Amidst uncertainty and confusion caused by the investigation into FIFA, US still finds room to celebrate and is preparing to host the Copa América Centenario.
Celebrating 100 years since Uruguay won the very first one in Argentina in 1916, the special edition of the Copa América will take place in the US in 2016, with teams from the Conmebol and Concacaf.
The tournament will include the 10 teams in the Conmebol, in addition to the US, Mexico, Costa Rica (classified for winning the Copa Centroamericana 2014) and Jamaica (winner of the Copa del Caribe 2014). The other two teams will be the two best in the Copa de Oro 2015.
As it gears up to cover the event, Univision launched its first promotional video, featuring leading soccer players like Lionel Messi (Argentina), Chicharito Hernández (Mexico), Luis Suárez (Uruguay), Neymar (Brazil), James Rodríguez (Colombia), Clint Dempsey (US) and Bryan Ruiz (Costa Rica).
"With virtually every team of interest to US Hispanics, the average Univision audience is projected to be higher than that of the 2014 World Cup," the company said.
The Copa América Centenario will have 32 matches played in 10 US cities.
THE IRONY. Without a doubt, this comes as an unusual tournament, organized in the US, where the investigation into FIFA led to many directors being detained, including key figures in the most recent history of the Conmebol and Concacaf.
The fact that these men -and several others from companies with whom they had business- are detained for accepting bribes in the sale of rights for the Copa América and Copa América Centenario makes this whole thing even more troubling.
This week, the current president of the Conmebol, Juan Ángel Napout, said the Conmebol has the funds to cover the rest of the 2015-16 season, something which was jeopardized when its partner, Datisa, had its accounts frozen by the US Justice Department.
When it came to the Copa América Centenario, he wasn't so assertive: "What we said is that Copa América Centenario depends on two Confederations," he said to the media. "If it were up to just Conmebol it would be done for sure. We are planning with our lawyers, we are contacting the Concacaf."