Libertad takes the lead, but Athletico-PR gets a draw to advance in Libertadores

Athletico-PR did not have an easy life, but surprised Libertad in the middle of Defensores del Chaco (Photo: NORBERTO DUARTE / AFP)

Athletico-PR did not have an easy life, but surprised Libertad in the middle of Defensores del Chaco (Photo: NORBERTO DUARTE / AFP)

Photo: Launch!

If, on the one hand, Libertad focused solely on winning because of the 2-1 setback suffered in the Arena, in the first leg of the round of 16 of the CONMEBOL Libertadores, on the other, Athletico-PR was calmer due to the advantage built. However, the Paraguayans were willing to show their strength at Defensores del Chaco on Tuesday night. Still in the initial stage, striker Roque Santa Cruz, scoring a great goal, opened the scoring for the hosts, however, in the complementary stage, Rômulo tried to equalize the score by closing the score at 1 to 1, with the spot guaranteed for the hurricane.


Making the home factor count, Libertad didn’t wait long to surprise Athletico. In the first moves, after a good table, Caballero risked a shot that forced goalkeeper Bento to show service. However, the Brazilian team didn’t let it go and returned it with Vitor Roque, but the submission ended up stopping on Martín Silva.


Even with a more moving start, the game panorama remained the same until the middle of the 30 minutes. With the famous here and there, both teams betting on the offensive strength to find the goal, but ended up bumping into nervousness in some moves.

Until, in the final stretch, already in extra time, at 48 minutes, the experienced Roque Santa Cruz, managing to dribble past Nico Hernández and Pedro Henrique, finished a cross with no chance for the Hurricane archer. Open score at Defenders.


Despite the two coaches opting for changes in their respective teams, it was Libertad who returned better for the final stage. Until the middle of the 15th minute, he created two good chances with Melgarejo and Mendieta, but both without success.

Perceiving the better rival in the field, Felipão returned to retreat to his substitutes putting this time Vitor Bueno, Khellven, Rômulo and Marcelo Cirino, aiming to reinforce his attack. Already on the part of Daniel Garnero, the changes were with an eye on the midfield as the entries of Bareiro and Campuzano.


As time passed, tension took over the confrontation. Until, in the 44th minute, after a free kick by Khellven, Rômulo tried in the first one, which stopped in Martin’s defense, but took the rebound and sent it to the back of the net to equal everything.

In stoppage time, the Brazilian team tried to hold on as best they could. However, with the hosts unable to react, they only managed the much-celebrated result at the referee’s final whistle.



Date and time: 07/05/2022 – 21:30 (from Brasilia)

Place: Defensores del Chaco Stadium in Asuncion (PAR)

Referee: Andrés Cunha (URU)

Assistants: Richard Trinidad (URU) and Andrés Nievas (URU)

VAR: Carlos Orbe (EQU)

goals: Roque Santa Cruz, 48’/1st (1-0); Romulo, 44’/2nd (1-1)

Yellow cards: Abner Vinícius, 41’/1ºT; Vitor Roque, 17’/2ºT; Pedro Henrique, 28’/2nd; Ivan Piris, 36’/2nd; Barboza, 43’/2ºT; Matheus Fernandes, 50’/2ºT

RELEASED: Martín Silva; Iván Piris, Diego Viera, Barboza and Samudio; Marcelo Díaz (Campuzano, at 32’/2ºT), Caballero, Diego Gómez (Mendieta, at half-time) and Merlini (Bareiro, at 32’/2ºT); Melgarejo and Roque Santa Cruz (Óscar Cardozo, 41’/2ºT). (Coach: Daniel Garnero)

ATHLETICO-PR: Bento, Orejuela, Pedro Henrique, Nicolás Hernández and Abner Vinícius; Erick, Hugo Moura (Matheus Fernandes, at half-time) and Terans; Canobbio (Marcelo Cirino, at 30’/2ºT), Vitor Roque (Rômulo, at 30’/2ºT) and Cuello. (Coach: Luis Felipe Scolari)

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