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June 20, 2019

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Peru has one foot in Copa last 8

Captain Paolo Guerrero and forward Jefferson Farfan each scored one and created another as Peru took a huge step toward qualifying for the Copa America quarterfinal with a 3-1 Group A victory over Bolivia on Tuesday.

Bolivia took the lead from the penalty spot when Marcelo Moreno sent goalkeeper Pedro Gallese the wrong way from 12 yards. But Guerrero equalized before half-time and Farfan gave Peru a deserved lead before Edison Flores put the seal on Peru’s victory in stoppage time at Rio de Janeiro’s iconic Maracana stadium.

“The most important thing is that the team gave everything. We were hesitant at the beginning and without doing much, Bolivia had a penalty,” said Guerrero. “That annoyed us a lot and we lost our serenity, but thanks to God I managed to score and that calmed us down.”

Bolivia faces a must-win clash with Venezuela in their final game to stand any hope of reaching the quarterfinal.

“We have to go and play for it against Venezuela,” said Bolivia coach Eduardo Villegas. “With the same ingredients that we approached this match: Aggression, the desire to attack our opponents’ goal, a high press — we’ll try to win the game.”

Brazil was held to a 0-0 draw against Venezuela in the Copa America on Tuesday after a dramatic finale which saw a Philippe Coutinho strike in the 87th minute ruled out by VAR.

Chilean referee Julio Bascunan ruled out a Brazilian goal after being alerted to an infringement by the video assistant referee.

The goal appeared to have been disallowed due to a touch by Liverpool striker Roberto Firmino, although it was not clear that Firmino had been offside as the ball grazed him on the way into the net.

Brazil left the field to boos but remains top of Group A with four points from two games, and one game to play.

Brazil coach Tite meanwhile had no issues with the two VAR-assisted decisions that ruled out his side’s goals.

“They made the right call with both goals,” Tite said. “VAR was correct. I have absolutely nothing to demand — we got justice.”


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