Second-half surge ends Peru's losing streak vs. Chile

Second-half surge ends Peru's losing streak vs. Chile

International Soccer

Second-half surge ends Peru's losing streak vs. Chile


MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — For the first time in five years, Peru found a way to beat arch-rival Chile. It was in lopsided fashion, too.

A second-half surge that included a brace from substitute Pedro Aquino saw Peru score all of its goals in a 3-0 victory over Chile at Hard Rock Stadium. The decisive tally in the latest edition of El Clasico del Pacifico came off an own goal from Enzo Roco shortly after the hour mark, but Aquino put the game out of reach after coming off the bench in the 74th minute.

The win in the friendly played in front of 34,016 fans was Peru’s first over Chile in five games. The Peruvians had not beaten their nemesis since March 22, 2013, and had lost each of the four previous encounters.

Peru was on the front-foot for much of the match, but it took until the 64th minute for Ricardo Gareca’s side to find a winner. Andre Carrillo whipped in a dangerous cross on the play that floated close in front of the goal, and Roco’s ensuing attempt to clear it resulted in the ball being directed backwards into his own net.

The lead was doubled 11 minutes later and one minute after Aquino entered the game. The midfielder got on the end of a pass from Edison Flores and fired a one-timed finish past Chile goalkeeper Fernando De Paul, who got a piece of the ball but could not keep it out.

Aquino struck again four minutes from time to send the elated pro-Peru crowd into a frenzy. He again received a pass from out wide, this time from Andy Polo, and sidestepped a defender with a fake shot before blasting the ball into the net.

There were chances in the first half for both sides, but Chile did not have many clear-cut looks. The closest the Chileans came to scoring was a minute before halftime when a rebounded shot from Guillermo Maripan was cleared off the line by Luis Advincula.

Raul Ruidiaz also had a pair of opportunities to open the scoring in the opening stanza, but De Paul raced off his line to close down the angle on a through ball played into the box on one occasion and Roco denied Ruidiaz with a goal-line clearance on the other.

Anderson Santamaria also came close for Peru with a header in the first half, but De Paul reacted well and made an impressive save to push it wide.

Peru next plays the U.S. Men’s National Team on Tuesday night at Pratt & Whitney Stadium in East Hartford, Connecticut. Chile, meanwhile, takes on Mexico.

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