Monday, 28 February 2011

Campeonato Paulista A1 - Week 10

Oeste 1-0 Linense
Santos 1-1 São Bernardo
Corinthians 4-0 Grêmio Prudente
Americana 0-1 Mogi Mirim
Santo André 0-2 Ponte Preta
São Paulo 1-1 Palmeiras
Ituano 3-1 Botafogo SP
Noroeste 0-0 São Caetano
Paulista 0-2 Mirassol
Portuguesa 0-0 Bragantino

Oeste made it five games unbeaten as they stay in "The Eight" after victory over a struggling Linense side who fell to their third straight defeat. One goal was enough for Oeste and it came with thirteen minutes on the clock from Anselmo Ramon. São Bernardo gained a 1-1 draw at the Vila Belmiro against Santos, a result that was enough to see coach Adilson Batista get the boot after just one victory in the last 5 league games. Elano went top of the scoring charts when he converted a penalty two minutes before the break but São Bernardo levelled half way through the second half courtesy of Raul. In the live Premier Sports TV game it was all over inside half an hour at the Pacaembu as Corinthians brushed aside Grêmio Prudente. Fábio Santos put Corinthians ahead from the spot with 13 minutes gone and Liédson took advantage of a goalkeeper error to double the lead six minutes later. When Dentinho added the third with 28 minutes gone it had the possibility of a six or seven goal thrashing about it, that dominant were Corinthians but they could only added a fourth five minutes from time when Liédson got his second of the game and his seventh of the season to leave the Musketeers the only undefeated side in the competition.

Mogi Mirim picked up their third was of the season when they surprised Americana. Zé Roberto got the winner for Mogi Mirim with a quarter of an hour gone, a result that lifts them into mid table. Americana, after their promising start have now dropped to the edge of "The Eight". Ponte Preta are now unbeaten in nine in all competitions after their 2-0 victory away at struggling Santo André. Renatinho put Ponte ahead with 27 minutes gone and Éverton Santos doubled the lead half way through the second half to wrap up the points. The big Sunday game at the Morumbi was delayed by a hour due to torrential rain as Palmeiras relinquished top spot after a 1-1 draw against São Paulo continued their poor run of results at the Morumbi. Fernandinho put São Paulo ahead with twenty five minutes gone but Adriano secured a point for the Big Green with a leveller six minutes from time. São Paulo finished the game with ten men after Alex Silva was sent off after clashing with Adriano but there was a cameo appearance for Rivaldo near the end of the game.

Ituano snapped a three game losing streak when they defeated a disappointing Botafogo SP. Éder Sciola put Ituano ahead from the spot with eleven minutes gone before Jonata Escobar doubled the lead just short of the half hour. Jefferson made it three twenty minutes from time before Anselmo got what turned out to be a consolation goal for Botafogo SP eleven minutes from time. No goals at Noroeste as the home side stay in the relegation zone after this result against São Caetano. Mirassol took advantage of Palmeiras' result in the Morumbi to go top of the table after a super 2-0 away win at Paulista. Gustavo Bastos put Mirassol ahead with fifteen minutes gone and Luis Henrique wrapped up the points thirteen minutes from time. Finally no goals at the Estádio de Canindé as Bragantino picked up a point at Portuguesa, a result that leaves them leading the chase to break into "The Eight".

Next weekend is Round 11 and they line up like this

Bragantino x Paulista
Ponte Preta x Americana
São Bernardo x Mogi Mirim
São Caetano x São Paulo
Linense x Corinthians Coverage on Premier Sports TV check listings for details
Palmeiras x Santo André
Mirasssol x Noroeste
Botafogo SP x Portuguesa
Oeste x Santos
Grêmio Prudente x Ituano

Campeonato Carioca - Taça Guanabara Final

Flamengo 1-0 Boavista

Ronaldinho Gaúcho converted a second-half free kick as Flamengo defeated Boavista 1-0 to win the Taça Guanabara. In only his sixth game with the Rubro-Negro, Ronaldinho Gaúcho lifted his first silverware after curling a right-footed shot over the wall with twenty minutes left to give Flamengo victory. It's the 19th Taça Guanabara title for Flamengo and puts them into the State Championship final, unless they go on to complete the double by adding the Taça Rio to their collection.

Flamengo dominated proceedings but had difficulties creating clear cut chances against a resilient Boavista side who reached the final after stunning Fluminense in last week's semi-final shootout. After Ronaldinho Gaúcho's goal his celebrations near the touchline saw several Flamengo players lined up behind him and start dancing. Boavista were reduced to ten men with twelve minutes to go after striker Carlos Frontini was sent off after an exchange with Renato.

Ronaldinho Gaúcho was a happy man, "I've always dreamed about this, these fans are wonderful. My goal is to return to the national team as soon as possible."

Since being founded in 2004, Boavista has still not defeated Flamengo in any fixture and the Taça Guanabara has been in the possession of the big four Rio clubs since Volta Redonda won the title in 2005


Picture © Globoesporte.com

Troféu Washington Rodrigues Final

Resende 1-1 Olaria
Olaria wins 3-1 on penalties

Olaria collected the Troféu Washington Rodrigues after defeating Resende 3-1 on penalties after the game finished 1-1 in regulation at the Engenhão. It was Resende who broke the deadlock with twenty minutes to go when Marcel put them ahead. The lead lasted only two minutes before Felipe levelled for Olaria. So with the scores level at 90 minutes the game went straight to penalties and it was Olaria who held their nerve to collect the trophy.

Friday, 25 February 2011

Copa Libertadores Group Stage - matchday 2

Group 1

Once Caldas 1-1 Libertad
Universidad San Martin 2-0 San Luis

Colombia's Once Caldas collected their first point of the campaign but will be kicking themselves for not getting all three at home to Libertad of Paraguay. Once Caldas took the lead on the half hour Dayro Moreno put them ahead. It looked like Once Caldas would collect all three points but they were denied when Victor Ayala levelled as the game went into injury time. Universidad San Martin of Peru top Group 1 after retaining the only 100% record after victory over San Luis of Mexico. Both goals came very late in the game, after 84 scoreless minutes Gianfranco Labarthe put the Peruvians ahead before Carlos Marinelli wrapped things up in injury time after San Luis went for broke.

Group 2

León de Huánuco 1-0 Oriente Petrolero
Junior 2-1 Grêmio

Peru's León de Huánuco kickstarted their campaign when they picked up their first victory of the campaign against Oriento Petrolero of Bolivia at the Estadio Heraclio Tapia. One goal was enough for León de Huánuco to get the win and it came from Carlos Zegarra with 34 minutes on the clock. Oriente Petrolero finished with ten men when Luis Gutiérrez was sent off in second half injury time. After their great start last week Grêmio of Brazil came crashing back to earth when they were defeated by Junior of Colombia. The Porto Alegre side got the perfect start though when they took the lead through Borges with just five minutes on the clock. Giovanni Hernández levelled for the home side with half an hour gone and John Viáfara won it for the Colombians with a quarter of an hour left to put them top of the group with a 100% record

Group 3

Fluminense 0-0 Nacional
Argentinos Juniors 3-1 América

Frustration for the Tricolor fans at the Engenhão and the Premier Sports TV viewers as Brazilian champions Fluminense were held to a goalless draw by Nacional of Uruguay. A result, even at this early stage of the competition leaves both teams with a huge ask to get out of the group. The night after, Argentinos Juniors went top of the group after a come from behind vistory over América of Mexico. The Mexicans took the lead through Daniel Montenegro with 27 mintues gone. Argentinos Juniors levelled right on the stroke of half time when Santiago Salcedo levelled from the spot and his second with seventeen minutes left put the home side ahead. The points were assured when Cristian Sánchez Prette added a third in injury time.

Group 6

Emelec 1-0 Jorge Wilstermann
Internacional 4-0 Jaguares

Emelec of Ecuador got their first win of the season when they needed a single goal to overcome Jorge Wilstermann of Bolivia in Guayaquil. That goal came ten minutes before the break from Eduardo Morente to leave the Bolivian side looking for their first goal and first point of the competition. Holders Internacional of Brazil went top of Group 6 after brushing aside the challenge of Mexican side Jaguares. Argentinian striker Mario Bolatti put Inter ahead with twenty minutes gone and his second a minute before the break doubled the lead. Leandro Damião made the points safe twenty minutes into the second half before Oscar put the icing on the cake in injury time.

