The Libertadores is back: everything you need to know

Six months later stop forced by the coronavirus pandemic, The Copa Libertadores returns. He does it with unprecedented circumstances compared to previous editions, with matches behind closed doors that they will not have that characteristic fervor of the fans, who will not be able to give encouragement to their teams in the stadiums, but with the same magic and essence as always.

The return of the European continental competitions – how the Champions League – they mark the way forward for CONMEBOL, in order to guarantee compliance with all safety and health protocols. Unlike what has happened in Europe, the rhythm of the competition will also be a differential element for the teams, since there are league championships – like the Argentine one – that have not yet returned, while other teams have already restarted their national competitions with several days played.

The tournament will resume with just two days of the group stage played in the first week of March and with the rest of the competition yet to be played. There will also be many new faces in many of the big clubs, both on the benches and in the squads.

Maracana, venue of the final

He Maracana stadium It will host the final of this edition of the tournament. Todo a 'reference' stadium in the world of football and that has already hosted major tournaments finals in the world of football, while the final of the South American will be played at the Mario Kempes stadium in Córdoba (Argentina).

In this way, both enclosures will respectively replace Santiago de Chile (Libertadores) and Asunción (South American), cities where the first single-match qualifiers in history will be played of the two tournaments CONMEBOL. The final, which was scheduled for November 20, has had to be delayed to January 2021, between the week of 20 and 30 of that month.

Same format and classification criteria

The same format and same classification criteria for this atypical Liberators. The first two classified from each group they will play the round of 16, Meanwhile he third will play the final phase of the Cup South American.

The classification criteria, in case of a tie on points, it will be the next in order of greater importance.

  1. Number of points
  2. Goal difference
  3. Most goals in favor
  4. Most goals in favor as a visitor
  5. Position in the CONMEBOL ranking

Flamengo, the difficult mission to defend title

Current champion, he will have one of the most complicated missions in this return. Defend the Libertadores champion crown. Jorge Jesús left, returning to his Portuguese Benfica, and arrives to try to revalidate champion status Doménec Torrent.

Flamengo Shield / Flag

Former assistant to Pep Guardiola in his stages as coach at Barcelona, ​​Bayern Munich and Manchester City, The Spanish coach has a major challenge in front of 'Mengao', which is none other than imposing his style to win the Brasileirao again and reign again in America. Entrusting yourself to Gabigol's scoring nose, the experience of footballers such as Isla or Filipe Luis or the talent of Everton will be key in the future of the team.

River, blind trust in Marcelo Gallardo

The 'Doll' will command a new attempt by River to win the Cup without rhythm of its competition – the Argentine league has not been resumed in the absence of an agreement between AFA and the Government to specify date – and without important footballers.

The departure of Juanfer Quintero to Chinese football, the return 'blind' and the losses due to positive of some players the return of the 'Millionaire' will diminish, that he has not raised the title since he beat his eternal rival at the Santiago Bernabéu a couple of years ago. Nicolás de la Cruz, Santos Borré, Enzo Pérez and Matías Suárez will be the most prominent names of the 'Millionaire'.

He currently leads the group D, in which it is paired with Sao Paulo, Liga de Quito and Binacional.

Boca, more than a decade in drought

June 20, 2007. The last day that the 'Xeneize' managed to win the Libertadores. Since then, the Cup has not returned to the showcases of 'La Bombonera', despite playing the final in Spain that took his eternal rival in extra time.

Boca Juniors Shield / Flag

Miguel Ángel Russo will be in charge of directing the bostero team to launch for the title. Footballers like Tévez, Mauro Zárate and Salvio will be fundamental to lead the offensive towards the championship. He is currently second in group H, in which he competes to qualify for the next round with Libertad, Caracas and Independiente de Medellín.

Get good results and improve according to the progression with greater number of minutes They will be key to face the decisive stretch of the competition in case of qualifying.

Palmeiras, Gremio or Racing, in the second tier of favorites

After the current champion and the two Argentine giants, among the bets – at least in the month of March – they placed between el second tier of favorites to clubs like Palmeiras or Gremio, besides others like Racing, Athletico Paranaense, or International.

About these clubs, el 'Verdao', who lifted his only title in 1999, will seek with Vanderlei Luxemburg on the bench the championship with footballers of the stature of Felipe Melo, Luiz Adriano or Ramires, well known for their time in European football. International will have the sensitive loss of Paolo Warrior, seriously injured and will miss the rest of the year.

Peñarol starts the Libertadores without Forlan

Peñarol, with five Liberators in his record, He also returns with a new technician at the controls (Mario Saralegui) after the dismissal of Diego Forlán as coach at the nine championship rounds. All this and much more are the main incentives of a different Libertadores, unusual but not lacking in good football.