruguay in a match that will mostly be remembered for a disgusting move from Chile’s Gonzalo Jara against Uruguay’s Edinson Cavani. While Cavani got a red card for slapping Jara, anyone that sees the clip below will understand why Cavani reacted the way he did. In the semifinals Chile will play against Peru June 30th, who won against Bolivia 3-1. Argentina will play Paraguay July 1st. From these teams, Lionel Messi’s Argentina are probably the strongest team, even if they have had problems getting their goal scoring going.

Germany eliminated France in the best game of the Women’s World Cup so far

In the Women’s World Cup in Canada the quarterfinals have been played and we have seen some tight matches, all decided by the odd goal, except for the match between Germany and France which had to be decided by penalty shootout. Carli Lloyd scored the only goal between USA and China in the 51:st minute. Japan continuous to win by the odd goal, beating Australia by 1-0. England eliminated the host nation Canada with a solid 2-1 win.

The match between France and Germany really was something to remember. France dominated the first half by playing a quick and creative offensive game. Germany was under pressure and it was pure luck that the standing after the first half was 0-0. In the second half, Germany could move the game up fields a bit, but could not produce any really chances on their offense. Instead, France scored 1-0 in the 64th minute. As the game progressed, it looked like France should come out on top. However, in a German attack, the ball hit the arm of a France defender which led to a penalty shot. Celia Sasic did no mistake and the match was tied 1-1 in the 84th minute. 30 minutes of overtime was ahead, and the phase continued to be high. Players limbed, bled and fought all over the field. France was closest to get a decider at the end of the second overtime quarter but failed to convert. Instead, it would take a shootout to core a winner.

In the shootout, the quality of the game was still high. We got to see hard, well placed penalty kicks. After four rounds all penalties were scored. Sasic scored her second goal of the game in the fifth. The last shooter for France was 21-year old Claire Lavogez. She was under pressure to score against 36-year old German veteran Nadine Angerer. However, her penalty was weak, Angerer throwed herself in the right direction and Germany prevailed. This was by far the best match of the tournament so far. High phase, great defense, goaltending and battles all over the field.

Germany will face team USA in the semifinal June 30 and Japan will play England July 1.

Sweden versus Portugal in the U21 final

In the European U21 Championships, Sweden will play the final against Portugal. Portugal are favourites after crushing Germany 5-0 in the semi final while Sweden made sure to score on all their chances against their nordic neighbours Denmark, winning 4-1. Sweden were underdogs in the semifinal and are underdogs in the final. If they win it will be a sensational victory for Swedish football who has been struggling to produce new talents from the generation after Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Henrik Larsson, Fredrik Ljungberg and other players. No matter how the final will end, there is hope for a bright future for Swedish football!

Summer of football/soccer 2015: play offs!

In 2015 three major football tournaments are played around the world: FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada, Under 21 European Championships in Czech Republic and Copa América in Chile. The playoffs have begun in all tournaments:

FIFA Women’s World Cup

The first round of the play offs (16) has been played and with Swedish eyes we can state that Sweden sadly didn’t went through to the quarter finals this time. They got beat by Germany 4-1 fair and square and the yellow and blues didn’t reach normal standard in this tournament. However, since many other European teams also didn’t make it to the next round, Sweden will be able to qualify to the Olympic games in Brazil 2016. The qualifiers are played between Sweden, Norway (who got beat by England 2-1), Netherlands (lost against Japan 2-1) and Switzerland (lost against the host nation Canada 1-0). In the other matches, China won against the only African team in the play offs, Cameroon, 1-0. United States eliminated Colombia 2-0 and Australia managed to eliminated Brazil 1-0 which means there are no South American teams left in the tournament. France won against South Korea 3-0.

This gives us the following quarterfinals:

China – USA
Germany – France
Australia – Japan
England – Canada

While we though Norway would reach the finals in an earlier post, now we have to replace them with Japan. However, Germany still stands as heavy favourites to the gold.