Group 7

Cruzeiro 4-0 Guaraní
Estudiantes 1-0 Deportes Tolima

After smashing Estudiantes 5-0 in Sete Lagoas last week, Cruzeiro of Brazil made it two from two and NINE goals in their two games when they defeated Guaraní of Paraguay 4-0. Wallyson put Cruzeiro ahead on the half hour and he got his fourth of the competition so far when doubling the lead just after the hour. Two goals in the last four minutes gave the scoreline a more impressive look, Ernesto Farias made it three before Thiago Ribeiro wrapped things up in the last minute. After that thrashing last week in Sete Lagoas, Estudiantes got back on the horse when they picked up their first win of the campaign against Deportes Tolima of Colombia. Pablo Barrientos with the goal on the stroke of half time to give the 2009 champions a hope of making the last 16.

Group 8

Independiente 3-0 Peñarol

2010 Copa Sudamericana Champions Independiente of Argentina got their campaign off to a winning start when they Peñarol of Uruguay. All the goals came in the second half, Facundo Parra got the first two minutes into the half with Cristian Pellerano doubling the lead twenty minutes from time. Independiente got the result their dominance deserved when Andres Silvera got a third five minutes from time.

Plenty of games again next week as the Group Stage begins to take shape

Godoy Cruz v Peñarol
Deportivo Táchira v Colo Colo
Santos v Cerro Porteño LIVE on Premier Sports TV Wednesday 22:25
Nacional v Argentinos Juniors
Deportes Tolima v Cruzeiro
América v Fluminense
San Luis v Once Caldas
Vélez Sarsfield v Universidad Católica
Grêmio v León de Huánuco
LDU Quito v Independiente

Premier Sports TV is the new live home of South American football in the UK
You can subscribe at www.premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000


Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Old hands and new boys forge ahead

Gimnasia La Plata 1-3 Olimpo
Banfield 1-1 Colón
Argentinos Juniors 0-0 Independiente
Newell's Old Boys 2-1 Lanús
Vélez Sarsfield 1-2 All Boys
Racing Club 0-1 Boca Juniors
Quilmes 0-1 Estudiantes
River Plate 2-0 Huracán
Arsenal 2-0 Tigre
Godoy Cruz 0-2 San Lorenzo

The second round of fixtures are done and dusted in the Clausura and we're already down to two sides with 100% records. No surprises for reckoning on Estudiantes being one of them, but it's Olimpo who are up there with them. Promoted last time around, they did OK in finishing fourth from bottom in the Apertura, the worst of the three promoted clubs, but ahead of implosion victims Independiente, Gimnasia and strugglers Huracán. And it was Gimnasia who copped it from them last weekend in La Plata. Federico Dominguez put Olimpo ahead moments into the second half, turning a flick-on from a corner in as he was left unmarked at the back post. Gimnasia equalised through Jorge Cordoba, but though they forced Laureano Tombolini in the Olimpo goal to do far more work, they couldn't find a way through. Olimpo could and went back in front with twenty minutes left as an audacious lob came back off the bar to Ezequiel Maggiolo. Gaston Sessa's red card a few minutes later left Gimnasia with ten and Olimpo sealed a fine win with Martin Rolla's free-kick. Quilmes made a rod for their own back against the champions by having Enzo Kalinski sent off for a second booking just half an hour into their game and Gabriel Mercado's lovely swivel and finish on the stroke of half time was enough as Estudiantes bounced back from a Libertadores thrashing in midweek.

Premier Sports viewers watched Boca get off the mark against Racing thanks to Pablo Mouche's goal early in the second half. Very route-one, he latched onto a long through ball, his first touch was good and his second dinked between the keeper's legs. That was enough despite Diego Rivera seeing red late on for a second caution. The other TV game saw a bit of an upset as Vélez went down at home to All Boys. Ariel Ortega came off the bench for the visitors late on for a debut, but Sebastian Grazzini was the hero with a goal in each half. His first, in the 25th minute, was a cracker from the edge of the box into the top corner after some neat approach play, but it was cancelled out ten minutes after half time by David Ramierz's towering header. Vélez were level for barely two minutes though as Grazzini struck, again from the edge of the box after a goalmouth scramble broke down and the ball found it's way to his feet. First time, no backlift - bang. The game ended badly for All Boys though as they finished with nine, Carlos Soto picking up a second yellow and a straight red for Emmanuel Gigliotti as all order broke down.

Newell's got their first win by beating ten-man Lanús on Sunday. They were ahead seconds after half time through Claudio Bieler's terrific shot on the turn and though Diego Valeri equalised for Lanús, they were reduced to ten shortly afterwards when Santiago Hoyos saw yellow a second time. Newell's seized their chance, Juan Cobelli latching onto some defensive hesitancy and firing in the winner with a couple of minutes left. A first win too for River Plate, against the hapless Huracán, with two quickfire second-half goals doing the damage. First, Erik Lamela started and finished the move that cut open the Huracán rearguard far too easily before slipping it through the keeper's legs and Paulo Ferrari's diving header followed soon after. Huracán are awful at the back. Awful. Arsenal got off the mark against Tigre, who didn't help themselves by having Roman Martinez sent off on the half hour. They were already one down by then - Lisandro Lopez looping a header over the keeper from a deep free-kick - and conceded a second late on when a corner was cleared only as far as Jorge Ortiz on the edge of the D and he rifled it into the bottom corner. Arsenal were dominant throughout, no matter how many Tigre had on the field.

San Lorenzo put their first mark in the W column by beating Godoy Cruz who are brought to earth with a bit of a bump after tubbing Boca in week 1. In a game of few chances, the difference was the ability of Los Azulgrana to convert theirs. Juan Carlos Menseguéz was played in by a wonderful Pablo Velazquez flick pass to open the scores just after the break and Nahuel Benitez made it two deep in stoppage time, a long punt from the keeper right onto his forehead and in. It doesn't get more route one than that.

No goals and not many chances between Argentinos and Independiente and a draw too for Banfield and Colón. Jorge Achucarro put Banfield ahead in the sixth minute after showing great strength to engineer space on the edge of the box for a shot, but they were pegged back on the stroke of half time by Esteban Fuertes who was allowed a free header from three yards out.

There are some tasty clashes next weekend, nowhere moreso than at the Bombonera where All Boys are the visitors. There's as-live delayed coverage of that one on Premier Sports on Monday at 1:15am for all you night-owls. Estudiantes roll gracefully onward at home to Banfield and fellow leaders Olimpo welcome Godoy Cruz to Bahia Blanca. The other TV game sees River Plate away at Independiente and that's live late on Sunday.

Colón v Gimnasia La Plata
Olimpo v Godoy Cruz
Lanús v Quilmes
San Lorenzo v Racing Club
Boca Juniors v All Boys full delayed coverage on Premier Sports TV, Monday Feb 28, 1:15am
Tigre v Newell's Old Boys
Estudiantes v Banfield
Argentinos Juniors v Vélez Sarsfield
Independiente v River Plate LIVE on Premier Sports TV, Sunday Feb 27, 23:15
Huracán v Arsenal

Premier Sports TV is the new live home of South American football in the UK
You can subscribe at www.premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000


Monday, 21 February 2011

Campeonato Paulista A1 - Week 9

Corinthians 2-0 Mogi Mirim

In the Week Four catch up game Corinthians moved firmly into "The Eight" after a comfortable 2-0 victory over Migi Mirim at the Pacaembu. Both goals came in the second half from the man expected to fill the recently retired shoes of Ronaldo. Liédson fired Corinthians ahead with twenty minutes to go before being gifted his second four minutes from time after some stupidity from Mogi Mirim keeper João Paulo Barbosa.

Americana 2-0 Ituano
São Paulo 4-0 Bragantino
São Caetano 1-0 Portuguesa
Grêmio Prudente 0-2 Oeste
Santo André 0-4 Paulista
Corinthians 3-1 Santos
Mogi Mirim 0-0 Palmeiras
Mirassol 2-0 Linense
São Bernardo 2-0 Noroeste
Ponte Preta 3-1 Botafogo SP

Americana ended a run of three games without a win as they defeated Ituano. José Fumagalli's third goal of the season put Americana ahead just before the hour before Marcinho made the points sure twelve minutes from time. São Paulo made it back to back wins as they brushed aside Bragantino at the Morumbi. João Mirando put São Paulo ahead with eighteen mintues on the clock and Fernandinho doubled the lead two minutes before the break. Lucas made it three on the hour before Willian José wrapped things up fifteen minutes before time. São Caetano hauled themselves away from the relegation zone after their second victory of the season, Portuguesa their victims. One goal from Vandinho with fifteen minutes left was enough to separate the teams. Grêmio Prudente remain rooted to the foot of the table after yet another home defeat, this time to Oeste. Roger put the visitors ahead with 32 minutes gone and Fabio Gonçalves wrapped things up ten minutes after the break.

