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Colombia is as beautiful as it was at the 2014 World Cup. Córdoba and veterans lead the team to victory

Date: July 15, 2024 Time: 05:15:04

You can’t take your eyes off the Colombian national team in this Cup. Colombians play freely and uninhibitedly, score more goals than others and demonstrate excellent physicality. At the same time, unlike Argentina and Brazil, they have very few star players. Many of them don’t even play in the top European leagues, but are system-building players in the national team. What exactly led Columbia to such success?

The Uruguay – Colombia match broadcast in the Russian Federation is available in the Okko online cinema.

Let’s note right away that Colombia’s progress in this tournament is not accidental. The Colombians have not lost for 27 matches in a row. The last defeat was in 2022 under the leadership of Reynaldo Rueda. Then the team failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup. Later, Néstor Lorenzo was appointed coach, whose name is associated with the unbeaten streak. On the one hand, Néstor has a very short career as a leader; before that he only managed the Peruvian Melgara. On the other hand, Lorenzo worked for many years as an assistant to José Pekerman in the national team, including at the successful 2014 World Cup for Colombia.

The coach thus did not have to re-unite with players such as Matheus Uribe, Yerry Mina or James Rodriguez. He was also able to breathe new life into these Colombian veterans who had long since lost their motivation at club level. Perhaps 38-year-old Radamel Falcao, who recently returned to the local championship, would fit into this list.

Nestor Lorenzo

Photo: Omar Vega/Getty Images

Most of the time, Lorenzo’s team chooses an offensive 4-2-3-1 formation, which can be transformed into a 4-3-3. In qualifying for the 2026 World Cup, the Colombians showed tactical flexibility and knew how to take possession of the ball and pass it to the opponent at the right moment. The problem arose only with the implementation: the team scored only six goals in six games. Fortunately, these goals were enough to achieve four victories and practically guarantee a ticket to the main tournament for national teams.

The problem of implementation was finally solved in this mine. Colombia leads the number of goals scored among all teams: 11. In a quarter-final against Panama, five were scored. Unlike in the qualifying matches, the Colombians began to control the ball noticeably more. In the matches against Costa Rica and Paraguay, the percentage of possession exceeded 60. The Colombians became more free in choosing their position: both James and Diaz can appear with the ball absolutely anywhere on the field. Palmeiras’ new star Richard Rios can do what he loves: shoot at goal from 30 meters. He does it very dangerously. In addition, under Lorenzo, the team has developed excellent set pieces. Almost a third of the team’s goals were scored by them.

It was Gámez who became the player who shaped the national team’s system. He is a sure leader in the number of assists throughout the tournament. Even if James’ pass is not an assist, it is still very precise and directed only forward, for the sake of the rapid development of the attack. James does not change passes for crosses and does not get carried away by dribbling either. Luis Díaz surpasses him in the number of successful feints in the national team.

How Hames returned to the top level:

James Rodriguez is the best player in the Copa America. Where did he go and how did he get back to the top level?

The Liverpool striker is the team’s main star and not only demonstrates impressive speed, but also constantly draws two or three opposing defenders, freeing up space for his teammates. The coach almost freed James and Diaz from their defensive duties. Even though both players face each other quite often in single combat, the heat map shows that they still find themselves as far away from their own penalty area as possible, even if the opponent’s pressure increases.

Another important Colombian star is Crystal Palace defender Daniel Muñoz. He not only managed to contain Vinicius, but also became the team’s real offensive powerhouse, scoring three points using the goal+pass system. Among the RPL players in the Colombian national team, as well as throughout the tournament, the best performer is John Córdoba, a resident of Krasnodar. He started the tournament on the bench, but showed great results against Brazil and Panama, so he is very likely to start against Uruguay. Córdoba is dangerous both in the penalty area and in creative play: he has one goal and one assist in the tournament. Another RPL representative, Dynamo midfielder Jorge Carrascal, receives playing time only at the end of matches, but he does not spoil the overall picture.

John Cordoba

Photo: Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Much will depend on the substitutions in the match against the Uruguayans. The Colombians play energy-consuming football and often give up in the second half of the game. This can be seen even in the Kop. The Colombians, who lost their concentration, could well have lost to Brazil, although they looked noticeably stronger throughout the match. It will be very important for Lorenzo to recognize which players are starting to decline. The outcome of the semi-final will largely depend on the patience and attentiveness of the Colombians and whether they can remember how to play without the ball again. Uruguay will be sharper and tougher than Brazil in the group and will try to completely leave the Colombians with no space.

Néstor Lorenzo has ignited a spark in the footballers and in every interview he talks about how they support each other and fight for the honour of their country. With such bright eyes and love for beautiful football, the Colombians can count on the title. There are literally two steps left. Difficult, but only two.

It was a shame to watch Brazil in this Kop:

Brazil was eliminated from the Cup with a shameful performance! And receiving a penalty like that is a crime. Video

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Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.
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