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Copa America: The result counts

7 July 2007 18:39

It seems a global footballing crisis that everyone is talking about; the "ugly football" which current Copa America holders Brazil are so contently displaying on their nights of grace in Venezuela. What's worse is that the famed ambassadors of 'o jogo bonito' (the beautiful game) are openly more concerned with the result of winning, than the matter in which they do so.

Brazilian playmaker Diego was firm in his assessment of the teams' progress to the quarterfinals round. "We're not here to play pretty football, we are here to be champions." To further reinforce their desire, under-fire Brazilian coach Dunga added "Football is about getting the result and I prefer the result. Teams who play expansive football never beat efficient teams."

No doubt these are the words of a focused team and coach. But expect things to get uglier with both exciting and attacking first and second choice wing-backs Maicon and Daniel Alves out through injury and suspension, leaving Dunga with the option of center back Alex Silva to drop into the vacated spot.

Brazil's opponents for tonight's quarterfinals clash, Chile, would have hoped to be much better prepared for the clash after losing out to Brazil in the opening Group stage, having been plagued by accusations of indiscipline and rowdiness. It has been said that after their qualification against Mexico on Thursday night, the players were involved in drunken scenes in which they allegedly damaged hotel equipment. Coach Nelson Acosta informed the media as reported to him by hotel directors, that the players' behavior was not good. However Acosta then replied, "I spoke to the players and they have given me another version."

In the night's other quarter-final, hosts Venezuela take on Uruguay after the two played out arguably the worse match of the 2007 Copa America to both make it to the quarter-finals. Much is expected to change tonight however, with Venezuela seeking to add to a host of firsts for the tournament after hosting it for the first time, having their first win since 1967 and advancing to their first ever international quarter-final.

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