copa america extra time rules

Extra Time Rule at Copa America 2024: All You Need to Know About CONMEBOL Knockouts

The Latin American major international tournament Copa America 2024 is going to begin its journey in the USA this summer. From June 21 to July 15, 16 soccer-playing nations (10 teams from South America, 6 teams from Africa) will lock horns for the silverware. Meanwhile, CONMEBOL has introduced a new extra time rule in this competition that will be crucial in the knockout stages of the tournament this time around.

It’s not the first time, Copa America competition has witnessed this type of change in rules. Three years ago, Lionel Messi’s Argentina also benefited from this kind of regulation when they skipped the extra-time play against Colombia after drawing 1-1 after the end of regulation time. However, they won the penalty shootout with a 3-2 margin to progress to the final. Later, they went on to be the champions, beating their old rival, Brazil, in the final. Having said that, let’s have a look at the new Copa America extra time rules.

Copa America Extra Time Rules

Copa America 2024 Groups
Copa America 2024 groups (Credit: CONMEBOL)

The Copa America 2024 will consist of four groups, in which 16 teams will battle it out to book a berth in the quarter-finals. The top two teams from each group will reach the first knock-out stage. According to the new rule introduced to the Copa America 2024, the two halves of a total of 30 minutes of play have been axed, meaning if the score line is deadlocked after the regulation period, the winner of the game will be decided through a penalty shootout. There will be no play for 30 minutes of extra time. 

This rule will be applicable for all the quarter-final, semi-final, and third-placed games in the Copa America competition. If any team doesn’t want to go to penalties and leave their fate at the hands of their goalkeeper, then they must find a winner before the referee blows the final whistle.

Also Read: Argentina Squad for Copa America 2024: Who’s in and Who’s out, Key Players and Predicted Line-Up

Copa America 2024 Final Tie-breaker

Argentina players celebrate their win vs Colombia in 2021 (Credit: Getty)

The final of the Copa America 2024, however, will be an exception to the new rule of CONMEBOL. Unlike other Knockout games, the final game will have an extra-time play of 30 minutes if the scores are level after the end of the regulation and extra time given by the referee. 

Then, both teams playing in the final will have to play for another half an hour to produce a winning goal, meaning the game time will be extended out to 120 minutes in total. If no team manages to score, then the winner will be decided by a penalty shootout. 

This rule is not new for the Copa America tournament. In 2021, CONMEBOL decided to introduce this no extra-time rule to the soccer tournament to decrease the players’ workload, who were already suffocated by a hectic club football schedule. The second semi-final of that edition between Argentina and Colombia ended in a 1-1 draw after the clock struck the 90th-minute mark. La Albiceleste won the game on penalties (5-3) and booked a spot in the final showdown against Brazil.

The Copa America 2024 is set to be hosted by the USA. It is the second time, the non-CONMEBOL nation is going to host this soccer tournament, having done so previously back in 2016. Just like that edition, 16 teams will participate in Copa America 2024. The top ten teams from South America will take part alongside six African nations. The CONCACAF teams had to go through a qualification round to earn a spot in this soccer competition. The defending champions, Argentina, will play against Canada in the curtain raiser of Copa America on June 21st. And the final game of the tournament will be held on 15th July.

Also Read: Where and how to watch Copa America 2024 live for free?