One of the favorites to win the 2019 Copa América (CA), Uruguay begin their campaign against Ecuador, a team they have lost to in only three of 17 H2Hs in the CA (W13, D1). Yet it has been closed this decade, with both teams sharing two victories over the last five meetings (D1).
Uruguay ended last year with four straight defeats (friendlies), but in 2019 they have won all three matches with a combined score of 10-0, winning the first half on each occasion. Eight of their last 11 matches produced over 2.5 goals (W6, L5), but the last five have seen just one score.
Ecuador, officially CONMEBOL’s worst-ever team at the CA (W16, D22, L80), haven’t won a single game this calendar year (D2, L2), but at least scored three goals in their last two friendlies after firing a bank in the first two. Perhaps unsurprisingly, those three goals all came after half-time with ‘La Tri’ scoring 13 of their 14 goals since the start of 2018 after the break.
The last time Ecuador won their opening game was in 1993 (6-1) against Venezuela (D3, L6 since). In fact, over the last six CA tournaments, Ecuador has only won three matches in total (W3, D3, L13).
Players to watch: Uruguayan all-time top scorer Luis Suárez (55 goals) has scored in three of his last five appearances (club & country), twice after the 60th minute.
Enner Valencia has scored six of his last seven goals for Ecuador in the second half. He needs only one more to equalize his country’s all-time record (29 goals).
Stat attack: There hasn’t been a draw in Uruguay’s last 17 (W11, L6).
Uruguay has won just two CA games since winning the tournament back in 2011 (D1, L4).
There have been over 2.5 goals scored in only three of Ecuador’s last ten games.
Will not play
Referee: Daronco A. (Bra),
Venue: Mineirão (Belo Horizonte)