Last year's runners up Santo André remain in the relegation zone after crashing 4-0 at home to Paulista. Barboza set Paulista on their way with five minutes on the clock with Hernane doubling the lead with 33 minutes on the clock. João Paulo made it three half way through the second half before a Guigov own goal rubbed salt into the Santo André wounds. The big game of the weekend was at the Pacaembu as a Santos side on the back of a trip to Venezuela in midweek fell to their first Paulista defeat against Corinthians in the Premier Sports TV game. Full back Fábio Santos put Corinthians ahead half way through the first half but Elano's seventh of the season levelled matters five minutes before the break. A second for Fábio Santos on the hour restored the Corinthians lead before Liédson's third in two games wrapped things up four minutes from time. Palmeiras remain top of the table after a goal less draw at Mogi Mirim. A dull game of little chances was marred by Palmeiras' Bruno Cortez seeing red two minutes from time for a second bookable offence.

Mirassol moved into second after a 2-0 victory at home to Linense. Gustavo Bastos put Mirassol ahead seven minutes after the break before Xuxa's fifth of the season sealed the points six minutes later. São Bernardo hauled themselves out of the relegation zone after their second win of the season. Noroeste were the São Bernardo victims and they fell to two goals in the space of four first half minutes. Danielzinho with the opener after fifteen minutes before Dirceu doubled the lead. Botafogo SP's recent mini revival was bought to an end at Ponte Preta despite them taking a twelfth minutes lead through Assis. Ferron levelled for Ponte on the half hour and two minutes later Marcio Diogo had given them the Ponte the lead. Dirceu Lucas wrapped things up for Ponte Preta with the third six minutes before the break.

No midweek games as the Copa do Brasil takes centre stage again, Week 10 and the half way point of the regular season takes place next weekend with the highlight being the "Choque-Rei".

Paulista x Mirassol
Corinthians x Grêmio Prudente
Americana x Mogi Mirim
Santo André x Ponte Preta
São Paulo x Palmeiras
Ituano x Botafogo SP
Santos x São Bernardo
Noroeste x São Caetano
Oeste x Linense
Portuguesa x Bragantino

Campeonato Carioca - Taça Guanabara Semi Finals

Fluminense 2-2 Boavista
Boavista advances 4-2 on penalties
Flamengo 1-1 Botafogo
Flamengo advances 3-1 on penalties

In the Saturday Semi Final at the Engenhão, Boavista stunned Fluminense by winning in penalty shoot out to qualify for their first Guanabara final after the game finished 2-2 in 90 minutes. Fluminense took the lead with 8 minutes gone when a Marquinho free kick went over the wall and into the top corner. Boavista levelled three minutes later. Tony hammering a pile driver from 25 metres past Ricardo Berna and into the Fluminense goal. Fluminense went ahead again 8 minutes before the break, Dario Conca's free kick was just kept in by Rafael Moura whose header found Fred unmarked in the six yard area and he headed home.

Nine minutes after the break Boavista where level again when a Paulo Rodrigues found the out stretched foot of Andre Luis to find the back of the net and level matters. It stayed level at the conclusion of the 90 minutes and the game went straight to a penalty competition. During the penalties, Boavista keeper Thiago saved efforts from Conca and Rodriguinho while Boavista's Paulo Rodrigues, Tony, Frontini and Edu Pina converted each of their kicks to give Boavista the surprise win and put them into next weekends final.

In the Sunday Semi Final at the Engenhão, penalties were also required are Flamengo ended Botafogo's two year reign as Guanabara holders after defeating the Alvinegro 3-1 on penalties. Ronaldo Angelim put Flamengo ahead when he headed home after fourteen minutes a lead they were to take into the break. Botafogo drew level four minutes into the second half when "El Loco" Sebastian Abreu fired home from twelve yards to tie the game and ensure a shoot out.

So, for the second day in a row it was to be penalties that would decide the outcome of the game. It all went sadly wrong for Botafogo. Leo Moura, Renato and Fernando all scored their penalties for Flamengo but Felipe saved from Everton and Somália before Ranato Cajá put his effort wide of the right hand post to put Flamengo into next Sunday's final as they look for their first Guanabara success since 2008.

Troféu Washington Rodrigues Semi Finals

Resende 1-1 Bangu
Resende advances 5-4 on penalties
Nova Iguaçu 1-3 Olaria

In the Saturday semi final, Resdende advanced to the final of the Troféu Washington Rodrigues after defeating Bangu in a penalty shoot out. Resende took the lead with 27 minutes gone when Wellington put them ahead. Ricardinho levelled for Bangu four minutes after the break and it remained that way until the 90 minutes was up. The game went to penalties and Resende held their nerve but Thiago Galhardo missed for Bangu to send Resende into the final. In the only semi-final of the weekend not to go to penalties, Olaria will meet Resende after a 3-1 victory over Nova Iguaçu at the Engenhão. Despite going to behind on the half hour, Olaria were level by half time and two second half goals sealed things.

Friday, 18 February 2011

Copa Libertadores Group Stage - matchday 1

After Argentinos Juniors and Fluminense kicked us off a week ago, the rest of the Copa Libertadores group stage kicked off this week. There's lots to get through so let's get straight to it.

Group 1

San Luis 1-2 Libertad
Once Caldas 0-3 Universidad San Martín

Two away wins in Group 1 where Peru's Universidad San Martín struck it big in Colombia. They were in front late in the first half as they pulled Once Caldas apart down the left and Heber Arriola was on hand to tap in. German Alemmano provided that one and scored the second himself, latching onto a long through ball, beating the offside trap - such as it was - and beating the keeper one-on-one. Arriola's second sealed it, a 35-yarder that Nayim would have been proud of. Paraguayans Libertad are on a hot streak right now and engineered their sixth straight win in all competitions with a win in Mexico and they were ahead through a deft flicked header from Nicolas Pavlovich inside twenty minutes. Another header squared it up five out from half-time as Juan Manuel Cavallo thundered one in at the back post from a corner, but Sergio Aquino's second half penalty restored the lead for Los Repelleros and a San Luis comeback was made much harder when Ignacio Torres was sent off late on.

Group 2

Léon de Huánuco 1-2 Junior
Grêmio 3-0 Oriente Petrolero

Grêmio take early charge of group 2 after thumping Bolivian league leaders at the Monumental. One of the more ludicrous handballs you could wish to see gave Douglas the chance to open the scoring from the penalty spot which he wasn't about to turn down. That came a few minutes from half time and a few minutes after it, Gilson made it 2-0 after a goalkeeping howler. Douglas added a third as Oriente were overwhelmed. A 20-yard thunderbolt from John Viafara - alumnus of Portsmouth and Southampton - gave Junior the lead in Huánuco midway through the first half. Some edge-of-the-box trickery gave Carlos Bacca the space to make it two and they held on for the win despite losing Jose Amaya to a second yellow card and a late goal back for the home side, a tremendous volley from Carlos Elias.

Group 3

América 2-0 Nacional

With Flu and Argentinos having already played, there's just one game to catch up on here, with Mexicans América comfortably beating Uruguay's Nacional. The writing was on the wall early when a deep cross from the right found it's way across the penalty area to where Vicente Sanchez was lurking to turn it in. Early in the second half, Nacional were caught out again as Vicente Vuoso hit one on the turn from 18 yards.

Group 4

Vélez Sarsfield 3-0 Caracas
Unión Española 2-2 Universidad Catolica

The all-Chilean tie finished level, but only thanks to a stoppage time penalty from Braulio Leal to rescue a point for Unión. After a goalless first half, Unión hit the front a few minutes into the second as Leonardo Monje hooked one in at the back post. Cue the comeback by La Catolica as Lucas Pratto headed them level and Fernando Meneses thrashed in a second in the space of five minutes, but it wasn't to be. Caracas didn't help themselves in Buenos Aires by having Louis Peña sent off early on. Vélez made the numbers count and went ahead through Maxi Morales's 25-yarder in the last minute of the first half. After the break, it was one-way traffic with David Ramirez firing in a screamer from wide out on the right and a late penalty from Juan Manuel Martinez adding to the scoreline.

