Friday, 13 October 2017

Silly Chile

Sometimes it's best to just keep quiet.

While most of the interest in the South American World Cup Qualifying campaign focused on Argentina, there's an interesting back-story surrounding Peru, Chile and Bolivia. 

Back in September of 2016, Bolivia hosted Peru and won 2:0, and five days later, travelled to Chile and drew 0:0. 

Chile then filed a complaint about Bolivia's Nelson Cabrera, which was subsequently upheld. Since Cabrera had also played in the earlier game against Peru, the two results were scratched and Peru and Chile were both awarded 3:0 wins. 

At the time, Peru were struggling with four points from the first six games, while Chile were soaring with 10 points. 

A little over a year later, and that additional three points for Peru proved crucial. 

Both Chile and Peru finished on 26 points, with Peru having the better goal difference, and in the play-off (v New Zealand) spot. 

Chile finished sixth and the reigning Copa America champions and Confederations Cup runners-up were out, despite beating Peru twice. 

To add salt into Chile's wounds, Peru's late equaliser against Colombia was a direct free kick touched by goalkeeper David Ospina on the way in for an own goal, (he should have let it go in), and after that the Peruvian and Colombian players could be seen talking with each other. Probably not a long-shot to suggest the Chile score (losing 0:2 at Brazil) was the topic of conversation, and that the 1:1 score suited both Colombia (through automatically) as well as Peru. 

The game finished 1:1.    

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