Friday, 23 October 2009

Copa Sudamericana Quarter Final 1st Legs

Vélez Sársfield 1-1 Liga de Quito
River Plate Montevideo 0-1 San Lorenzo
Cerro Porteño 2-1 Botafogo
Fluminense 2-2 Universidad de Chile

My two favourites to lift the crown this year have ended up being drawn against each other in the last 8. I suspect the winner of this tie may well go on to lift the competition come finals time in December. So on Tuesday night Vélez and Liga da Quito met and it was the home side who got the best possible start when Hernan López headed the V ahead with only 6 minutes on the clock. Liga now have a wealth of experience on the big stage and managed to bag themselves an away goal 8 minutes into the second half when Claudio Bieler's remarkable equaliser gave Liga what could be a vital away goal.

At the Centenario in Montevideo, 10 man San Lorenzo grabbed the only goal of the game to take a vital advantage over River Plate. A header from Pablo Pintos claimed the only goal of the game 19 minutes from time but they will be without Juan Torres for the return match after he saw a straight red 9 minutes into the second half.

In Paraguay a game of three red cards saw the home team gain a small advantage to take into next weeks second leg at the Engenhão. Cerro Porteño took the lead through Carlos Recalde 10 minutes before half time but Botafogo grabbed what could be a vital away goal when Reinaldo struck 13 minutes into the second half after blocking an attempted clearance. Botafogo were then reduced to 10 men when Leo Silva received a red card for an alleged stamp and then Emerson was also dismissed with 10 minutes to go to reduce the visitors to 9 men for pulling back in the box, Roberto Nanni won the game for Cerro Porteño when he converted from the spot with 9 minutes to go but opening scorer Recalde stupidly got himself sent off in injury time for a kung fu style challenge.

Fluminense will be kicking themselves after letting a two goal lead slip against Universidad de Chile at the Maracaña. Mauricio Victorino unfortunately put the ball into his own net to give Fluminense a first half lead on the nod of the assistant and then Fred doubled the advantage at the second attempt a minute into the second half. But the frailties that have haunted Fluminense all year reappeared when Walter Montillo pulled a goal back with 51 minutes on the clock and then 6 minutes after that it was all square, Juan Olivera tapped the equaliser into an empty net to leave Universidad in the box seat to qualify for the semi finals.

The second legs take place in two weeks time (I believe).

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