After an uneventful group stage, Flamengo is taking a closer look at the Round of 16. The defending Copa Libertadores champions beat Racing de Avellaneda 2-1 on Thursday to move into second place in Group A after the last date of play.
A goal by Victor Hugo on minute 83 with a cross shot inside the area gave the “Mengao” three points in an identical duel held in front of approximately 64,000 spectators at Rio de Janeiro’s Maracana Stadium.
Despite the defeat, Racing continues as the group leader with 10 points, while Flamengo was left with eight, three more than Ñublense, and needed to add against eliminated Aucas to advance to the next round.
With more efficiency in finishing than good play, Rio’s team made two of their three shots on goal to inch closer to qualifying. On 35, winger Wesley Franca opened the scoring after completing a counterattack headed by Everton Ribeiro and Gerson.
Although Racing arrived in Brazil with guaranteed qualification, they did not lose their composure in the match and responded after 49 minutes with a superb goal from Matias Rojas, who temporarily equalized with a first-rate shot from the corner.
A late goal from Flamengo allowed them to extend their streak to nine games without a loss. Apart from this, he equaled a record by scoring 25th. Consecutive play in the Libertadores, as América de México did between 1999 and 2002.
In a duel of the qualified teams, Olimpia defeated Atlético Nacional 3–0 and took first place in Group H.
“Dean” opened the scoring for Asuncion in the 19th minute on a tactical play which Mateo Gamarra finished with a header.
In the second half, Guillermo Paiva and Diego Torres certified the win for Olimpia, which maintained its unbeaten record and reached 11 points, one point ahead of Atlético Nacional.
With Emerson Batalha’s only goal, Independiente Medellin beat Metropolitanos 1–0 in Caracas and went top of Group B.
After a goalless first half and with few goal options, the Colombians woke up early in the second period with an individual action by Batalha that culminated with a low left footed shot.
Medellín earned its third consecutive win in the regional tournament, aided by a good performance from goalkeeper Andres Mosquera, who made six saves.
The “Mightys” finished top with 10 points, one more than Internacional, who they would see on the decisive date. Nacional, with eight units, will seek qualification at home against the eliminated Metropolitans.
Before the final day of the group stage, which will be played between 27 and 29 June, nine teams are classified for the round of 16: Argentine Racing de Avellaneda, Argentino Juniors and Boca Juniors; the Brazilians Palmeiras and Athletico Paranaense; In addition to Bolivar (Bolivia), Independiente del Valle (Ecuador), Olimpia (Paraguay) and Atlético Nacional (Colombia).