From October 17th to November 8th, the sixteenth edition of the U-17 World Cup will be held along the eight cities that will provide their stadiums to play the matches: Santiago (National Stadium), Concepción (Municipal Stadium), Viña del Mar (Sausalito Stadium), Coquimbo (Francisco Sánchez Stadium), La Serena (La Portada Stadium), Chillán (Municipal Bicentenario Nelson Oyarzún), Puerto Montt (Chinquihue Stadium) and Talca (Fiscal Stadium). At the same time, there will be 24 teams from 6 confederations affiliated to FIFA participating in the tournament.
This one will be the fourth FIFA world competition that takes place in Chile, which previously hosted the 1962 FIFA World Cup, the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 1987 and the Women’s FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2008. With 52 matches and 24 teams competing, this will be the largest soccer event that has ever taken place in the country, given that in the three previous FIFA championships only 16 teams attended.
There is still uncertainty about whether Coquimbo will continue to be one of the host cities, since it has been declared in a state of emergency after the 8.4 earthquake that struck the area last week. The Francisco Sánchez Rumoroso Stadium, located in Coquimbo, has a capacity for 18,500 spectators, so it was planned to host all the matches of group A and B in the first phase of the tournament. It is worth mentioning that FIFA has not yet pronounced on the subject so, two weeks before the start of the event, it remains unclear if the plans will change.
Considering the victory achieved by the national team in the last Copa America 2015, this new sporting event will serve to measure the level of new generations of Chilean football. What is not in doubt is that Chile will enter the field to defend its position as the home team.