Barcelona Sports Club achieved, on Tuesday evening, a 0-0 draw in its visit to America Mineiro in Belo Horizonte, and it will determine its place in the group stage of the Copa Libertadores 2022 next week in Guayaquil.
The Canary Islands let victory slip away at the Arena Independencia in Argentina’s Jorge Celico’s first appearance on the golden bench in the Libertadores, after the departure of his compatriot Fabian Bustos to Santos Club.
And striker Carlos Garces missed a penalty kick in the 90 + 1 minute after a foul inside the penalty area by Brazilian goalkeeper Gilson on midfielder Michael Carslin.
On several occasions, the 40-year-old goalkeeper saved his shots from close range and kept the face of America Mineiro high, for the first time in the international tournament, for the second leg of the third stage that will be played next Tuesday in Guayaquil.
The “Rabbit” Marquinhos Santos, a hundred-year-old from Minas Gerais, was not ashamed of the people of Guayaquil, a semi-finalist from the last cup and who in Brazil suffered four men lost to injury, including midfielders Eric Castillo and Damien Diaz.
Without Castillo or Diaz, who are two types of attacks, the Ecuadorians struggled to adapt in the first few minutes, although they still had clear chances of beating Gilson.
Winger Jonathan Berlaza sent a cross (28) from the right from the left flank that passed near the post, while Uruguayan Gonzalo Mastroianni (34) later demanded Palmeiras’s saver with a powerful shot in the upper left corner.
The Brazilians responded with a low shot from Wellington Paulista (38), after a pass from Juninho, which was kept away by captain Javier Burray.
From there, and despite the fact that both techs removed the payroll, the attacks were evident in their absence.
Despite having the best chances to score, Barcelona, who had eliminated Universitario de Peru in the previous stage, looked uncomfortable in front of a cheerful team eager to continue writing their meager history in the cup.
Silico warned on the eve of the match of the importance of taking advantage of the speed and physical strength of his wings, but he did not count on his opponents stealing the ball from him and played it without complications.
Despite their possession of the ball, Mineros struggled to get past the Ecuadorean defense and turn their possession into danger, unlike what they did in a three-goal comeback against Paraguay Guarani in the second stage.
Because of their dominance, they sometimes neglected the back guard and the visit threatened to take advantage of Guayaquil, but Garcés hit the penalty kick a bit off Jailson’s right post.
In the last moments of the match, the “rabbits” almost sang victory. Lucas Cale was hand in hand with Boray, but the Argentine risked his life and prevented the Brazilians from celebrating another heroic night, like the one in Asuncion. (Dr)
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