2019 COPA Preview: Messi looks to lead Argentina to elusive Gold Cup title

By Donald Oilver May 24, 2019

Argentina and Colombia favourites to advance from Group B.

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  • Richarlison encourages Neres to make Everton move Richarlison encourages Neres to make Everton move

    Richarlison has told Brazil team-mate and Ajax star David Neres to join him at Everton.

    Eredivisie champions Ajax face a fight to keep hold of winger Neres, 22, after an excellent season won him admirers across Europe.

    Neres scored crucial Champions League goals against Real Madrid and Juventus en route to the semi-finals and is reportedly on Arsenal's transfer radar.

    Everton, however, are believed to be the frontrunners for his signature and Richarlison wants his compatriot to make the move to Goodison Park.

    "I've spoken to him about it already," Richarlison told the Liverpool Echo in the aftermath of Brazil's win over Bolivia at the Copa America, in which both players started.

    "I told him the doors are open for him there, and that he could help us a lot.

    "I hope he comes. He'd be very welcome there. I've known him since we played together for Brazil Under-20 side, and he's a guy I get along with really well.

    "Hopefully I'll see him there."

    With 23 domestic goals in the past two campaigns, Neres appears to have outgrown the Eredivisie and could be ready for a dream switch to England.

    He said: "Of course the Premier League interests me. It's the best league in the world, and I've always wanted to play there.

    "But I leave all that in God's hands."

  • Venezuela 0 Peru 0: Points shared despite late Mago dismissal Venezuela 0 Peru 0: Points shared despite late Mago dismissal

    Venezuela held on with 10 men to secure a 0-0 draw against Peru in a largely lacklustre Copa America encounter in Porto Alegre on Saturday.

    Luis Mago's 75th-minute dismissal for a second bookable offence gave Peru hope of snatching all three points but a stalemate always seemed the likely conclusion between two evenly matched teams.

    Ricardo Gareca's side did have the ball in the net on two occasions, only for offside decisions to deny Christofer Gonzales and Jefferson Farfan either side of half-time.

    Both teams now move a point ahead of Bolivia, who lost 3-0 to Brazil in the tournament opener.

    Peru appeared to have an early opener when midfielder Gonzales buried a loose ball, but a VAR review showed Renato Tapia to have been offside as he challenged Venezuela goalkeeper Wuilker Farinez.

    Christian Cueva and Salomon Rondon failed to take good chances either side of the 20-minute mark, while a poor Farinez punch forced Tomas Rincon to make a crucial block towards the end of a first half blighted by stoppages.

    More fluent passages of play after the interval brought only wayward finishing until Peru forward Farfan nodded in Edison Flores' left-sided cross.

    The latter had strayed offside before delivering the cross, however, and there was to be no winner even after Mago's second yellow card, with Farinez redeeming his earlier efforts by making a fine close-range save from lively substitute Flores.

     

    What does it mean? More possible from Peru

    Having reached the quarter-finals at the Centenario edition in 2016, and as a team that has spent 12 months building on a World Cup appearance, Peru will be especially disappointed not to have taken all three points.

    Their level of performance will need to improve if they are to challenge the big nations at this tournament.

    Advincula an important outlet for Peru

    Venezuela's left side struggled with the mighty task of stopping Peru's barnstorming right-back Luis Advincula, whose pace and positivity gave his team a constant attacking option out wide.

    Farinez fortunate to avoid first-half punishment

    He did well in the end to earn a clean sheet by denying Flores but other teams in the tournament are sure to bombard Venezuela keeper Farinez with aerial balls after his unconvincing attempts at claiming crosses in the first half almost led to two Peru goals.

    What's next?

    Venezuela face hosts Brazil in Bahia on Tuesday as Peru head to Rio de Janeiro to meet Bolivia.

  • Maybe I can fit in at Manchester United - Brazil forward Everton open to future move Maybe I can fit in at Manchester United - Brazil forward Everton open to future move

    Brazil and Gremio forward Everton has talked up a move to Manchester United by suggesting his playing style may suit the Premier League.

    The 23-year-old scored a late stunner to seal Brazil's 3-0 win over Bolivia in Friday's Copa America opener, adding to Philippe Coutinho's brace.

    Everton made his nine minutes on the field count at Estadio do Morumbi to further enhance his reputation as he cut inside from the left and sent the ball flying past Carlos Lampe.

    And after opening his account for the Brazil senior side, Everton eyed up a move to a big European club, with Old Trafford a possible destination.

    "I'm a player that's always trying to get on top [of the opposition]," he told the Daily Mail.

    "Cutting in from the left with dribbles and good finishes - clubs in Europe have this style of play. Maybe I can fit in at Manchester United and others."

    Everton, capped seven times by Brazil, has scored three goals for Gremio in the Copa Libertadores this season and seven times in the domestic league.

    He has also been linked with a move to Manchester City and AC Milan in recent months.

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