Nashville SC striker Jhonder Cádiz will see his adventure with his national team continue: after contributing in World Cup Qualifying matches this week (a loss to Bolivia and draw against Uruguay), he’ll head to Brazil to take part in La Vinotinto‘s run at Copa América, the South American championship tournament.
Venezuela kicks off the tournament Sunday against host Brazil (a fill-on after geopolitical unrest and an ongoing pandemic, respectively, saw Colombia removed as host nations). Subsequent games in the competition’s North group come next Thursday against Colombia, and then the next two Sundays against Ecuador and Peru.
The 25-year old Cádiz would be out of the United States until June 27. Given that his loan spell with Nashville SC technically ends June 30, that could theoretically mean he’s played for the last time in Gold. However, the expectation has been that – despite NSC’s targeting Ecuadorian striker Michael Estrada – that Cádiz’s purchase clause from Portuguese power Benfica will be exercised.
Nashville will be without him for a trip to New York Red Bulls and home games against Toronto FC and CF Montreal, and should Cádiz join NSC permanently, it’s likely that he’d be back for a July 3 contest against Philadelphia Union. Venezuela is a heavy underdog in its group, but should La Vinotinto advance (all but one team in each five-team group emerges from group play, and Venezuela and Ecuador are likely battling to not finish last), the tournament runs through July 10 with a quarterfinal, semifinal, and final round.
Cádiz’s appearances in World Cup qualifiers this week signified his third and fourth caps for Venezuela. Fellow MLS striker Josef Martínez of Atlanta United is among the familiar faces for Nashville SC fans on the squad (and likely to get the lion’s share of playing time over Cádiz if it comes down to the pair of them).