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Conmebol take control of rights for 2016 Copa America

Published 10/17/2015, 3:03 AM EDT

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SANTIAGO (Reuters) – The South American football confederation has taken over the management of sponsorship and rebroadcast rights for the 2016 Centenary Copa America, the confederation (CONMEBOL) said on Friday.

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The move sidelines Argentine company Datisa and removes another obstacle to hosting the tournament in the United States.

“Conmebol and Datisa have agreed to rescind all the commercial rights that Datisa had for the sale of sponsorship and rebroadcasts associated with the Centenary Copa America,” a Conmebol statement said.


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“Conmebol will take control of those commercial rights while they together with the CONCACAF and the United States Soccer Federation will identify new partners to sell the tournament’s commercial rights through a new and transparent process.”

Three of the main shareholders in Datisa were among those indicted by the U.S. in May during a crackdown on worldwide football corruption which has tarnished FIFA’s reputation.

The U.S. indictment said the three men conspired to win and keep hold of lucrative media rights contracts from regional soccer federations through the payment of up to $110 million in bribes.

The three, Alejandro Burzaco, Hugo Jinkis and his son Mariano Jinkis, are all Argentine citizens.

Burzaco has been extradited to the United States and is out on bail after pleading not guilty. The Jinkis’s have been released from house arrest but cannot stray from their places of residence longer than 24 hours without a judge’s permission.

They have surrendered their passports while a judge seeks more information from U.S. authorities.


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Their indictments were one of the reasons the future of the 2016 Centenary Copa America was thrown into doubt.

Another issue is whether heads of top Latin American confederations will travel to the U.S.. Some bosses are thought to fear arrest if they set foot in the country.

Although the Copa is usually contested every four years by teams from South America, a special centenary version was announced for next year with teams from all over the Americas.


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The Copa America was first held in 1916 and is the oldest international tournament in the world.

(Writing by Andrew Downie, reporting by Felipe Iturrieta, editing by Ken Ferris)

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Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.
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