Colombia now knows its group for the 2024 Copa América soccer tournament, which will take place in the United States between June 20 and July 14 of next year. After postponing the South American qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup until next September, Colombians will play a series of friendly matches to prepare for the most important American national team tournament: the Copa América.
The championship, which celebrated its centenary in 2016, is the oldest national teams’ tournament in the world. In 2024, it will hold its 48th edition, initially supposed to be played this year in Ecuador. However, a FIFA calendar restructuring forced the American federations, Concacaf (North America and the Caribbean) and Conmebol (South America), to change the date and location of the tournament.
A total of 16 national teams, 10 from Conmebol and 6 from Concacaf, will compete for the trophy in a total of 32 matches. The 2024 edition will be the second time the United States hosts the tournament after hosting the centenary edition seven years ago.
Colombia in Group D of 2024 Copa America
In the presence of officials from the 16 participating national teams, the draw for the 2024 Copa America took place at the James L. Knight Center in Miami. Among the special guests was El Pibe Valderrama, a figure in the 1987 Copa América and the only Colombian in the all-time ideal eleven of the competition.
The Colombian team, which finished in third place in the 2021 edition held in Brazil, learned their group this week. Colombia was placed in Group D alongside Paraguay, Brazil, and the winner of the Honduras-Costa Rica match.
“There is a lot of expectation for this tournament, and that is very positive, a tournament that brings together the teams of the continent, and we hope it will be a great spectacle for everyone,” said Alejandro Domínguez, president of Conmebol.
The revamped Copa América trophy was presented on stage by Lionel Scaloni, the coach who led Argentina to victory in the previous 2021 edition.
Confusion at the end of the draw affecting Colombia
The draw also had a moment of controversy. Almost at the end, there was a forced change in one of Colombia’s group opponents, Group D. The rules stated that there could not be more than 3 Conmebol teams or 2 Concacaf teams in the same group, a condition met when the first 3 teams of each group were drawn.
However, once the groups were finished, it became clear that the last teams in each series had to be reassigned to comply with the regulations. Initially, Colombia was supposed to face Brazil, Paraguay, and Jamaica, but after the modifications, Jamaica exited the group, making way for the winner of the playoff between Costa Rica and Honduras.
Colombia’s match schedule in the 2024 Copa América
The Colombian national team will start its Copa América campaign facing Paraguay on June 24 in Houston. It is worth noting that Néstor Lorenzo’s team already defeated Paraguay in the sixth round of the South American Qualifiers, in a match played last November.
In the second round on June 28, Colombia will face the winner of Honduras-Costa Rica, and for the third match on July 2, they will play against the formidable Brazil, a team that the Colombian squad also managed to defeat in the memorable encounter on November 16 during the same South American Qualifiers.