Guerrero the key for improving Peru
Manager Ricardo Gareca
In Peru they partied like it was 1982 after ending their long wait for a return to the World Cup and the one-time South American minnows confirmed their steady progress of recent years by earning their spot at football's top table.
Semi-finalists at the 2015 Copa America and quarter-finalists in the same tournament one year later, Peru, who comfortably overcame New Zealand in the playoffs, are up to the giddy heights of tenth in the Fifa rankings.
However, missing from that playoff success was their top goalscorer and best player, Paolo Guerrero, who failed a drugs test.
Guerrero is hugely influential but looks set to be able to play in the finals after having a one-year ban reduced to six months.
It would be a big loss for the World Cup if he is not there, with Jefferson Farfan having to take over as Peru's talisman.
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