Group 5

Deportivo Táchira 0-0 Santos
Cerro Porteño 5-2 Colo Colo

No goals in San Cristóbal where Santos were held by a combination of the frame of the goal - Neymar struck the post in the first half - Táchira keeper Manuel Sanhouse in fine form and an early offside flag the one time Santos got the ball in the net. Meanwhile in Asunción, Cerro Porteño went goal crazy at home to Colo Colo. Roberto Nanni and Juan Iturbe both got doubles and it was Nanni with the first as goalkeeper and defender got in a horrible tangle and another failure to clear allowed Julio dos Santos to double the lead. The game wasn't ten minutes old yet. Cristobal Jorquera pulled one back with a cracking strike on the quarter hour, but Cerro reasserted themselves after the break. Iturbe started and finished the move to restore the two goal advantage - probably goal of the round - and Nanni got his second from the penalty spot after Fredy Bareiro was dragged down by the keeper. Esteban Paredes got a consolation for Colo, but the last word went to Cerro and Iturbe who spun away from his marker and finished with the outside of the left boot.

Group 6

Emelec 1-1 Internacional
Jaguares 2-0 Jorge Wilstermann

Inter were denied all three points by a late, late Fernando Gimenez header after Mario Bolatti had earlier nodded the Brazilians in front. Gimemez got across his marker at a free-kick to snatch a draw. That allowed Jaguares to take control of the group with a home win over Bolivian side Jorge Wilstermann. Tidy passing by the Mexicans allowed Antonio Salazar in for the opener and Ricardo Esqueda sealed it, reacting quickest to a parried shot as the Wilster defence was opened up all too easily.

Group 7

Deportes Tolima 1-0 Guaraní
Cruzeiro 5-0 Estudiantes

The shock of the round came in Belo Horizonte where reigning Argentine champions and 2009 Libertadores winners Estudiantes copped a right rare gubbing from Cruzeiro, all played out live on Premier Sports. Wallyson and Walter Montillo got two each as Los Pincharattas were humbled. There was 55 seconds on the clock when Wallyson's shot took an awful deflection to loop over Agustin Orión and in for the opener and Cruzeiro kicked on to lead 3-0 by half time. Roger waltzed through the shambolic defence to double the lead and Montillo's first came as Cruzeiro engineered a four-on-one situation. Estudiantes thought they'd cleared their lines on the hour, but Montillo met the clearance on the run to volley in the fourth and Wallyson added a fifth late on, though it's not clear how much he knew about it. By contrast, the game in Ibagué was very low key. Not that that will bother the home side who won it with a late one from Danny Santoya, a 20-yarder as Guaraní (of Paraguay, not Brazil) failed to clear.

Group 8

Godoy Cruz 2-1 LDU Quito

Just one game to report on in the final group as well with Independiente and Peñarol due to meet next Thursday. 2008 winners LDU were beaten in Mendoza by Godoy Cruz and ended with ten men. Carlos Sanchez swooped on a loose clearance to fire Godoy ahead on the quarter hour, but LDU got back square shortly after half time through a nicely worked move that ended with Neicer Reasco heading in at the back post. They were level for just seven minutes before Nicolas Sanchez headed Godoy back ahead. LDU finished a man down after Fernando Hidalgo was sent off late on.

There's another set of fixtures next Thursday, the pick of which is Estudiantes's home clash with Deportes Tolima. Can the Apertura champions from Argentina recover from that humping in Brazil? You can find out with Premier Sports' live coverage.

Cruzeiro v Guaraní
Universidad San Martín v San Luis
Emelec v Jorge Wilstermann
Once Caldas v Libertad
Léon de Huánuco v Oriente Petrolero
Internacional v Jaguares
Estudiantes v Deportes Tolima LIVE on Premier Sports TV, 0045GMT, Thursday Feb 24
Fluminense v Nacional
Independiente v Peñarol
Argentinos Juniors v América
Junior v Grêmio

Premier Sports TV is the new live home of South American football in the UK
You can subscribe at www.premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000


Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Boca thumped on opening day

Estudiantes 2-1 Newell's Old Boys
Independiente 2-2 Vélez Sarsfield
Olimpo 2-1 Banfield
San Lorenzo 1-1 Gimnasia
Colón 2-0 Quilmes
All Boys 0-1 Racing
Boca 1-4 Godoy Cruz
Tigre 0-0 River Plate
Lanús 3-1 Arsenal
Huracán 1-1 Argentinos Juniors

In the first of Premier Sports' live games from the Primera Divisíon, champions Estudiantes began their defence with a narrow win over Newell's in La Plata. A game of few chances was won in the first half by Los Pincharratas as Gaston Fernandez got on the end of a flowing move down the right for a 13th minute opener and, ten minutes later, a ball was lifted into the box for Gabriel Mercado who slipped it past the advancing keeper. It could have been worse for Newell's as Enzo Perez was pulled back in the box a couple of minutes from the break, but Hernandez saw his penalty saved. Newell's did get one back, Mauricio Sperdutti teeing up Juan Cobelli for a tap-in, but it came way too late - just a few seconds from the end of the 90.

On Sunday, Premier Sports viewers saw Boca Juniors ripped a new one by Godoy Cruz. An early double from Ruben Ramirez set Godoy on their way, the first a free header after the keeper let a deep cross slip through his arms. He had to work a bit harder to lose his marker for the second, but it was still a tap-in from five yards as the Boca defence was pulled this way and that. They look a shambles. It got worse for them after the break as Adrian Torres stole in round the back to half-volley in a third, but Boca got one back almost instantly as Walter Erviti was found by a neat cut-back and finished from 12 yards. It proved scant consolation in the end as Godoy went and added a fourth late on when Carlos Sanchez beat the keeper in a one-on-one as the Boca defence went AWOL once again.

Vélez came from two down to rescue a draw against Independiente, substitute Juan Manuel Martinez with the equaliser ten minutes from time. Facundo Parra headed El Rojo ahead from a corner early on and Roberto Battion sent them to the interval two up, again with a header as a deep free-kick was nodded back into the danger area by Maxi Velazquez. Vélez needed something quickly to give them a chance and it came within 65 seconds of the restart as Maxi Moralez sprang the offside trap - he was a good three yards onside - and finished one-on-one. Independiente were content to try and sit on it, but when a ball was lifted into the box, keeper Hilario Navarro came and got nowhere near it allowing Martinez to nip in and square things up. There were draws too for Tigre and River Plate - no goals despite plenty of shots flying in - and Huracán and Argentinos. Huracán led for most of the game having scored a second-minute penalty from Javier Campora, but were denied a minute from time by Nicolas Blandi who snuck round the back to prod in a dramatic equaliser. Gimnasia, in deep bother in terms of relegation, drew with San Lorenzo who led thanks to Juan Carlos Menseguez's superb shot on the turn on the quarter hour. The equaliser came midway through the send half from the penalty spot, Juan Neira converting after Guillermo Barrios was upended.

A second half double from Esteban Fuertes saw Colón past lowly Quilmes. His first, five minutes after half time, was goal of the round, a stunning 30-yard free-kick from the inside left channel into the bottom right corner. Twenty minutes later, he hit another - more central this time - over the wall and in to seal the win. Two stoppage time goals denied Arsenal a point at Lanús after Juan Pablo Caffa looked to have rescued a point for El Arse. A stooping header from Diego Valeri gave Lanús the lead ten minutes into the second half, but Caffa's brilliant free-kick looked to have levelled it up. Mauro Camoranesi hadn't been on the field long when he gave the foul away as he picked up where he left off after a miserable spell with Stuttgart. He atoned for his mistake with the killer ball for Mario Regueiro to head Lanús back ahead in the first minute of stoppages and Silvio Romero in the fifth fired in a third.

There was no Ariel Ortega for All Boys as they were completely outplayed by Racing, even if they only had Gabriel Hauche's late goal to show for it, the 24-year old twisting and turning in the box to create space and rifle the shot in off the upright. Carlos Salom's last minute strike nabbed all three points for Olimpo as they came from behind to beat Banfield who led three minutes into the second half thanks to Victor Lopez's powerful near-post header. David Vega squared it up 15 minutes later with a stunner from fully 30 yards and the Aurinegro comeback was complete as Salom followed in a shot which was parried into his path in the first minute of stoppages.

Boca are on Premier Sports next week as well, away to Racing on Monday while the other game sees All Boys pay Vélez a visit, hopefully with Ortega in tow. That one's on Sunday. Godoy are the early leaders and are at home to San Lorenzo while Estudiantes should be comfortable away to Quilmes.

