The national teams of South American countries compete in the Copa America. In it, the 11 CONMEBOL member countries compete against each other every four years. Moreover, occasional invited guest teams often round out the field.

Massive as it is, the 2024 Copa America will return to the US for the first time since 2016. But this isn’t just any old Copa. It will be the first time the tournament has ever been conducted on a regular basis outside of South America.

For these teams, this event ranks right up there with winning the World Cup as the pinnacle of honors. Comparable continental championships include the UEFA Euro in Europe, the Gold Cup, the Africa Cup of Nations, and others.

What did Tab Ramos say about USMNT’s Copa America chances?

According to many analysts, this is the last serious competition the national squad will face until the 2026 World Cup. A strong performance is crucial to boost morale and get the ball rolling towards the World Cup.

Tab Ramos was a member of the USMNT during two very distinct Copa Americas. Both occasions were one-of-a-kind for the ex-midfielder, widely regarded as one of the most gifted Americans of all time.

Ramos has outlined the exciting prospects fans and Gregg Berhalter’s squad can expect from the world’s oldest national team event.

“I think certainly there are no easy groups. If you look in general in the USMNT’s group you see Uruguay, obviously you can say the best team in the group, they will be one of the big favorites to win the tournament. It’s a tough game but one our national team needs to play”, he told Bolavip.

“Then you look at Panama and Bolivia, Bolivia is not having a good moment right now. They’ll have a tough time. But Panama is probably in the best moment they have been in, in a long, long time. I think Panama won’t be an easy game for everyone in the group. It will be tough for Uruguay and tough for the US.

“Having said that, I think the US has to have the expectations to get out of that group, and then move on to play either Brazil or Colombia as first or second of the other group because we have known from Uruguay in the past, they get off to slow starts in the early rounds.

High expectations and character test

“Getting Colombia or Brazil will be a huge test, and it will test the character of the team that we have, and I have said this before, I played in a Copa America where we came in fourth.

“I also helped coach in a Copa America where we also reached fourth, there not easy, and at times expectations can’t be that high, but I think with this group unfortunately they have to be that high. I think anything less than making it to the semifinals is falling short of where we want to be.

“This tournament will require us to upset teams and if you go back 30 years ago, we were doing just that, we were beating Brazil, Argentina, Germany, Portugal, we were winning these games. At some point, you have to start winning games you’re not supposed to win, and I think this summer, I am looking for our national team to do just that.

Photo credit: IMAGO / ZUMA Wire