In their first game since contesting the Copa America third-place play-off against each other, Chile and Argentina meet again in a friendly in Los Angeles.
L. A. Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, United States
Key Stat: Argentina's Copa America third-place play-off win against Chile was their 61st in this fixture, whereas Chile have beaten Argentina just eight times.
Expert Verdict: Argentina got the better of Chile in the Copa America third-place play-off in a tournament in which each showed shoots of recovery after some poor form in the build-up to it. Both teams have turned to their less experienced players for this match, and Argentina may have the edge looking at their strength in depth.
Alexis Sanchez and Eduardo Vargas will lead the attack for Chile, but the majority of their most experienced team-mates will not be involved. Gary Medel, Gonzalo Jara, Mauricio Isla and Arturo Vidal are among the players absent. Fit-again Claudio Bravo does return, however.
Alexis Sanchez – His Manchester United nightmare looks to be over and the Inter loanee will be desperate to kick-start his career again for club and country after being added to the squad late.
Marco Reus – Scored in both games in June, including two against Estonia, to move to 13 goals in 41 Eduardo Vargas – The UANL striker has scored 38 goals in 89 games for Chile, including the two he netted at the Copa America.
Charles Aranguiz – With 76 caps, the Bayer Leverkusen man is one of the other most experienced players in this otherwise second-string squad.
Chile only scored one goal in their final four Copa America matches – Arturo Vidal’s penalty against Argentina last time out. They lost 3-0 in the semi-finals to Peru, having previously beaten Colombia on penalties after a goalless draw in the quarter-finals. Their most recent ‘normal time’ win was against Ecuador in the group stage – Jose Fuenzalida and Alexis Sanchez scoring in a 2-1 defeat of Ecuador.
Defenders:Felipe Campos, Paulo Diaz, Igor Lichnovsky
Defensive Midfielders:Tomas Alarcon
Attacking Midfielders:Charles Aranguiz, Felipe Gutierrez, Diego Valdes, Claudio Baeza
Forwards:Alexis Sanchez, Eduardo Vargas
Lionel Messi is serving a three-month ban from the national team after comments he made against the South American football federation during and after the Copa America. He is not the only star player absent, however, with Sergio Aguero and Angel di Maria also rested.
Lautaro Martinez – Forced his way into the starting XI at the Copa America and the Inter striker now has six goals in 11 international appearances.
Paulo Dybala – Yet to establish himself at international level despite his reputation, but in Messi and Aguero’s absence this is a big opportunity.
Nicolas Otamendi – One of the more experienced players still in the squad, the Manchester City centre-back will be up against the similarly experienced Chile front line.
Defeat to Brazil in the Copa America semi-final is Argentina’s only loss in their last five games. They beat Qatar and Venezuela 2-0 in each of the previous two games Lautaro Martinez scoring in both – and finished third at the Copa America after beating Chile 2-1 last time out – Sergio Aguero and Paulo Dybala scoring.
Defenders:Nicolas Figal, Nicolas Otamendi, Marcos Rojo, Nicolas Tagliafico
Midfielders:Roberto Pereyra, Giovani Lo Celso, Manuel Lanzini
Forwards:Paulo Dybala, Lautaro Martinez, Lucas Alario
Argentina beat Chile in the 2019 Copa America third-placed play-off, avenging their defeat on penalties in the final in the same competition three years earlier. They had only met once in between – Argentina winning 1-0 in a World Cup qualifier. Lionel Messi scored the only goal of that game, while Sergio Aguero and Paulo Dybala were on target in Sao Paulo in July – Arturo Vidal’s penalty reply not enough. Both teams had been reduced to ten men after Messi and Gary Medel saw red – a decision widely criticised as far too harsh following their off-the-ball altercation. The win was Argentina’s 61st in this fixture and they have also drawn 22. Chile have won just eight.
With Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero among the absentees for Argentina and the majority of Chile’s experienced back line, plus Arturo Vidal, also missing, this has a very different slant to it.
Both sides have players with points to prove, blended with the odd bit of experience such as Eduardo Vargas for Chile and Lautaro Martinez for Argenina.
The latter was one of their key men at the Copa America and will be keen to add to his goal tally with Messi and Aguero missing – as will Paulo Dybala alongside him.
At the back, meanwhile, Nicolas Otamendi – one of Manchester City’s treble-winning stars – will be tasked with keeping Vargas and Alexis Sanchez, who was added to the squad at his request, quiet.
Chile do still have some experience, in the form of those two and Charles Aranguiz, but the side that got back to better form at the Copa America has been broken up for the time being.
On paper then, Argentina do appear to have the better known players and the players more likely to make the difference in Los Angeles.
Argentina are favourites, but backing either of these teams over the past two years has been a risky business.
Argentina are favourites to beat Chile but you can still back them at evens with 10Bet to win this friendly in Los Angeles.
Both teams scored in the Copa America third-place play-off and BTTS has been set at 4/5 with 10Bet for this match.
Over 2.5 goals between these two team, with several players looking to prove their worth, is evens with 10Bet as well.
Neither side has anything like a full-strength squad but Argentina – contrary to their current form – do have a good strength in depth and this is a chance for them to prove that.