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Copa Libertadores odds

Copa Libertadores

Who wins the Copa Libertadores 2021?

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Copa Libertadores, South America’s most important tournament is coming back on July 13th.

The competition has been dominated by the two biggest countries of the continent, Brazil and Argentina.

Boca juniors and River Plate, Argentina’s most important clubs, will struggle against Brazilian defending champions Palmeiras, last finalist Santos or 2019 champions, Flamengo.

There are many players to keep an eye on, that we will for sure see them in Europe’s top leagues in the next few years.

Just to name some of them : Kayky a Brazilian winger who just turned 18 this June is one of Fluminense(Br) stars and has been bought by Manchester City for USD16M.

Thiago Almada from Velez Sarsfield(Ar) has been tempted in several opportunities by europe’s big teams and will be for sure a threaten to any defense in Libertadores knock out stages.

Gabriel Veron from Palmeiras (Br) is another youngster that has already given to talk. The 18 year old wonderkid has an estimated value of USD25M and was one of Palmeiras 2020 championship’s key players.

Cristian Pavon, a spicy wing from Boca Juniors has returned to the club after a loan at Los Angeles Galaxy where he played for 1 year. The Argentinian has already played for Argentina at 2018 Russia World Cup and his pace and bravery can be seen in every match he plays.

Nicolas de la Cruz is one of the most promising forwards in Uruguay. This youngster from River Plate is actually playing Copa America for his country and a key player for his team.       

Gabriel Barbosa, a.k.a “Gabigol” has been the MVP of Flamengo’s 2019 Libertadores conquer. The 24 years old striker has already been paying for Italy champions Inter and has been named by Brazilian’s coach Tite for this Copa America.

After many years of clear dominance for Argentinian and Brazilian teams there are nevertheless, some teams that have a tradition in the Libertadores and are still alive:

Olimpia is the biggest club in Paraguay, they have already won Copa Libertadores 3 times, but the last one was in 2002. It will be a big challenge for them if they want to compete with South American’s giants as they did a few years ago.

Universidad Catolica from Chile has qualified to knock out stages from a group that had 3 past champions of Copa Libertadores, being them the only team that didn’t win it before. The Chilean team has played 1993’s Libertadores final and that’s their best mark at the moment.

Barcelona from Ecuador qualified from one of the toughest groups and did it as the best team. The yellow shirt team beat Boca juniors and Santos, sending last Copa Libertadores finalists, Santos, home very early.

Cerro Porteño from Paraguay are Olimpia’s biggest rivals. This is not just a rivalry of football but also about culture, social classes, the rich vs the poor. Compared with their big rivals Olimpia, Cerro Porteño has only reached semifinals in this tournament and that is something that turns Copa Libertadores into an obsession.

The rest of the teams that remain in the Round of 16 are Brazilians and Argentinians. Some of them with a big history behind, such as Argentinos Juniors, the place where Diego Armando Maradona started his career and also a club that has won Copa Libertadores back in 1985.

Defensa y Justicia, another team from Buenos Aires, has very little history in South America’s competitions but a really recent one. They are the last champions of Copa Sudamericana (South America’s Europa League’s version) and also Recopa (Supercup) champions beating Libertadores last champions, Palmeiras.

Brazil’s Atletico Mineiro were the best team of group stage and has invested tons of money in South American stars such as Eduardo Vargas from Chile, Hulk from Brazil or Junior Alonso from Paraguay. They will face Boca Juniors in the round of 16 and that is always something risky for Brazilian teams.

This year’s final will be played in Montevideo, Uruguay. The small country has two monsters of the continent, Nacional and Peñarol, but incredibly they won’t be able to lift their trophy home because none of them were able to reach round of 16 this year. The stadium is a myth itself, “El Centenario” of Montevideo has hosted 1930’s World Cup, the first football world cup in history.

The 2021 Copa Libertadores is the 62nd edition of the tournament and the winners will qualify for 2021 Japan World Cup and 2021 South America’s Recopa (Against Copa Sudamericana champions).

Boca Juniors is the most successful team of the remaining ones having lifted Copa Libertadores 6 times, followed by archrivals River Plate who have conquered 4, And Sao Paulo, Olimpia with 3 each.

This year’s final will take place on November 20th and we pray for fans to cheer from the stands as South America’s population continues to struggle with Covid quarantines and issues.