The Copa América is the oldest soccer competition of national teams in the world. It was disputed for the first time in a trial edition in 1910, but it had its first official edition between July 2 and 17, 1916, as part of the commemorations of the centennial of Argentina’s independence. In addition to the host country, Chile, Uruguay and Brazil also participated. From its first edition until 1967 the tournament was called the Campeonato Sudamericano de Selecciones. In the first edition, Uruguay won the championship, after a 0-0 match against Argentina in the final played at the Racing Club of Avellaneda stadium.
Since 1975, in its 30th edition, the tournament was officially called Copa América. With the change of name there were also changes in the dispute system. The point-by-point system was replaced by a format similar to that of the FIFA World Cup: qualifying phase, with the selections distributed in groups, followed by qualifying rounds. Since 1993, national teams have been invited from outside South America to participate in the Copa América. The first were the United States and Mexico. In 2016, the Copa América Centenario had exceptionally six invited teams: Costa Rica, the United States (host), Haiti, Jamaica, Mexico and Panama. However, the invited teams have never won a tournament edition. Mexico was the team that obtained the best results: runner-up in 1993 and 2001, and third place in 1997, 1999 and 2007.
The 2019 edition is being held in Brazil and Chile are the two-time defending champions, having won the 2015 and 2016 editions of the tournament. Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Japan, Paraguay, Peru, Qatar, Uruguay and Venezuela make up the competing countries. The draw of the tournament took place on January 24, 2019 at the Cidade das Artes in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The 12 competing teams were drawn into three groups of four, by selecting one team from each of the 4 ranked pots. In addition to watching some amazing soccer, for VOS it’s also been a pleasure to have already spotted tournament attendees wearing our diffuser bracelets at various stadiums throughout Brazil!