Copa America 2019: All you need to know

Alexis Sanchez, Luis Suarez set to feature at 46th Copa America in Brazil

Lionel Messi Argentina Venezuela
Image: Lionel Messi has yet to win a major trophy with Argentina

The Copa America returns this summer, but when and where is it, who could feature from the Premier League and how are the teams shaping up ahead of the tournament?

When and where is it?

The 46th Copa America will be held in Brazil and will run from June 14 to July 7.

There will be five host cities - Salvador, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Belo Horizonte and Porto Alegre.

What teams are involved?

All 10 CONMEBOL nations - Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela - will be in Brazil along with invited guests Japan and Qatar, who competed in the Asian Cup final earlier this year.

Qatar have never played in the Copa America before while Japan appeared in 1999 when they failed to get out of their group. This will be the first Copa America since 1993 not to feature CONCACAF team Mexico.

Asia Cup
Image: Could Qatar cause a shock after winning the Asian Cup earlier this year?

Chile have won the last two editions of the tournament in 2015 and 2016 (the centenary edition of the Copa America), winning both finals on penalties against Argentina.

Argentina have not won the tournament since 1993 but will be one of the favourites along with Brazil, Uruguay and Chile.

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What's the format?

There are three groups of four teams, with the top two from each group qualifying for the quarter-finals along with two best-performing third-placed teams.

Copa America 2019 groups

Group A Group B Group C
Brazil Argentina Uruguay
Bolivia Colombia Ecuador
Venezuela Paraguay Japan
Peru Qatar Chile

How are the leading contenders shaping up?

With the tournament on home turf, Brazil start as favourites.

They are hosting their first Copa America since 1989, which they won, and shouldn't have too much trouble getting out their group.

Head coach Tite has been keen to introduce new faces to a squad that lost at the quarter-final stage of last summer's World Cup.

Alexis Sanchez celebrates with the trophy after winning the Copa America with Chile
Image: Alexis Sanchez's Chile are the defending champions

Argentina, who are bidding to win their first major trophy since 1993, were one of the biggest disappointments of the World Cup after exiting in the group stages. They sacked head coach Jorge Sampaoli following the tournament and brought in former defender Lionel Scaloni as his replacement.

Scaloni was part of Sampaoli's backroom team and has experimented with his squad selections ahead of the Copa America.

Lionel Messi said he was retiring from international football after missing a penalty in Argentina's 2016 Copa America final defeat to Chile. However, he has returned and will be looking to win his first major trophy with his country.

Lionel Messi has not played for Argentina since their last-16 defeat to France
Image: Lionel Messi has not played for Argentina since their last-16 defeat to France

While Brazil and Argentina have tried to find success by adding some youth over the last few years, Uruguay's squad oozes with experience.

Diego Godin, Fernando Muslera, Luis Suarez, Edinson Cavani and Martin Caceres have all played at several tournaments and might feel that time is running out for them as a group to win silverware.

Chile still have quality in their squad, although their results over the last year have been very mixed and they will need Alexis Sanchez to rediscover some form if they are going to have a chance.

Japan and Qatar might provide exciting competition after their showings at the Asian Cup while Ecuador could lean on their youth set-up after winning the Under-20 South American Championship earlier this year

Who will be the players to watch?

There will be the big names, including Philippe Coutinho, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, as well as several players from the Premier League, including Alisson, Alexis Sanchez, Roberto Firmino, Salomon Rondon, Richarlison and Gabriel Jesus.

Manchester City forward Sergio Aguero might be there, although he has not been called up since the World Cup and there has been talk of friction with Scaloni, which the Argentina boss has denied.

"There's no problem with Sergio Aguero and he's in the race for the Copa America. I can guarantee that I have the best relationship with him and I've never had a problem."

Brazil get off to winning start

preview image 1:53
Philippe Coutinho helped Brazil overcome the absence of Neymar by scoring twice in Brazil's 3-0 win over Bolivia in the opening match of the Copa America.

How can I follow it?

You will be able to follow selected games with our live blogs at www.skysports.com or with the Sky Sports app, while we will also be bringing you full match highlights of all the matches every morning.

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