Gimnasia La Plata v Olimpo
Banfield v Colón
Argentinos Juniors v Independiente
Newell's Old Boys v Lanús
Vélez Sarsfield v All Boys Delayed coverage on Premier Sports, Sunday 20 Feb, 22:30
Quilmes v Estudiantes
River Plate v Huracán
Racing Club v Boca Juniors Delayed coverage on Premier Sports, Monday 21 Feb, 00:15
Arsenal v Tigre
Godoy Cruz v San Lorenzo

Premier Sports TV is the new live home of South American football in the UK
You can subscribe at www.premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000


Monday, 14 February 2011

Campeonato Paulista A1 - Week 8

Santos 2-0 Noroeste
Palmeiras 1-0 Americana
Linense 0-1 Grêmio Prudente
Botafogo SP 2-0 Santo André
Paulista 0-0 Corinthians
Portuguesa 2-3 São Paulo
Mirassol 3-1 São Caetano
São Bernardo 0-1 Ponte Preta
Bragantino 2-1 Ituano
Oeste 1-1 Mogi Mirim

With their Libertadores campaign starting in Venezuela next week Santos opened the weekend up on Friday night when Noroeste were the visitors. And Santos will head off to Venezuela in good heart after a comfortable 2-0 victory. With nine minute gone Zé Eduardo opened the scoring with his fourth of the season before Felipe Anderson wrapped things up twenty minutes from time. In the delayed game on Premier Sports TV, Palmeiras remain top of the table after defeating Americana at the Pacaembu. One goal separated the sides and it came nine minutes into the second half from Kléber. Grêmio Prudente picked up their first win of the season, and their first since the 7th November when they triumphed away at Linense. Again only one goal in the game and it came from Saldanha with half an hour gone. Botafogo SP seem to be over their recent slump as they made it back to back victories after success over Santo André. Augusto Fassina put Botafogo ahead with just three minutes on the clock and Anselmo doubled the lead half an hour later.

In the live Premier Sports TV offering on Sunday there were no goals but plenty of chances as Paulista held Corinthians. In an entertaining game there were plenty of chances but the better ones fell to Paulista who kept Júlio César busy in the Corinthians goal. Rogério Ceni edged closer to his 100th career goal as São Paulo got back on track with a 3-2 win at Portuguesa. Fernandinho put São Paulo ahead after half an hour before Ceni's free kick doubled the lead six minutes before the break, the 97th of his career. Heverton pulled a goal back twelve minutes after the break but Rhodolfo restored the two goal advantage of São Paulo fifteen minutes from time. Heverton reduced the gap gain with his second four minutes from time but São Paulo held on for victory. Mirassol remain in third after a come from behind victory over a São Caetano side that took the lead through Aílton on the half hour. Wellington Amorim levelled for Mirassol four minutes later and they went into the break ahead courtesy of Diego Correa. Despite having Esley sent off on the hour Mirassol further extended their lead nine minutes from time when Xuxa got his fourth of the season.

Ponte Preta sneaked back into "The Eight" after their victory at São Bernardo put the home side to the bottom of the table. The only goal of the game came with less than a minute on the clock from Romulo. Bragantino remain in the play off positions after victory at home over Ituano. All the goals came in the first half, Finazzi put Bragantino ahead half way through the half before his second doubled the lead ten minutes later. Rafael Malaquias halved the deficit for Itano three mintues before the break but that's the way it finished and a third win of the season for Bragantino. Finally, Oeste dropped out of "The Eight" after they left it very very late to claim a draw with Mogi Mirim. Zé Roberto put Mogi Mirim ahead four minutes after the break and with them looking to get their third win of the season Anselmo Ramon grabbed an equaliser for Oeste in injury time.

This week's fixtures are as follows.

Week 5 catch up

Corinthians x Mogi Mirim

Week 9

Americana x Ituano
São Paulo x Bragantino
São Caetano x Portuguesa
Grêmio Prudente x Oeste
Santo André x Paulista
Corinthians x Santos
Ponte Preta x Botafogo SP
Mogi Mirim x Palmeiras
Mirassol x Linense
São Bernardo x Noroeste

Keep an eye on our twitter for confirmation of the Live Premier Sports TV offering at the weekend

Campeonato Carioca - Taça Guanabara Week 7

América 0-9 Vasco da Gama
Flamengo 1-0 Resende
Nova Iguaçu 3-5 Boavista
Americano 2-1 Volta Redonda
Madureira 0-1 Fluminense
Olaria 1-0 Bangu
Cabofriense 2-0 Duque de Caxias
Botafogo 1-1 Macaé

In the only Saturday game, Vasco finally hit some form when they smashed América in Volta Redonda. The game was over as a contest within the first 23 minutes, Fágner opened proceedings after four minutes before a brace from Ramon and Felipe made it four. Marcel made it five with just 25 minutes on the clock and Enrico got the sixth before the break. Vasco took the foot off the pedal in the second half but still added three further goals from Caique, Jeferson and a second for Enrico. Flamengo go into the semi-finals the only undefeated side in the competition as they ended the play off hopes of Resende with a single goal win in Macaé. Needing a draw to progress to the semi-finals Resende held on grimly but they were finally opened up 15 minutes from time by Deivid. A sad end to a promising campaign from Resende.

It meant the other semi-final spot went down to a shoot out in Nova Iguaçu, where Boavista were the visitors. It was the visitors who took the lead right on half half time through Max and then a minute into the first half they doubled their lead courtesy of Leonardo Chaves. Nova Iguaçu hit back a minute later through Marquinhos and levelled seven minutes later when Leonoardo struck. Max then restored the Boavista lead on 65 minutes and Erick Flores restored the two goal gap. News filtered through from Macaé and Boavista knew they needed a two goal victory but disaster struck a minute from time when Maycon reduced the deficit. Boavista threw bodies forward and grabbed the goal they needed three minutes into stoppage time when Max completed his hat-trick. Americano finally got their first win of the season when they defeated Volta Redonda. Gustavinho put Americano ahead after fifteen minutes but Pedro Henrique levelled ten minutes before the break. The winner came nine minutes from time from Felipe, a result which meant they they leapfrogged América in the table and climbed off the bottom of Group A.

Botafogo blew the chance to finish top of Group B, and avoid Flamengo in the semi-finals, when they were held at home by Macaé in the surprise result of the day. Robson stunned the small Engenhão crowd when he put the visitors ahead seven minutes before the break. Although Renato Cajá levelled three mintues after the break, Macaé held on the claim the draw and make Botafogo's route much harder to reclaim their crown. The main beneficiaries of all this were Fluminense who claimed top spot in Group B after victory at Madureira. With their Libertadores campaign now underway it was a sluggish Fluminense who struggled to get going at times. They goal they needed came fifteen minutes from time when Rafael Moura got his fifth goal of the week to hand the Tricolor a semi final against Boavista.

Olaria ended up claiming third spot in Group B after they defeated nearest rivals Bangu. One goal was enough to separate the sides and it came from Waldir two minutes after the break. And finally, Cabofriense picked up their first win of the season when they defeated an under strength Duque de Caxias side which had it sights set on the Taça Rio. Two second half goals in the space of twelve minutes from Everton Santos were enough to give Cabofriense the victory but it was a case of too little, too late as they finished bottom of Group B.

Semi final time in the Taça Guanabara and Torneio Moisés, they are single game elimination contests with penalties at the end of 90 minutes if the scores are level.

The line up like this

Taça Guanabara

Flamengo x Botafogo
Fluminense x Boavista

Torneio Moisés

Resende x Bangu
Olaria x Nova Iguaçu

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Campeonato Paulista A1 - Week 7

Santo André 1-1 Santos
Noroeste 4-1 Mogi Mirim
Americana 1-1 Oeste
Palmeiras 0-1 Corinthians
Ituano 2-0 São Bernardo
Botafogo SP 2-1 São Paulo
Bragantino 1-3 Mirassol
São Caetano 2-1 Paulista
Grêmio Prudente 3-3 Portuguesa
Ponte Preta 1-1 Linense

A round split over 5 days opened on Saturday with Santos picking up their third draw in the last four games, this time at lowly Santo André. Marcelo Godri put Santo André into a shock lead with just five minutes on the clock but former Manchester United player Rodrigo Possebon levelled for Santos on the stroke of half time to leave them unbeaten but not top of the table. Noroeste picked up their first win of the campaign with a 4-1 thrashing in Mogi Mirim. Ze Roberto put Mogi Mirim ahead after twenty minutes but José Carlos replied seven minutes later and Aleílson put Noroeste ahead five minutes later. A second for José Carlos from the spot fourteen minutes from time put the game safe and Diego wrapped things up four minutes from time. Americana and Oeste both remain in "The Eight" after a late late goal rescued a point for the visitors. When Charles put Americana ahead with twenty minutes left it looked like that would be enough but as they game went into injury time Anselmo Ramon grabbed an equaliser for Oeste.

