Colombia prepares for exhibition matches with Belgium and Netherlands


Colombia’s national soccer team will feature two new changes approaching its friendly exhibition matches with Belgium and the Netherlands on November 14 and 19 respectively.

In searching for the perfect lineup for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, Colombian Coach Jose Pekerman will be playing around with his starters for friendly matches with two of Europe’s already qualified teams.

Defender Eder Alvarez Balanta from Argentina’s River Plate Soccer Club and forward Victor Ibarbo from Italy’s Cagliari Calcio will be the principle new additions to the starting lineup approaching Belgium and the Netherlands.

Midfielder Edwin Valencia from Brazil’s Fluminense and defenders Stefan Medina from Medellin’s own Atletico Nacional and Santiago Arias from the Netherlands’ PSV Eindhoven will also possibly be tapped to start in the coming weeks.

These players are also getting the opportunity to represent Colombia due to Pekerman’s caution with some injured favorites. David Ospina from France’s OCG Nice, Mario Yepes from Italy’s Atalanta BC, Juan Fernando Quintero from Portugal’s Oporto, and Camilo Zúñiga from Italy’s Napoli are all sitting these two games out to continue to heal in time for the summer of 2014.

Belgium is sitting at a comfortable 5th place in FIFA’s world rankings, just behind Colombia at 4th place.  The Netherlands are ranked 8th in the world.


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