U21 European Championships

Unlike in the Women’s World Cup, in the European U21 Championships Sweden have made success with a second place in their group, which means a) semifinal against Denmark and b) a spot in the 2016 Olympic games in Brazil where the team might get a supreme reinforcement in Zlatan Ibrahimovic (every team in the tournament can have three players over 21 years of age). The other semifinal is played between Portugal and Germany. Both matches are played June 27. The final is played July 5.

Copa América

The play offs in Copa América have just begun. We will update the results in a later post as the quarterfinals progress. In the first matches Chile and Peru have advanced by beating Uruguay and Bolivia. In the other half of the play off tree, Argentina will play Colombia and Brazil Paraguay. Chances are we will see Lionel Messi face a Brazil without suspended Neymar in the semifinal.

Football/soccer, summer 2015

This is an old post describing football events of 2015. The winners of the below tournaments were:

Copa América: Chile
U21 European Championship: Sweden!
FIFA Women’s World Cup: Team USA
UEFA 2016: Portugal

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Before 2015 many of us thought that this summer would become a middle-year between FIFA World Cup 2014 and the 2016 UEFA Championships. That’s not quite right. In this post we summarize the hottest tournaments of summer 2015: Copa América, U21-European Championships, FIFA Women’s World Cup and the UEFA qualifiers. Below we describe each tournament shortly with dates and links to more info.

Copa América

Description: Copa América is the South American championships of football. This years the tournament is held in Chile and you have the opportunity to see Lionel Messi, Neymar and other superstars fight for the gold. The winner also gets to play in the 2017 Confederations Cup in Russia.

When: June 11 – July 4.

U21 European Championship

Description: Eight U21-teams participate in the  Under 21 European Championships. Except for the gold medal, spots in the 2016 Olympic games in Brazil is at stake.

When: 17-30 June.

FIFA Women’s World Cup

Description: The highest ranked women’s tournament is on! We look forward watching some high quality football as Germany, USA and Brazil and the other participating teams are fighting for the gold in Canada.

When: June 6 – July 5.

UEFA 2016 qualifiers

Description: The European teams are fighting for spots in the 2016 European Championships in France.

Date: 12-14 June.
More info: UEFA.

With all this football action, it doesn’t matter if the weather this summer is so-so. Let it rain and stay inside and watch some great football action!

Copa América 2015: schedule and fixtures

Messi

Copa América is the battle for south America, similar to the UEFA European Championships. The tournament is played every fourth year and this summer it is hosted by Chile. In 2011 the tournament was played in Argentina and Uruguay won after beating Paraguay 3-0 in the final. In this post you will find fixtures/schedules for the 2015 Copa América. As expected, it is a tough tournament with many strong teams.

Schedule

The tournament is played in three groups with four teams. The two top teams in each group and the two best third placed teams will reach the quarterfinals.

Date – Teams

Group A

12/6 – Chile – Ecuador
13/6 – Mexico – Bolivia
15/6 – Ecuador – Bolivia
16/6 – Chile – Mexico
19/6 – Mexico – Ecuador
20/6 – Chile – Bolivia

Group B

13/6 – Uruguay – Jamaica
13/6 – Argentina – Paraguay
16/6 – Paraguay – Jamaica
17/6 – Argentina – Uruguay
20/6 – Uruguay – Paraguay
20/6 – Argentina – Jamaica

Group C

14/6 – Colombia – Venezuela
14/6 – Brazil – Peru
18/6 – Brazil – Colombia
19/6 – Peru – Venezuela
21/6 – Colombia – Peru
21/6 – Brazil – Venezuela

Quarterfinals

25/6 – Winner A – Third A/B/C
26/6 – Winner A – Second C
27/6 – Winner B – Third A/B/C
28/6 – Winner C – Second B

Semifinals

30/6 – Winner K1 – Winner K2
1/7 – Winner K3 – Winner K4

Bronze game

4/7 – Loser S1 – Loser S2

Final

4/7 – Winner S1 – Winner S2