The 44th edition of the Copa America begins in Chile on 11June. Host Chile will be playing the first game of the cup against Equador at the Estadio Nacional Julio Martínez Pradanos.
It is pertinent here that neither Chile nor Equador have previously won the tournament. Chile are one of the favorites after the Latin American footballing giants - Brazil and Argentina.
The Chile team will be at an advantage, given that spectators tend to support the home team.
Chile have hosted the championship six times earlier, but never managed to lift the trophy. They finished at third position four times, runners up once and landed in the fourth place once.
Alexis Sanchez, who has had a wonderful season with Arsenal, will lead the Chilean brigade. Chile also has one of the best goalkeepers in the competition in the form of Claudio Bravo, who led the Catalans to win the La Liga and Copa Del Rey.
"We come to the team with pride to wear this shirt. It's much better for the team when the players are at a good level and eager. With Arturo, we were the last to arrive, we saw the group working very well," Bravo told reporters ahead of their first match of the Copa America 2015 against Equador.
Chile head coach Jorge Sampaoli had taken over the responsibility of guiding the Chilean players back in 2012. And ever since he joined, the Chile team has changed its outlook as they have implemented a new playing style under his influence. They played some brilliant football during the FIFA World Cup 2014 until they were knocked out in the last 16 stage by Brazil.
Sampaoli is not taking Equador lightly as he feels the latter will give a tough competition to Chile in the first game of the Copa America 2015 at Estadio Nacional. In 2011, Chile had reached the quarter final stages of the Copa America but lost to Venezuela.
"The match against Ecuador will be a tough and difficult game. They are a team with some very fast players who can exploit big spaces," Sampaoli said during a press conference ahead of the first match.
On the other hand, Equador holds a poor record in this competition. They have lost nine games in a row since 2001. The last time they had won a game in this championship was against Venezuela.
The team has also been hit by injuries, as Antonio Valencia, Felipe Caicedo, Ángel Mena, Michael Arroyo and Jaime Ayoví have pulled out of the tournament.
Equador faces tough competition in the Copa America 2015 as they are in Group A along with Mexico, Bolivia and host Chile. If they want to prove a point in the tournament, they will have to go past these teams, an uphill task for the men in yellow. They have never made it to the knockout stages since 1997.
Enner Valencia will be the star player for Equador in the tournament just as he was during the FIFA World Cup 2014 in Brazil. The West Ham United striker struggled for form in the English Premier League but has scored 11 goals in 19 matches for his country. Coach Gustavo Quinteros will be expecting a lot from this Equadorian striker.
Chile: Bravo; Silva, Medel, Jara; Isla, Beausejour, Aranguiz, Mena, Vidal; Vargas, Sanchez.
Equador: Dominguez; Paredes, Ayovi, Mina, Achilier; Martinez, Noboa, Lastra, Bolanos, Montero; Valencia.
Where to watch live:
The first match of the Copa America 2015 between host nation Chile and Equador is scheduled for a 8:30 pm local time (5:00 am IST, 12:30 am BST and 7:30 ET) start with live coverage in India on Sony Six, Sony Kix and Sony Six HD. Live streaming option is on Livsports.
Viewers in UK can switch to Premier Sports. The opening Copa America match can be live streamed on Premier Player.
Viewers in Australia can live stream the match on beIn Sports Connect Australia.
Middle East viewers can watch the match live beIn Sports Arabia 1 HD and beIn Sports Arabia 2 HD.