SAO PAULO (AP) — Ecuador held a below-strength Brazil to a 1-1 draw on Sunday to safe a spot within the Copa America quarterfinals.
Neymar, defender Thiago Silva and striker Gabriel Jesus did not play in opposition to Ecuador on the Olimpico Stadium in Goiania.
The draw moved Ecuador to fourth spot in Group B, eliminating Venezuela and sure organising a quarterfinal match in opposition to Argentina. Brazil had already secured prime spot within the group earlier than the match started, permitting coach Tite to proceed testing his lineup with a watch on the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
The defending champions opened the scoring within the thirty seventh minute with a header by Éder Militão after a nook. Angel Mena equalized for Ecuador within the 53rd when he completed with an angled shot in entrance of goalkeeper Alisson. The draw ended a streak of 10 consecutive Brazil wins.
Brazil’s subsequent problem will probably be both in opposition to Uruguay or Chile, the 2 groups which may end fourth in Group A.
Ecuador coach Gustavo Alfaro feels sure his crew will face Argentina within the subsequent stage of the event, however provides the draw with Brazil offers him confidence.
“We all know who we’re and that we will have a great sport like those we had in opposition to Colombia, Peru and Brazil. There isn’t any motive why we could not do it in opposition to Argentina,” stated Alfaro, who’s Argentinian. “We respect the hierarchy of Colombia, Uruguay, Brazil and Argentina, however we do not concern. I need them to play like they’ve performed to this point.”
Brazil defender Marquinhos stated the sport in opposition to Ecuador was necessary for Brazil “so all gamers of the squad might have at the least a while of play, so everybody may be prepared when knockout begins.” “Additionally,” he added, “gamers who had been drained had some relaxation to allow them to go to the knockout and play their finest.”
Marquinhos additionally expressed concern in regards to the pitch on the Nilton Santos Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, the place Brazil will play within the quarterfinals and, if it wins, within the semifinals of the event.
Peru beat Venezuela 1-0 with a objective by André Carillo from shut vary within the forty eighth minute. The Venezuelans wanted a win to progress to the playoff stage. The Peruvians began the event being hammered by Brazil 4-0, however recovered after a 2-1 win over Colombia. The two-2 draw in opposition to Ecuador had already put the crew near securing its knockout stage place.
“Peru was overcoming itself as matches went on. We performed in opposition to very intense groups and had little time to get better,” coach Ricardo Gareca stated. “To impose ourselves in opposition to totally different adversities and handle to get a spot pretty speaks clearly in regards to the fortitude (of) this nationwide crew.”
Group B ended with Brazil on 10 factors, adopted by Peru (7), Colombia (4), Ecuador (3) and Venezuela (2). The highest 4 in every group advance. Argentina leads Group A, which will probably be selected Monday.
Lionel Messi’s crew might solely lose prime spot if it fails to beat already-eliminated Bolivia and Paraguay wins in opposition to Uruguay.
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