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Where to watch the CONMEBOL Qualifiers?

Argentina, Chile, Ecuador's fight for survival -- CONMEBOL Week 17 WCQs

October 5, 2017 By Oscar Rojas
La Albiceleste, La Roja, Perú and even Paraguay are still in contention for a spot to play in Russia. Don't miss their evening games today.

Earning a spot in the World Cup after enduring such a tough Qualifying round should give all the teams an added bonus, as CONMEBOL's WCQ last longer than any other in the world (almost two years) and have some of the finest footballers these days.

Today's clashes have quite a few angles to look at, but the main topic has to be Argentina's situation. Having Lionel Messi around hasn't been a guarantee for La Albiceleste, and things could turn really ugly if they fail to reach the global tournament. With that in mind, let's have a look at some scenarios before and after tonight's games are played.

1. Peru 2-2 Argentina in the first leg. Second leg predictions?

Tonight's big game is set to take place at La Bombonera, the home of legendary club Boca Juniors. The last time Peru managed to beat Argentina in a WCQ match goes back to 1986, and out of their 17 qualifier games between them, Argentina has won more than half.

Peru's coach Ricardo Gareca has never been able to win as a manager in La Bombonera, drawing six and losing five games with different Argentine clubs. Nonetheless, Perú has managed to walk away from this stadium with a draw in the 1969 World Cup Qualifiers, which ended with Argentina watching the 1970 World Cup on TV. Will history repeat itself?

2. Chile, the second Copa América champion left OUT of the World Cup?

The Golden Generation of Chilean football has delivered glory for La Roja, but their recent success could be tarnished if they fail to qualify for the global tournament. As of now, Chile are sixth, and dropping points against Ecuador could see them miss out on the chance of a direct ticket to Russia. With the play-off spot still accessible, it would be a major upset to have a World Cup without La Roja, but they wouldn't be the first Copa América winners to be left out of FIFA's most relevant competition.

The 2001 Copa América winners, Colombia, failed to make it to the 2002 WC in Korea and Japan, being the only Copa América holder to miss the World Cup to this date. All other champions have made it to the global tournament, including Argentina and Uruguay, who needed to fight for their spot via a playoff after winning the 1993 and 2011 Copa América editions, respectively.

3. Uruguay and Colombia are NOT YET in the clear

With two games left, and considering how consistent these sides have been, Uruguay and Colombia could join Brazil as CONMEBOL's representatives in the 2018 World Cup. But in order to do that, they need to win their respective games tonight. If they can't do so, Uruguay needs one point out of the six left to play for to seal their spot in Russia, while Colombia needs two to start making ticket reservations.

4. Paraguay and Ecuador, trying to make miracles happen

La Albirroja and La Tricolor may very well start praying, because both of them don't depend on themselves to book their spot in Russia or in the playoff stage.

Paraguay needs to beat Colombia and Venezuela, and hope for Chile, Argentina or Perú to drop points. Added to that, their -6 goal differential has left "Chiqui" Arce's men in a complicated position.

The massive drop in form experienced by Ecuador has seen them fall from the top of the table after 3 rounds to the eighth spot. Playing against Chile and Argentina will be tough, and winning both games might not be enough for the yellow-and-blue.

5. Cavani's top scorer spot in jeopardy...because of Neymar!

Edinson Cavani's goals proved to be useful for Uruguay in the earlier stages of the Qualifiers, but now, PSG's striker may have that honor taken from his hands by none other than Neymar.

With nine goals, Cavani is still the top scorer in the CONMEBOL Qualifiers. Neymar, Alexis Sánchez and Arturo Vidal are ranked third with six goals each, but Brazil's meeting against Bolivia seems like a prime chance for "Ney" to take the top of the goal scoring charts.

Oh, just in case you were wondering, Lionel Messi is five goals away from Cavani.

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