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Everything you need to know about each Copa America group

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With Copa America 2024 just days away, we're taking a deep dive into all four groups, highlighting the star players to watch, examining the biggest storylines to follow, and offering predictions for how things may play out. Here's everything you need to know about every group at the tournament.

Group A 🇦🇷🇨🇦🇨🇱🇵🇪

The World Cup champion and Copa America holder takes to the United States to defend its South American crown - and it's the overwhelming favorite to do so. Now that the pressure to deliver silverware while Lionel Messi is around is over, Argentina is playing with ever-increasing confidence and has surged to the top of the standings in South America's qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup. Presuming Argentina takes top spot in its Copa America quartet, it's left to Canada, Chile, or Peru to decide who advances to the knockout rounds with a second-placed finish.

Schedule 🗓

Date Match City Time (ET)
June 20 ARG vs. CAN Atlanta 8 p.m.
June 21 PER vs. CHI Arlington 8 p.m.
June 25 PER vs. CAN Kansas City 6 p.m.
June 25 CHI vs. ARG New Jersey 9 p.m.
June 29 ARG vs. PER Miami 8 p.m.
June 29 CAN vs. CHI Orlando 8 p.m.

Key question 🔑

Who will finish second? Jesse Marsch's arrival may be too late to inspire a run for Canada, but finding some defensive solidity in a goalless draw with France was an unexpected boost ahead of Copa America. Meanwhile, veteran coach Jorge Fossati is trying to prolong a strong Peruvian generation that seemed to run out of steam a couple of years ago, while Peru's former boss, the rake-thin rock star Ricardo Gareca, appears to be gradually entering a new and potentially exciting era with Chile.

Players to watch 🌟

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Lionel Messi: I mean, of course. Messi has registered 13 goals and 12 assists in 18 MLS appearances for Inter Miami. He also appears at ease playing in the United States after saying he expects Miami to be the final stop of his club career.

Alphonso Davies: Sadly, Davies has struggled to recapture the scarcely believable form of his early Bayern Munich days four-to-five years ago. He probably needs a transfer. Still, the 23-year-old is an explosive talent and clearly Canada's best player.

Alexis Sanchez: Sanchez's role with Chile has changed. No longer a tireless, scuttling attacker, the 35-year-old now sits between the lines, using his technical excellence to unleash others, like wingers Victor Davila and Dario Osorio.

Oliver Sonne: Last October, Sonne stepped off the plane in Lima, greeted fans and the press, and then left the airport to pick up his first Peruvian passport. He trained with the national team the following day, conversing in broken English because he couldn't speak Spanish. The versatile Danish-born defender, 23, qualifies for Peru through his maternal grandmother and plays for Silkeborg.

Predictions 🔮

Rank Team Points
1 Argentina 9
2 Chile 4
3 Canada 2
4 Peru 1

Group B 🇪🇨🇯🇲🇲🇽🇻🇪

Group B might be the toughest to predict. There's no obvious heavyweight and no clear weakling - any combination of results is possible. Ecuador may sit 17 places below Mexico in the FIFA rankings, but Felix Sanchez Bas' team will be a popular pick to progress after just one competitive defeat - to Argentina, no less - since its 2022 World Cup exit. Don't rule out Jamaica or Venezuela securing a passage into the quarterfinals.

Schedule 🗓

Date Match City Time (ET)
June 22 ECU vs. VEN Santa Clara 6 p.m.
June 22 MEX vs. JAM Houston 8 p.m.
June 26 ECU vs. JAM Las Vegas 6 p.m.
June 26 VEN vs. MEX Inglewood 9 p.m.
June 30 MEX vs. ECU Glendale 8 p.m.
June 30 JAM vs. VEN Austin 8 p.m.

Key question 🔑

Can Mexico give fans hope? Expectations have shifted in recent years. Mexico reached the knockout rounds in each of its previous eight World Cup appearances before its miserable group-stage elimination in 2022. The 2023 Gold Cup triumph wasn't nearly enough to tend to wounds habitually inflicted by the United States in CONCACAF competitions. So, with silverware seemingly out of reach, Mexico must try to trigger a period of renewal after coach Jaime Lozano phased out some of the old guard. Perhaps someone like Club America's Julian Quinones, a Colombian who completed his naturalization process to become a Mexican international last year, can be a surprise hit. There are a lot of ifs during an uncertain period for El Tri.

Players to watch 🌟

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Kendry Paez: The supremely confident Paez will join Ecuador teammate Moises Caicedo at Chelsea next summer. The 17-year-old attacker boasts bewildering technical ability and incredible vision, but his attitude is a concern after he enjoyed a night out on the eve of his sixth cap in March.

Bobby De Cordova-Reid: Part of Jamaica's growing stable of Premier League players, Fulham's De Cordova-Reid is a hardworking, versatile attacker who likes to win possession high up the park. He's more of an agitator than a goalscorer.

Santiago Gimenez: The Mexican forward tallied 23 goals and nine assists for Feyenoord during the 2023-24 Eredivisie campaign. He also scored twice and assisted once in the Champions League group stage. The 23-year-old is linked with a move to the Premier League.

Yangel Herrera: Herrera was instrumental for Girona as the Catalan club surprisingly finished third in La Liga. The Venezuelan midfielder can protect the defense with his brawn and fine anticipation while pushing incisive passes upfield.

