CONMEBOL confirms World Cup qualifiers in March

Source: Xinhua| 2021-02-20 11:37:36|Editor: huaxia

ASUNCION, Feb. 19 (Xinhua) -- The South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) confirmed Friday that the region's next double-header of 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers will take place in late March.

The governing body said matchday 5 will take place on March 25 and 26, while all fixtures for matchday 6 have been scheduled for March 30.

Peru head coach Ricardo Gareca and his Colombian counterpart Reinaldo Rueda had called for the matches to be postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Both managers said their squads had been unable to prepare properly due to measures imposed by local authorities to stop the spread of the virus.

Gareca affirmed that different levels of restrictions in each country meant the qualifiers would be played on an uneven playing field.

CONMEBOL has said the matches must go ahead as scheduled to allow the qualifiers to be completed in time for the World Cup, which will be played in Qatar from November 21 to December 18, 2022.

The South American zone qualifying tournament began last October, seven months later than originally planned because of COVID-related lockdown measures and travel restrictions.

The schedules for matchday 5 and 6 are as follows:

Matchday 5

Thursday, March 25 (kick-offs shown in local time)

Bolivia vs. Peru (La Paz, 17:00)

Venezuela vs. Ecuador (Caracas, 18:00)

Friday, March 26

Colombia vs. Brazil (Barranquilla, 17:00)

Argentina vs. Uruguay (Santiago del Estero, 21:00)

Matchday 6

Tuesday, March 30

Ecuador vs. Chile (Quito, 16:00)

Uruguay vs. Bolivia (Montevideo, 19:30)

Paraguay vs. Colombia (Asuncion, 19:15)

Peru vs. Ecuador (Lima, 20:00)

Brazil vs. Argentina (Recife, 21:30)