Ministry of Sport

Socceroo’s To Reap Commercial Benefits From Copa America Debut

South American Football Confederation, Conmebol, has invited Australia and Qatar to join the ten South American nations in the 2020 Copa America soccer tournament.

One of the two teams from the Asian confederation will be drawn in the Colombia-based northern section along with Colombia, Brazil, Venezuela, Ecuador and Peru.

The other will be drawn in the Argentina-based southern section along with Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, Bolivia and Chile.

Four will qualify from each six-team section for the quarter-finals.

The move means Qatar, who won this year’s AFC Asian Cup, will play in two consecutive editions of the South American soccer’s flagship international tournament ahead of staging the 2022 Fifa World Cup.

Meanwhile, Australia, who has since accepted the invitation, will be competing in the competition for the first time.

“The benefits of participating in the tournament are wide-ranging,” CEO of Football Federation Australia (FFA), David Gallop said.

“Our team will benefit from the experience of testing themselves out against some of the best players in the world.

“On the commercial side, exposing our national team on a global stage has significant upside as well.

“I’d also like to extend our gratitude to those at Conmebol for their cooperation during this process.”

Conmebol first invited countries from other continents to compete in the Copa America in 1993.

Along with Qatar, the ongoing edition of the tournament also features Japan, who kick off their campaign against Chile on Monday.

Shaun Carney

Shaun Carney