The Copa America final takes place at the Estadio do Maracana in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday evening with the match set for a 9.00pm GMT start. Followers have enjoyed a thrilling tournament so far with more than a fair share of drama along the way but we still have one match to go and it promises to be the pick of the bunch.
Host nation Brazil have blazed a trail of glory all the way to the final and will be cheered on by the majority of spectators crammed into the impressive near 80,000 capacity stadium. Will it make a difference to their chances when hosting Peru in the deciding match?
Bookmakers Lay on a Feast of Betting Markets
Bookmakers certainly believe so and have priced the home win as hot favourite, betting giants Ladbrokes offering no more than 1/3. That looks a little tight in what should be a competitive contest, but it’s the general feeling amongst traders. Peru are underdogs and backers will find Betfair have attached a whopping 11/1 price tag to their chances. Can’t split them? The draw will catch your eye at William Hill’s 4/1.
Bookmakers expect a thrilling match and have laid on a feast of exciting betting markets to help followers enjoy the match. Have your say on the winner in 90 minutes or take a chance on one of the many specials markets. There’s both teams to score, first goal scorer, correct score, total goals, half-time/full-time, score and win, Asian handicap, and much more besides. Same game multis are a new way to bet on football, allowing players to combine up to six different markets, giving value for money.
When the first whistle sounds, you’ll be delighted to learn many of the most popular pre-match markets remain live throughout the course of the game thanks to in-play betting. A punt is now as exciting in the final few minutes as it was before the start. You can get in early to secure a better price on your predictions or keep your powder dry until you see how both teams line-up and their tactics, giving yourself a better chance to beat the bookies.
Brazil Beat Argentina in Incident-Packed Match
Brazil beat Argentina in a glamourous semi-final that was tainted with controversy. The match was billed as a real 50/50 before kick-off, with many expecting Lionel Messi and co to upset home fans but it was the locals who came out on top at the end of 90 minutes, and quite comfortably too. Gabriel Jesus has been impressive for both club and country this season and put in another sound performance. The striker scored the first goal of the game when netting on 19 minutes to give the Samba Boys an advantage.
The game remained poised at 1-0 Brazil for much of the evening, until Firmino struck a second with 71 minutes on the clock to settle things. That put an end to any hopes of an Argentina fight back but the beaten side were competitive until the full-time whistle. The match was won by the better team but there were a few talking points that Argentina refused to let lie, particularly Barcelona star Messi. The attacker made his feelings clear when speaking to the press post-match.
Lionel labelled some of the decisions crazy and didn’t believe Brazil were the better team. He raged that the referee missed a couple of blatant penalties for his side and, to be fair, it looked like more than sour grapes. Is there a biased towards the home nation? If so, that’s something worth keeping in mind when placing your Copa America final bets.
Peru See off Chile
Peru may find themselves as betting underdogs for Sunday’s final, but they have already made a habit of upsetting the market at this competition and will believe they are good enough to go and do the same again when it matters. They were supposed no hopers when matched with the might of Chile in the semi finals but came through that contest unscathed, playing some impressive football along the way.
A 3-0 win for Peru was the final score on Thursday and the underdogs never looked like losing the match. They got off the mark thanks to an opening goal from Flores on 21 minutes to stun their opponents and were two ahead before the break following a second from Yotun. The game was over as a contest before the half-time team talk and Peru were only too happy to add a bit of sparkle to the occasion with a third goal in stoppage-time, just to make sure. Guerrero rounded things off on 91 minutes to delight supporters and send his team to the final. That result ended Chile’s hopes of winning three Copa Americas on the spin.
To make the win even more impressive, Peru ended with just 35% of the match possession and only three shots at goal. Their defence stood firm under heavy pressure and at the other end of the pitch they scored with each of their three attempts. Strong at the back and deadly up front, they will take all the beating on Sunday, that’s for sure.