The world’s game returns to the beautiful confines of Hard Rock Stadium Saturday night for yet another CONMEBOL showdown. Last year we were graced with a great matchup between Chile and Peru that brought out thousands of South American transplants. This weekend, expect the same as Venezuela and Ecuador look to give hope to their South Floridian fans ahead of this year’s Copa America.
These two countries have met before in South Florida with a 2017 clash at FAU. Two years ago, it was a 1-1 draw with Junior Moreno getting the equalizer in the first half after a Mikel Villanueva own goal for Venezuela. While attendance was sparse in Boca Raton, the contest at Hard Rock Stadium is selling quite well.
Copa America Tune-Up
In the 2016 version of the Copa America, hosted in the United States, both nations found themselves in the knockout rounds. The same couldn’t be said in 2015 as both nations found themselves going home early from Chile. Neither side has it easy in the 2019 edition as Venezuela have been grouped with Brazil, Bolivia, and Peru. Ecuador find themselves with Uruguay, Japan, and Chile. Both nations will likely have a great chance at finishing second but are sure to advance to the knockout rounds with two third place teams moving through.
Both sides hold massive talent both here in the United States and in Europe. Ecuador will be captained by former Manchester United fullback Antonio Valencia, while former Everton striker Enner Valencia (Tigres) will likely start up top. Venezuela have a few Premier League affiliations of their own with Salomon Rondon (Newcastle United) and midfielder Adalberto Peñaranda (Watford). MLS fans don’t need to be reminded of Josef Martinez’ finishing abilities for Atlanta and the contributions that Xavier Arreaga have brought to the Seattle Sounders. Check out the rosters for both nations and ticket information below!
Head coach: Hernán Darío Gómez (COL)
Goalkeepers: Alexander Domínguez – Vélez Sarfield (ARG); Máximo Banguera – Barcelona SC (ECU); Pedro Ortiz – Delfín SC (ECU)
Pedro Pablo Velasco – Barcelona SC (ECU); José Quintero – Liga de Quito (ECU); Robert Arboleda – Sao Paulo (BRA); Xavier Arreaga – Seattle Sounders (MLS); Gabriel Achilier – Morelia (MEX); Arturo Mina – Yeni Malatyaspor (TUR); Beder Caicedo – Barcelona SC (ECU); Cristian Ramírez – Krasnodar (RUS)
Antonio Valencia – Manchester United (ENG); Carlos Gruezo – FC Dallas (MLS); Jefferson Intriago – Liga de Quito (ECU); Jefferson Orejuela – Liga de Quito (ECU); Jhegson Méndez – Orlando City (MLS); Renato Ibarra – Club América (MEX); Ángel Mena – León (MEX); Ayrton Preciado – Santos Laguna (MEX); Andrés Chicaiza – Liga de Quito (ECU)
Enner Valencia – Tigres (MEX); Carlos Garcés – Delfín SC (ECU); Romario Ibarra – Minnesota United (MLS)
Head coach: Rafael Dudamel (VEN)
Rafael Romo – Apoel Nicosia (CYP); Joel Graterol – Zamora (VEN)
Ronald Hernández – Stabaek (NOR); Pablo Bonilla – Portuguesa (VEN); Yordan Osorio – V. Guimarães (POR); Nahuel Ferraresi – Peralada (SPA); Mikel Villanueva – Nástic (SPA); Jhon Chancellor – Al Ahli (QAT); Roberto Rosales – Espanyol (SPA); Luis Mago – Palestino (CHI)
Arquímedes Figuera – Dep. La Guaira (VEN); Yangel Herrera – Huesca (SPA); Luis Manuel Seijas – I. Santa Fe (COL); Juan Pablo Añor – Huesca (SPA); Renzo Zambrano – Portland Timbers (MLS); Bernaldo Manzano Depor. Lara – (VEN); Jhon Murillo – Tondela (POR); Adalberto Peñaranda – Watford (ENG); Samuel Sosa – Talleres (ARG); Erickson Gallardo – Zamora (COL)
Salomón Rondón – Newcastle (ENG); Jon Carlos Hurtado – Gimnasia (ARG); Jhonder Cádiz – V. Setúbal (POR)
Tickets are still available but they’re selling fast.