Scaloni: European teams should play in Copa America

Scaloni: European teams should play in Copa America

Argentina manager Lionel Scaloni bizarrely claimed that European nations should be invited to the Copa America and vice versa to prove ‘the level is very even’ during a press conference on Tuesday.

The 46-year-old head coach, who led Lionel Messi and Co to World Cup glory in 2022, is gearing up to face Canada in the Copa America semi-final on Wednesday.

Scaloni, who will face either Uruguay or Colombia in Monday’s final if the tournament favourites triumph over Canada, was asked by reporters on Tuesday whether the European Championship was a trickier competition to win than the Copa America.

By comparison, England, the Netherlands, Spain and France are the four teams battling it out for Euro 2024 glory this summer.

Engaging with the question, Scaloni said: ‘I don’t think it’s more difficult from one competition to another.

Argentina manager Lionel Scaloni bizarrely claimed that nations competing in the European Championships should be invited to the Copa America to prove ‘the level is very even’

Lionel Messi (right) and Co are gearing up to face Canada in the Copa America semi-finals

Lionel Messi (right) and Co are gearing up to face Canada in the Copa America semi-finals

‘There are some important teams that have advanced to the semifinals of the Euros, teams that we faced in the World Cup and it went well for us. But that doesn’t mean that we could go to the European Championship and win it.’ 

Backtracking, the manager said swiftly: ‘Or maybe yes (we could win it). I think the level is very even. 

‘I would like a European team to one day be invited to a Copa America to see what it is like to play in a Copa America and the opposite, as well.

‘But that would be a World Cup, right? So, in the end the difficulty is the same. I don’t think there’s much difference, really. But these are just opinions.’ 

Scaloni led Argentina to World Cup glory in 2022 after beating France on penalties in the final

Scaloni led Argentina to World Cup glory in 2022 after beating France on penalties in the final

After putting forward his idea, Scaloni quickly said: 'But that would be a World Cup, right?'

After putting forward his idea, Scaloni quickly said: ‘But that would be a World Cup, right?’

Argentina beat France on penalties after an enthralling 3-3 draw in the 2022 World Cup final, triumphing over Australia, the Netherlands and Croatia in the knockout stages en route to lifting the trophy.

As for this summer’s Copa America, Scaloni’s side won all three group stage games before narrowly edging past Ecuador 4-2 on penalties in the quarter-finals, with the tournament having no last-16 stage unlike the European Championships. 

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