Predictions 🔮

Rank Team Points
1 Ecuador 7
2 Mexico 5
3 Jamaica 3
4 Venezuela 1

Group C 🇧🇴🇺🇸🇵🇦🇺🇾

Uruguay is peppered with players plying their trade at some of Europe's biggest clubs, and its performance in World Cup qualifying - it's second with six more points than sixth-placed Brazil - should make it a legitimate Copa America contender. La Celeste are thriving under Marcelo Bielsa. United States finishes its group campaign against Uruguay, but there could be little on the line in that fixture if Panama and Bolivia fail to produce anything noteworthy during the first two rounds of games.

Schedule 🗓

Date Match City Time (ET)
June 23 USA vs. BOL Arlington 6 p.m.
June 23 URU vs. PAN Miami 9 p.m.
June 27 PAN vs. USA Atlanta 6 p.m.
June 27 URU vs. BOL New Jersey 9 p.m.
July 1 BOL vs. PAN Orlando 9 p.m.
July 1 USA vs. URU Kansas City 9 p.m.

Key question 🔑

Is the U.S. good enough? Sorry, Mexico and Canada fans: The Yanks are the current CONCACAF kings. But the climb to CONMEBOL is steep, as demonstrated by USMNT's recent 5-1 thumping from Colombia. There were issues from the first whistle, such as the lack of imagination and tempo, but Gregg Berhalter's bench perhaps best exposed the obvious dearth between the confederations. A pool of talent that appears so deep when compared to CONCACAF rivals seems much shallower alongside the top South American sides. Wednesday's 1-1 draw with Brazil helped ease some concerns, but the question is far from answered.

Players to watch 🌟

Stephen Nadler/ISI Photos / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Ramiro Vaca: Vaca is starting to establish himself in his country's midfield and struck a fine finish from outside the box against Peru last November - a match that happens to be Bolivia's only competitive win in over two-and-a-half years.

Antonee Robinson: This may seem like a left-field pick considering the forwards at Berhalter's disposal, including Christian Pulisic after his excellent season with AC Milan, but full-back Robinson has been impressively consistent for the United States.

Michael Amir Murillo: The former New York Red Bulls right-back is among the most enterprising players in Panama's lineup. He joins the tournament after battling with French international Jonathan Clauss for minutes at Marseille.

Darwin Nunez: The Liverpool forward is pure entertainment, skying the easiest opportunities before meeting much tougher chances with deafening thuds past the goalkeeper. His energy perfectly suits Uruguay's approach under Bielsa.

Predictions 🔮

Rank Team Points
1 Uruguay 9
2 United States 6
3 Panama 3
4 Bolivia 0

Group D 🇧🇷🇨🇴🇨🇷🇵🇾

Brazil has the usual stardust in its squad with Raphinha, 27, the oldest member of an attacking contingent that also features Vinicius Junior, Rodrygo, Endrick, Gabriel Martinelli, and Savio - all of whom are aged 23 or under. The rest of the lineup in front of goalkeeper Alisson is also awash with talent. But all is not well with Brazil, which sits sixth in World Cup qualification following a run of one draw and three defeats across the international windows in October and November. Canarinha boss Dorival Junior tried to shake things up before meeting Colombia, Costa Rica, and Paraguay in Group D, omitting Casemiro, Richarlison, and Gabriel Jesus from his final roster.

Schedule 🗓

Date Match City Time (ET)
June 24 COL vs. PAR Houston 6 p.m.
June 24 BRA vs. CRC Inglewood 9 p.m.
June 28 COL vs. CRC Glendale 6 p.m.
June 28 PAR vs. BRA Las Vegas 9 p.m.
July 2 BRA vs. COL Santa Clara 9 p.m.
July 2 CRC vs. PAR Austin 9 p.m.

Key question 🔑

Can Colombia upset the apple cart? Los Cafeteros might be one of football's biggest underachievers. One Copa America triumph in 2001 and four World Cup knockout matches through the men's team's history simply isn't enough. But right now, Colombia is a formidable opponent. Head coach Nestor Lorenzo has lifted the nation's mood after the team's failure to qualify for the 2022 World Cup, extending an unbeaten streak that dates back to February 2022 and logging victories over Germany, Brazil, Spain, and the United States in the past 12 months.

Players to watch 🌟

Rich Storry / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Vinicius Junior: Vinicius is the current favorite to win the next Ballon d'Or after he helped Real Madrid clinch a Champions League and La Liga double. "Today, he already deserves the award," Brazilian icon Rivaldo said recently, "but if he wins the Copa America, even better."

Luis Diaz: Liverpool's Diaz stands out in a Colombia side that benefits from a strong team dynamic rather than a few standout individuals. He scored two goals in four minutes to down Brazil in a World Cup qualifier last November, just days after his father was freed by kidnappers.

Manfred Ugalde: The Copa America might be a timely escape for 22-year-old Ugalde. The Costa Rican striker was steadily improving as he passed through Saprissa, Lommel, and FC Twente, but his latest stop at Spartak Moscow hasn't worked out so far. He's scored once in 16 appearances.

Julio Enciso: At just 20, Enciso has already developed a reputation for scoring stunning goals and eviscerating Premier League opponents with his pace and dribbling. Sadly, injuries restricted the Paraguayan to just 12 top-flight starts for Brighton & Hove Albion in the 2023-24 season.

Predictions 🔮

Rank Team Points
1 Brazil 7
2 Colombia 7
3 Paraguay 3
4 Costa Rica 0

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