There are a lot of firsts involved in the 2015 Copa America final at the Estadio Nacional Julio Martínez Prádanos on Saturday as Chile will try to win their first Copa trophy while Argentina, 14-time Copa winners, will have Lionel Messi chasing his first international trophy with his country.
These two teams scored more goals than other sides in Chile and have made the most of the possession they have had with the highest pass success.
Home advantage or disadvantage
Chile have been buoyed into the final with raucous support from the home fans and there will be a wild party if they triumph over Argentina on Saturday as scenes have shown with their victories so far. But playing at home in a major final also has its own pressures and Coach Jorge Sampaoli will be hoping that the tension does not get to his players and inhibit their performance on their big day.
|Head to head|
|17/10/12||WQS||Chile||1 – 2||Argentina|
|08/10/11||WQS||Argentina||4 – 1||Chile|
|16/10/08||WQS||Chile||1 – 0||Argentina|
|13/10/07||WQS||Argentina||2 – 0||Chile|
|17/04/07||FRI||Argentina||0 – 0||Chile|
Messi is in prime condition
Though Messi has scored just once in this tournament, he has five assists and he was majestic in the 6-1 thumping of Paraguay in the semi-final. He showed that he can be the conductor of the Argentina orchestra and one thing is certain – he will go for goal if his team mates find it difficult to get past Chile’s goalkeeper, Claudio Bravo, a Barcelona mate.
So it is delicately poised for the two teams as their results at the tournament mirror each other. Chile have scored 13 goals and conceded four while Argentina have scored 10 and conceded three. They also had one thumping win each; Chile trounced Bolivia 5-0, while Argentina thrashed Paraguay 6-1 in the semi-final.
Both also have match winners all over the pitch even though Chile’s Alexis Sanchez is yet to have a truly imperious performance, one that his countrymen will be hoping he comes up with on Saturday.
This could turn out to be a dull encounter because there is just too much to lose. Chile on home ground and Argentina for the second consecutive tournament would not like to go home as losers.
|Probable Starting XIs|
|1||Claudio Bravo||Sergio Romero|
|2||Eugenio Mena||Pablo Zabaleta|
|3||Gary Medel||Marcus Rojo|
|4||Miiko Albornoz||Nicolas Otamendi|
|5||Mauricio Isla||Ezequiel Garay|
|6||Marcelo Diaz||Javier Mascherano|
|7||Charles Aranguiz||Lucas Biglia|
|8||Arturo Vidal||Javier Pastore|
|9||Jorge Valdivia||Angel Di Maria|
|10||Alexis Sanchez||Lionel Messi|
|11||Eduardo Vargas||Sergio Aguero|