Atlético Nacional and Olimpia drew 2-2 this Tuesday in an intense match for the third day of Group H of the Copa Libertadores which was a new edition of the final of the tournament in 1989.
In a two-way duel played in the areas of the Atanasio Girardot stadium in Medellín, the Colombians twice took the lead with scores from Dorlan Pabón, the tournament’s top scorer with six goals, and center-back Cristian Castro Devenish.
Meanwhile, the Paraguayans equalized on two occasions with goals from Fernando Cardozo and the Argentine Facundo Bruera.
With this result, Verdolaga, trained by the Brazilian Paulo Autuori, kept the group lead with seven points, while the Dean is second with five. Melgar is third with one unit, while Patronato is last without points.
Nacional and Olimpia, a hand-in-hand match
The Paraguayans, led by the Uruguayan Diego Aguirre, tried to dominate and came close with two shots, one from veteran Richard Ortiz and another from Cardozo that goalkeeper Kevin Mier saved without much difficulty.
However, the hosts appealed to the long game and had their first clear opportunity at minute 14 in a counter-attack in which winger Andrés Román sent a cross that forward Jefferson Duque headed in and Uruguayan Gastón Olveira saved.
The Dean, meanwhile, responded four minutes later with a free-kick shot from Hugo Fernández that demanded Mier, who responded and avoided the celebration.
The match, which turned into a blow by blow between two teams that went out looking for the goal without fear of being exposed, broke at 25 when Pabón, on a rebound from a corner kick, shot from more than 30 meters away that was going so strong that it was impossible for Olveira to stop.
In the second half, the match maintained its intensity and Olimpia equalized just two minutes after the kick-off. Fernández took advantage of a mistake at the start by Castro Devenish and enabled Guillermo Paiva, who saw Cardozo arrive at the far post who only had to send the ball into the back of the net.
The teams continued to attack, but the locals seemed clearer and that was how at minute 64, in a corner kick, midfielder Yerson Candelo sent a cross in which Castro Devenish claimed responsibility and sent the ball into the back of the net.
The hosts seemed to control the game, but the Paraguayans equalized in a play that started with a long kick from the goalkeeper, which Hugo Quintana crossed, Cardozo went down in the area and Bruera defined at minute 77.
After that play, Atlético Nacional smashed a ball into the post at 81, while Quintana almost made it 2-3 on a counterattack a few minutes later.
In the 94th minute, the attacker Juan Manuel Romero, who came on in the second half, was sent off for two yellow cards.
On the next day, scheduled for May 24, Olimpia will visit Patronato, while Atlético Nacional will look for the three points at Melgar’s house.
More sports news