The big game of the round was at the Pacaembu for the "Derby Paulista" between Palmeiras and Corinthians. After a midweek defeat in Colombia and the fans reaction on their return Corinthians had a lot to prove to their fans and they did. Winning it eight minutes from time courtesy of Alessandro and the subsequent celebrations were bizarre to say the least. Ituano picked up their second win of the season after a 2-0 success over struggling São Bernardo. The goals came late, Daniel opening the scoring with just ten minutes left and a penalty from Anderson Salles in injury time wrapping things up. Botafogo SP finally kick started their season with a first victory of the year coming against São Paulo. Anselmo put Botafogo ahead four minutes before the break and Paulinho doubled the lead seventeen minutes from time. Marcelinho Paraíba pulled a goal back in injury time for São Paulo but it was too little too late.

Mirassol climbed to fourth after an impressive at Bragantino. Esley put Mirassol ahead six minutes before the break but Luciano Sorriso levelled just before half time. It looked like honours were going to be even but Xuxa grabbed a winner Mirassol in injury time. São Caetano made it back to back wins, this time defeating Paulista. Two goals in the last eight minutes of the first half from Vadinho put São Caetano in charge. Rone Dias pulled a goal back for Paulista two minutes into the second half but they couldn't find the equaliser.

In the games held over to midweek, Grêmio Prudente picked up there second point of the season with a battling draw against Portuguesa. Saldanha put Grêmio Prudente ahead with just six minutes on the clock but Luis Ricardo levelled twelve mintues later. A second for Saldanha twenty minutes from time put Grêmio Prudente back ahead but five minutes later Kempes levelled and Tata put Portuguesa ahead for the first time three minutes later. Grêmio Prudente didn't give up and Jandson levelled the game four minutes from time. Finally Ponte Preta still remain outside "The Eight" after a third consecutive draw, this time against Linense. Renathino put Ponte Preta ahead with twelve minutes on the clock but Fausto levelled for Linense eight minutes later and both teams settled for a point.

Week 6 Catch Up

Corinthians 4-0 Ituano

Corinthians made it back to back wins when they "took advantage" of their Libertadores exit to stage one of their outstanding games against Ituano. Full of confidence after their win against Palmeiras on the Sunday, Luís Ramírez had Corinthians ahead within two minutes. Chicão doubled the lead with twenty minutes on the clock but the Corinthians fans had to wait until fifteen minutes from time before Liédson made it three. Corinthians put the icing on the cake when Liédson got his second and the teams fourth in injury time.

Coming up this weekend is Round 8 and they line up like this

Santos x Noroeste
Palmeiras x Americana
Linense x Grêmio Prudente
Botafogo SP x Santo André
Paulista x Corinthians
Portuguesa x São Paulo
Mirassol x São Caetano
São Bernardo x Ponte Preta
Bragantino x Ituano
Oeste x Mogi Mirim

Argentinos caught by the Flu - Copa Libertadores Group 3

Fluminense 2-2 Argentinos Juniors

In the Live Premier Sports TV game, Brazilian champions Fluminense twice came from behind to share the points with Argentinos Juniors of Argentina in the opening Copa Santander Libertadores Second Stage clash. Argentinos Juniors striker Franco Niell gave his side the lead on the stroke of half-time but Rafael Moura hit back for the hosts to level things just before the hour.

Fluminense were rocked again when they fell behind for a second time when Niell from grabbed his second with 20 minutes remaining. Argentinos were looking to give their campaign the perfect start, but Moura struck his second four minutes later to ensure a share of the spoils for the Tricolor and the second consecutive game that Moura has got two goals since arriving from Goiás.

The fixture between Deportes Tolima and Guaraní was resheduled for next week.

Next week the rest of the teams join the action, the fixtures are as follows

Deportes Tolima v Guaraní
Vélez Sarsfield v Caracas FC
San Luis v Club Libertad
Deportivo Táchira v Santos
América v Nacional
Unión Española v Universdad Cátolica
Emelec v Internacional
Cruzeiro v Estudiantes LIVE on Premier Sports TV 0000GMT Thursday
Jaguares v Jorge Wilstermann
Once Caldas v Universidad San Martin
León de Huánuco v Junior
Grêmio v Oriente Petrolero
Cerro Porteño v Colo Colo
Godoy Cruz v LDU Quito

Premier Sports TV is the new live home of South American football in the UK
You can subscribe at www.premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000


Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Champions kick off Clausura

It's Clausura time once again and everyone's gearing up for another frenetic season. It's the last time we'll have the Apertura/Clausura system before it goes to a more traditional home and away, 38 game league. However, the Promedio system will be retained when the new structure takes hold and the end of this campaign will see three teams bow out.

Estudiantes held off Vélez Sarsfield to take the Apertura title, but they were dealt a major blow when coach Alex Sabella, the former Sheffield United player, walked out on the club, apparently over a disagreement regarding transfer policy. One thing that is obvious is that Sabella never saw eye-to-eye with on-field leader, talisman and all-round genius Juan Veron who will lead the side once again. La Brujita, now 35, continues to stroll around the midfield in that languid style like he owns the place. Which is fair enough, because he pretty well does. Eduardo Berizzo takes over at short notice, fresh from working alongside Marcelo Bielsa with the Chilean national side. Sabella or no Sabella, Los Pincharratas are still the side to beat and they kick off the new competition on Friday night against Newell's Old Boys at 22:00 GMT, a game you can see live in the UK with our good friends at Premier Sports. Newell's, coached by Roberto Sensini these days, have Claudio Bieler in on loan from Racing to provide some punch after their Apertura campaign rather petered out.

The other TV game this week is Boca Juniors v Godoy Cruz on Sunday at 22:10 GMT. Lots of movement at Boca over the off-season with Julio Cesar Falcioni taking the managerial reins after a couple of successful years with Banfield. Pablo Mouche was set to leave - to West Ham where he would be the new Marco Boogers - but work permit problems mean he's still around and doubts remain over Juan Riquelme's continued involvement with the club. The venerable Martín Palermo goes round again at the age of 37 alongside the more youthful, but equally slow Lucas Viatri. Godoy had a good Apertura, eventually finishing a respectable fifth. They've taken the exciting Ruben Ramirez on loan from Colón after he scored 14 goals over the last two competitions in the colours of Banfield.

At least Boca aren't in trouble on the Promedio, unlike bitter rivals River Plate. Finishing fourth in the Apertura means they have a little breathing space. They also managed to hang to Rogelio Funes Mori and begin against Tigre. Olimpo and Quilmes, both promoted last time around, find themselves bottom of the Promedio, but good campaigns this time around will really put the cat among the pigeons. Quilmes have a tough tip to Santa Fe to face Colón while Olimpo have an equally tough prospect at home to Banfield. Gimnasia are the other side that start in the bottom three on the table and they've really been on the slide over the last few seasons. Former River boss Angel Cappa comes in to try to arrest the slide, but decline looks terminal and they've a tough start against San Lorenzo who are a better side than their 14th placed Apertura finish suggests.

Vélez were runners-up last time and have the prolific Santiago Silva up front alongside Mexican star Guillermo Franco and they look to be the most likely challengers to Estudiantes's crown once again. They're away to Independiente first up, the side that finished dead last in the Apertura. They did, however, somehow manage to win the Copa Sudamericana and can't possibly be as bad again as last time around.

Of the sides promoted last time, All Boys were far and away the best and they've made a bit of a transfer scoop by nabbing Ariel Ortega after he was told he no longer featured in River Plate's plans. While staying in the top flight will still be the priority, if Ortega fires, they can mount a real tilt at the Sudamericana places and they have a winnable fixture first at home to Racing Club. Arsenal were good last season and begin away from home against Lanús while both Huracán and Argentinos Juniors will both be happy to keep their heads above water. They face each other this weekend, both eager to get a headstart on the other.

