Qualifying Qatar 2022: how Ecuador and Bolivia arrive, the first rivals of the National Team

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Gustavo Alfaro is the third coach of the year in the Ecuadorian team, which is in a transition. Bolivians suffer from political conflicts.

Ecuador and Bolivia, the first two rivals of the National Team in the World Cup Qualifiers, do not arrive in the best form at the beginning of the competition.

While the team led by Gustavo Alfaro suffers from desertions and casualties due to logistical problems, the assembly of the Altiplano campus was built in the midst of an internal political conflict that exploded its potential to confront nothing less than Brazil and Argentina.

The team led by Lionel Scaloni receives the Ecuadorians this Thursday at the Boca Juniors stadiumwhile the next Tuesday 13th visit the Hernando Siles in La Paz, where the 3,600 meters above sea level are positioned as the main obstacle, given the sporting fragility that a priori presents the selection of Venezuelan César Farías.

Of both, Ecuadorians have a somewhat more relieved scenario, Despite the fact that Alfaro cannot make his debut at La Bombonera with whom he currently emerges as the main reference, midfielder Christian Noboa.

Complications in international air traffic in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic conspired against the Russian Sochi player being able to arrive in Buenos Aires on time, so he will be available only for the second date, when they host Uruguay next Tuesday. in Quito.

Gustavo Alfaro, on the other hand, you do have Enner Valencia, the 30-year-old striker who in the recent European summer was hired by Turkey’s Fenerbahce from Mexico’s Tigres: he did not score in his first four games in the Ottoman Super League.

At 30 years old, the attacker is Ecuador’s top historical shooter alongside Agustín Delgado, with 31 goals each.

Thus, Valencia is the main attacking reference also before Felipe Caicedo’s decision not to return to the selected team, which he had resigned in 2017 after the Ecuadorian Football Federation (FEF) fired Argentine coach Gustavo Quinteros.

As it transpired, Alfaro wants at least to try to persuade the 32-year-old Lazio striker from Italy to reconsider his position, something that does not seem to be easy due to what was expressed earlier this year by the footballer, who considered “finished ”His time in the national team.

Antonio Valencia finds himself in a complex situation, the former Manchester United player who is still active, at 35, although Now he has no club after Liga Deportiva Universitaria de Quito terminated his contract in July due to the economic crisis that unleashed the pandemic.

Further, on Valencia weighed, at least until last year, a leadership veto having been singled out in a group of players who were caught partying after the national team was eliminated from the last Copa América, in Brazil. In that way Toño was on the verge of reaching one hundred encounters with the Tricolor, which he represented 99 times.

Alfaro is going through a difficult transition period, after failing in his goal of qualifying for Russia 2018 and a disappointing performance in the 2019 Copa América, from which he left without even winning a match.

Although the Tricolor has the best litter of young footballers in its history, which has just been third in the 2019 U-20 World Cup, the last years of the senior national team were characterized by instability, to the point that in the last three years five different coaches spent by the bench.

Heading into the qualifying rounds to Qatar 2022, he will seek to reach the top event for the fourth time in his history, after qualifying for the 2002 Korea-Japan, Germany 2006 and Brazil 2014 World Cups.

It weighs a complicated close antecedent: finished eighth on the road to Russia, with 10 defeats out of 18 games played.

In 2020, Ecuador had three coaches. When the year began, the coach was Jorge Célico, who was in charge of the team since the departure of Hernán Darío Gómez in mid-2019 after being eliminated from the Copa América and returned to his position in the U-20 when the leadership surprised the announce Jordi Cruyff as the new coach.

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