Job done… just.

The Uruguayan press are today up in arms over Defensor Sporting’s failure to get past River Plate in the Copa Sudamericana on Tuesday night, and it seems they’ve got every right to be. River played very poorly, allowed the visitors a good half-dozen clear scoring chances, but an inspired performance from Juan Pablo Carrizo, and some poor finishing, saw the match finish 0-0 and River advance on away goals.

In River’s first home match since the imperious superclásico win over Boca, there was a carnival mood before the game but once it started, it seemed they still had something of a hangover from celebrating that victory. The visitors were given time and space, and played into it well. All that lacked was the finish. And then at the death, Fernando Belluschi had a golden opportunity to kill the tie off, but messed it up as well. A match of errors, but River advance.

Since two sides from the same country (Argentina) have made it this far, the semi-final draw is now re-jigged so that they play each other. CONMEBOL don’t like having all-one-country finals following the 2005 and 2006 Copas Libertadores, both of which saw all-Brazilian showpieces after the Copa had never previously been contested between two sides from the same country. So, River will play Arsenal. Exactly when, I don’t yet know, because CONMEBOL haven’t yet made the necessary adjustments to the tournament fixtures on their website…

3 thoughts on “Job done… just.

  1. Just a coment: 21 years ago, October 29th 1986, River Plate won for the first time the Libertadores Cup. That cup was the only one River didn’t have at that time. River won it again in 1996 and, acording to the number, they should have won it in 2006. But that didn’t happen.

  2. Correction: they should have been in the final in 2006. They also got that far in ’66 and ’76, losing out both times. 2006 was the first time River have failed to reach the final in a year ending in ‘6’ (and they’ve never done it in a year that didn’t)…

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