A reminder then that the two games televised this week in the UK on Premier Sports this week are Estudiantes v Newell's on Friday the 11th at 22:00 and Boca v Godoy Cruz on Sunday the 13th at 22:10. And we'll have a review of all the goings on after the final game in the wee hours of Tuesday morning UK time.
Premier Sports TV is the new live home of South American football in the UK
You can subscribe at www.premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000


Monday, 7 February 2011

This Week on Premier Sports

This week on Premier Sports TV, SKY Channel 433, the group stages of the Copa Santander Libertadores begins with the Group Three fixture between the Champions of Brazil, Fluminense of Rio de Janeiro and the Argentinian Clausura Champions of 2010 Argentinos Juniors. The game is at the Engenhão Stadium, the home of the 2016 Olympic games, kicks off at Midnight on Thursday.

The Copa Libertadoes Round Up Show, which will feature the above game plus Deportes Tolima and Guaraní is on Friday night.

Friday also sees the launch of the coverage of the Clausura in Argentina when Apetura champions Estudiantes de La Plata entertian Newell's Old Boys of Rosario at 2200GMT. Then on Sunday it's off to La Bombonera for the home opener of the world famous Boca Juniors against Libertadores qualifiers Godoy Cruz. Program for this starts at 2210GMT.

Premier Sports TV is the new live home of South American football in the UK
You can subscribe at www.premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000

Campeonato Carioca - Taça Guanabara Week 6

Resende 1-2 Nova Iguaçu
Bangu 2-2 Cabofriense
Macaé 2-2 Madureira
Vasco da Gama 3-0 Americano
Boavista 2-3 Flamengo
Volta Redonda 2-0 América
Duque de Caxias 4-2 Olaria
Fluminense 2-3 Botafogo

Nova Iguaçu will go into the last week of the Taça Guanabara with a chance of making the semi finals after victory at nearest rivals Resende. Amaral put Nova Iguaçu ahead with 18 minutes on the clock before William doubled the lead fifteen minutes from time. Marcelo Regis pulled a goal back as the game went to injury time for Resende and they now need a results against Flamengo in their last game to make it into the semi finals. Cabofriense picked up their first of the season despite throwing a two goal lead away against Bangu. Léo Itaperuna put Cabofriense ahead nine minutes after the break and André oliveira doubled the lead twelve minutes later. However Pipco halved the deficit and Somália levelled matters six minutes from time. Madureira made it three games without defeat after an away draw at Macaé. Danile put Macaé ahead half way through the first half but Edivaldo levelled and then Douglas Assis put Madureira into the lead at the break. Macaé claimed a point when Hyantony levelled from the spot five minutes from time. Vasco da Gama climbed off the bottom of Group A when they finally picked up their first win of the season against Americano. Marcel put Vasco ahead ten minutes before the break and Dedé doubled the lead eight minutes into the second half. Jeferson Silva wrapped things up ten minutes from time.

Flamengo guaranteed top spot in Group A as they remain unbeaten despite being given a good work out by Boavista. A first goal in the Rubro-Negro for Ronaldinho Gáucho from the penalty spot opened things up for Flamengo. Deivid doubled the lead four minutes into the second half but two minutes later Frontini pulled a goal back. When Frontini levelled twelve minutes from time it seems Flamengo would lose their 100% record but Negueba came to the rescue seven minutes from time. Volta Redonda picked up their first win of the season as they triumphed over América. Jean Carlos put Volta Redonda ahead on the stroke of half time and Bruno Barra made certain of the points ten minutes from time. Duque de Caxias came from a two goal deficit to record their first victory of the season over Olaria. Renan Silva put Olaria ahead with 32 minutes gone and Felipe doubled the lead five minutes later, on which the took into the break. Somália got Duque de Caxias back into the game six minutes into the second half and Juninho levelled on the hour. Rodrigo Dantas then edged Duque de Caxias into the lead 10 minutes from time and a second for Somália wrapped things up two minutes later.

The round finished with the big clash at the Engenhão between Fluminense and Botafogo, the Clássico Vovô. It was a feisty affair with numerous yellow cards, two red cards and five goals as Botafogo went back to the top of Group B. Renato Cajá's super free kick put Botafogo ahead half way through the first half but Rafael Moura levelled for Flu seven minutes later. Then came the red cards as things threatened to boil over, Valencia of Fluminense went first for a second booking and the Botafogo captain Marcelo Mattos went next. In between all of this Renato Cajá was denied a second when his free kick clearly crossed the line but was not give and when Jefferson in the Fogo goal mishandled a Conca free kick Rafael Moura got his second to put Fluminense ahead. Botafogo then got a life line when they were awarded a penalty but Sebastian Abreu tamely chipped the ball into the goalkeepers hands. He then got a second opportunity two minutes later and this time levelled matters. Then six minutes later German Herrera put Botafogo ahead for the second time and they held on the hand Fluminense their first defeat of the season ahead of their Libertadores opener on Wednesday night. Well worth watching the 15 minutes of highlights on the link above.

No midweek games in the Carioca this week, with it being the last round of the Guanabara every game kicks off at 1700 (Local) next Sunday. With second place up for grabs in Group A they line up like this

Flamengo x Resende
Nova Iguaçu x Boavista
América x Vasco da Gama
Americano x Volta Redonda
Madureura x Fluminense
Olaria x Bangu
Cabofriense x Duque de Caxias
Botafogo x Macaé

Friday, 4 February 2011

Campeonato Paulista A1 - Week 6

Oeste 1-0 Botafogo SP
Paulista 0-0 Noroeste
Ponte Preta 2-2 Santos
Portuguesa 1-0 Americana
Mogi Mirim 1-1 Santo André
Mirassol 0-1 Palmeiras
São Paulo 3-2 Linense
Bragantino 3-0 São Bernardo
São Caetano 1-0 Grêmio Prudente
Corinthians P-P Ituano Now Tuesday 15th February

Oeste kept themselves in "The Eight" after victory over a struggling Botafogo SP side. One goal was enough to split the teams and it came from Roger with twenty minutes on the clock. No goals at the Estádio Dr. Jayme Pinheiro de Ulhôa Cintra as draw specialists Noroeste made it 5 draws out of six games against Paulista. The result keeps Noroeste in the relegation zone but seems Paulista drop out of "The Eight". Santos were deposed as leaders after twice having to come from behind to claim a point at in form Ponte Preta. Romulo put Ponte Preta ahead half way through the first half but competition leader scorer Elano levelled for Santos five minutes before the break. Renatinho restored the Paulista lead from the spot twelve minutes into the second half but Maikon Leite rescued Santos five minutes from time to join team mate Elano at the top of the goal scoring charts. The pair now account for 12 of the 18 goals Santos have scored so far this season.

After back to back defeats Portuguesa got back to winning ways and back into "The Eight" after victory at home to Americana. The visitors came crashing back to earth after their 5-1 weekend victory courtesy of Heverton's 28th minutes strike. The defeat leaves Americana four points off the top of the table. Mogi Mirim remain on the fringes of "The Eight" despite letting a lead slip against Santo André and having to settle for a point. Val put Mogi Mirim ahead just after the half hour but Borebi levelled the game fifteen minutes from time. Santo André remain a point out of the relegation zone but only on goal difference. Palmeiras took advantage of the slip up by Santos to go two points clear at the top of the table after the fifth straight win. Mirassol were in decent form going into the fixture and the win for Felipão's men gives an indication they will there or thereabouts come play off time. One goal settled the game and it came from Patrick thirteen minutes from time.

38 year old former world footballer of the year Rivaldo made his debut for São Paulo against Linense after joining on a 12 month loan. Linense hasn't read the script and they took the lead six minutes after the break when Eric bundled the ball home. The star attraction, Rivaldo, levelled matters 5 minutes later with a cool finish before Marlos put São Paulo ahead seven minutes later. A superb Rogério Ceni free kick made it three with five minutes to go before Alessandro ensured a nervous few moments for the home side when he pulled a goal back for Linense as the game went into injury time. Bragantino sneaked into "The Eight" after a comfortable victory over São Bernardo. Juninho Quixada put Bragantino ahead with just six minutes on the clock and he doubled the lead six minutes before the break. As the game went into injury time Juninho Quixada completed his hat-trick to wrap things up and put him on five for the season. Grêmio Prudente just go from bad to worse as they were cast adrift at the bottom of the table after yet another defeat, this time at São Caetano. One goal was enough to separate the sides and it came from Aílton with just seven minutes on the clock.

Corinthians clash with Ituano was postponed due the Copa Libertadores commitments.

