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Macedonia to face Peru in February?

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Peru before the third place match at the Copa América; photo: peru.comPeru before the third place match at the Copa América; photo: peru.comThe national football team of Peru may come to Skopje for a friendly match near the end of February next year, Peruvian media reports.

According to media reports in Peru, the Football Federation of Macedonia (FFM) has sent an invitation to their counterparts from Peru for its national team to visit Skopje and face Macedonia in a friendly game towards the end of February next year.  The expectation is that the invitation will likely be accepted by Peru unless something unexpected occurs in the near future.

For instance, Peru had already confirmed a road friendly against Lithuania on that date (29 February 2012) but the match was recently cancelled.  If the Peruvians accept the friendly against Macedonia in Skopje, they will become the first national team to play at the newly renovated "National Arena Philip II of Macedon."  The field is currently being renovated but it should be fully completed by that date in late February.  As a reminder, Macedonia hosted Cameroon last February in a match that was played in bad conditions, something that should not happen this time if Peru decides to accept the invitation.

Peru had an extraordinary performance in this year's Copa América tournament in Argentina by finishing in third place and striker Paolo Guerrero being the top goalscorer with five goals.  To date, Macedonia has only played against Ecuador from the CONMEBOL zone.  In a friendly before the 2006 World Cup, Macedonia defeated Ecuador 2:1 on a neutral venue in Spain.  In one other occasion, Macedonia played against Paraguay (a 1:0 loss) but that match was not officially recognized by FIFA due to Macedonia playing with its B team.

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