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Argentina plays Colombia in Copa America Quarterfinals

June 24, 2015

Lionel Messi will meet James Rodriguez yet again. The two have left their professional clubs behind and now are wearing the colors of their countries. Messi, who plays for Barcelona and Rodriguez for Real Madrid in Spain’s topflight league La Liga, will face one another in the quarterfinals of Copa America when Messi’s Argentina plays Rodriguez’s Colombia on Friday.

Of the four matches this week in the quarterfinals, Friday’s Argentina against Colombia is the most intriguing and compelling. This title has been won by Argentina 14 times and the Argentine’s with Messi, Sergio Aguero, Carlos Tevez and Gonzalo Higuain have the tournament’s most talented group of attackers.

Colombia won this tournament just once but it is likely South America’s rising power on the football pitch. Jose Pekerman, who is from Argentina, is the team manager for the Colombians. He has his own group of talented attackers in Rodriguez, Jackson Martinez and Radamel Falcao.

The championship of South America is considered by the participants as a mini-World Cup. Of the eight quarterfinalists, five reached the final 16 at last year’s World Cup, 3 played in the quarterfinals and Argentina lost in the final to Germany.

Sportsbooks currently have Argentina favored at -114 with Colombia sitting on +325. A draw is paying +240, while the goal total is 2.5.

Neither club played great in the group stage. Many players are tired from long seasons that just completed in Europe. The managers for both sides are worried about the inability of their teams to put the ball in the net

Colombia defeated Brazil during the group stage but barely made it out to the knockout stages.

The rivalries however amongst these South American clubs have caused a number of fireworks on and off the pitch. Neymar the talented attacker for Barcelona and Brazil was suspended from the tournament after having an altercation following Brazil’s loss to Colombia.

The other quarterfinals are Wednesday Chile vs. Uruguay, Thursday Bolivia vs. Peru and on Saturday Brazil vs. Paraguay.