The big clash of the weekend is "The Derby Paulista" at the Pacaembu where Palmeiras will look to "stick the boot in" after Corinthians Copa Libertadores exit in midweek.

Santo André x Santos
Noroeste x Mogi Mirim
Americana x Oeste
Palmeiras x Corinthians
Ituano x São Bernardo
Grêmio Prudente x Portuguesa
Ponte Preta x Linense
Botafogo SP x São Paulo
Bragantino x Mirassol
São Caetano x Paulista

Campeonato Carioca - Taça Guanabara Week 5

Boavista 0-1 Resende
América 3-1 Americano
Madureira 2-1 Cabofriense
Olaria 1-1 Macaé
Bangu 1-1 Botafogo
Flamengo 1-0 Nova Iguaçu
Vasco da Gama 0-0 Volta Redonda
Fluminense 3-1 Duque de Caxias

Resende put themselves in the box seat for the Taça Guanabara semi-finals after victory in the big game of the round. It was Resende in second against Boavista in third at Estádio Eucy Resende de Mendonça with the winners being ideally placed to qualify for the semi finals. Only one goal separated the sides and it came five minutes after the break from Kim. América got their first win of the season after success against Americano. Two goals in the opening 23 minutes from Hugo and Leandrinho put América in control. Felipe Adão made it three five minutes after the break but Diego got a consolation for Americano on the hour. Madureira and Cabofriense, two sides without a win all season, met to give them the ideal opportunity to break their duck. It was Madureira who took home he three points despite falling behind to a Wagner goal four minutes before the break. Edivaldo levelled on the stoke of half time and Maciel won it nine minutes from time. Olaria and Macaé finished all square to leave both teams with no chance of making the semi finals. Osmar put Macaé ahead with just two minutes on the clock but Victor levelled for Olaria ten minutes after the break.

Botafogo's winning run was surprisingly ended at Bangu, who gave themselves an outside chance of making the semi-finals. You would have assumed it was was business as usual for Botafogo when Sebastian Abreu put them ahead with 25 minutes on the clock but Abilio stunned the Alvinegro with an equaliser thirteen minutes from time. The big story of the week though was the arrival of 40,000 spectators at the Engenhão to witness the debut of Ronaldinho Gáucho in the red and black shirt of Flamengo. Nova Iguaçu were meant to be the side show but they showed resilience to constantly deny Flamengo. Five minutes from time through the Nova Iguaçu defence finally cracked and Wanderley got the winner to all but put Flamengo into the semi-finals. Vasco da Gama remain bottom of Group A despite picked up their first point of the season. A 0-0 home draw with Volta Redonda isn't going to enthuse the fans at the São Januário but it's a start and things can only get better from here. Fluminense took advantage of Botafogo's slip up at Bangu to go top of Group B. Fred put the Tricolor ahead eight minutes after the break but Marlon Ventura stunned the Engenhão with the equaliser four minutes later. Fred's second restored the lead with seventeen minutes to go and the former Olympique de Lyonnias striker completed his hat-trick a minute from time to wrap things up.

The Clássico 'Vovô is the highlight of the weekend, a clash which will decide the destiny of Group B. They line up like this

Boavista x Flamengo
Resende x Nova Iguaçu
Bangu x Cabofriense
Vasco da Gama x Americano
Volta Redonda x América
Duque de Caxais x Olaria
Macaé x Madureira
Fluminense x Botafogo

Copa Libertadores 1st Stage 2nd Leg

This Copa Libertadores review is bought to you in association the Premier Sports, the home of South American football in the UK

Deportivo Quito 1-0 Independiente
3-3 on points, Independiente advances on goal difference
Jaguares 2-0 Alianza Lima
Jaguares advances 6-0 on points
Deportes Tolima 2-0 Corinthians
Deportes Tolima advances 4-1 on points
Grêmio 3-1 Liverpool
Grêmio advances 4-1 on points
Unión Española 0-0 Bolívar
Unión Española advances 4-1 on points
Deportivo Petare 1-1 Cerro Porteño
Cerro Porteño advances 4-1 on points

Copa Sudamericana champions Independiente made it into the Group Stages of the competition, they will take their place in Group 8, despite a defeat at Deportivo Quito. Having a two deficit to claw back from their trip to Buenos Aires the Ecuadorian club could only halve the aggregate deficit when Michael Quiñónez scored two minutes after coming on as a 55th minutes substitute. Jaguares of Mexico will go into a strong looking Group 6 after completing their safe passage when a 2-0 win over Alianza Lima of Peru. The visitors facing were facing a two goal deficit and they didn't help their cause when Edgar Villamarín was sent off just short of the half hour. Michael Pedroza put Jaguares ahead with twenty minutes to go and Antonio Salazar wrapped things up five minutes later with the second.

We mentioned last week that Corinthians would have an uphill task to qualify for Group 7 and so it proved as Deportes Tolima of Colombia proved too strong for the Brazilian side in Ibagué. After a scoreless first leg the deadlock was finally broken 25 from time when Danny Santoya put Deportes Tolima ahead. Corinthians task then got harder when Luis Ramírez was sent off with 18 minutes to go but the tie was all over when Wilder Medina got a second for Tolima 12 mintues from time. In the live Premier Sports TV game, Grêmio took their place in Group 2 but only after being given a run for their money by Liverpool of Uruguay. After the 2-2 draw in Montevideo last week the Uruguayans took the lead ten mintues before the break when Emiliano Alfaro gave them a shock lead. That lead though lasted for all of three minutes before André Lima levelled on the night and in the tie. Ten minutes after the break Liverpool's Michael Acosta was dismissed and two minutes later Grêmio were ahead through Vinícius Pacheco. A second for Pacheco sixteen minutes from time wrapped up the tie for Grêmio, who will be confident of progressing from Group 2 given the opposition.

Unión Española of Chile advanced into Group 4 after a 0-0 home draw against Bolívar of Bolivia. A game of few chances saw the Bolivian side become frustrated and it all boiled over when Ronald Garcia was sent off half way through the second half when he picked up his second booking of the game. The result means that Unión Española will face Santiago rivals Universidad Católica in the group stage. Cerro Porteño of Paraguay were the last side to make it into the group stage and they will go into Group 5 after a draw in Venezuela against Deportivo Petare. Deportivo, looking to claw back the deficit from the first leg a week ago were ahead after fourteen minutes through Victor Guazá, However Cerro Porteño got the equaliser and a vital away goal from Roberto Nanni nine minutes before the break. Deportivo substitute John Cordóba was shown a straight red card six minutes from time to cap off a bad night for the Venezuelan side.

Highlights will be on Premier Sports tonight at 2330.

The Group stages begin with two games next week.

Fluminense v Argentinos Juniors - LIVE on Premier Sports TV 0000 GMT Thursday 10th February
Deportes Tolima v Guaraní

Premier Sports TV is the new live home of South American football in the UK. You can subscribe at www.premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000


Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Watch Liverpool live tonight!

CONMEBalls are pleased to announce a partnership agreement with Premier Sports TV.

Located on SKY Channel 433, Premier Sports is the new home of Live South American Football in the UK. Covering a live Copa Libertadores game a week, with a highlights show on Friday night, Premier Sports TV will be beaming the best of South America's major club tournament direct into your living room. This week you can see the First Stage Second Leg tie between Grêmio of Brazil and Liverpool of Uruguay. The tie is delicately poised after a 2-2 draw in Montevideo last week.

Starting on Friday February 11th, Premier Sports begin their coverage of the Clausura League in Argentina. Opening with Apertura champions Estudiantes de La Plata against Newell's Old Boys and quickly followed on Sunday 13th February when Boca Juniors take on Godoy Cruz at La Bombonera. Two live games a week will be shown from the Argentinian league.

Matthew Horton, lead contributor at CONMEBalls said, "I'd like to thank Premier Sports TV for coming on board with the blog. This will be my third year of covering the Copa Libertadores, Copa Sudamericana and Campeonato Brasileiro. The blog is currently in the second year of it's coverage of the State Championships of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. Coverage-wise, we will be reintroducing the Argentinian league to reflect the live coverage provided in the UK by Premier Sports TV. We hope this association will see us expand our readership in the UK to enable us to bring the delights of South American football to a wider audience."

The Live game on Premier Sports TV this week is Grêmio v Liverpool which will be shown tonight at Midnight, with the Copa Libertadores Round Up show every Friday at 2330GMT.

Premier Sports TV is the new live home of South American football in the UK. You can subscribe at www.premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000