Monday, November 20, 2006


Chilean Squad Does Well In S.American Championship
Plays well against Brazil

During the final round of matches in the South American U-20 tournament being hosted by Paraguay, the Chilean national team faced its toughest challenge against Brazil , that has been several times World champions in this category. This tournament is being organized by the Conmebol, the continental football federation and is very important since the first two teams will qualify to play in the 2008 Beijing Olympics while the first four teams will take part in the forthcoming U-20 World Cup to be held in Canada in June 2007.
The game was played on Jan 22 at the Feliciano Caceres Stadium in Luque, in front of approximately 12,000 fans. It was the second of a three match meeting that did not start off very well for the local team since Paraguay went down to Argentina by 1-0. The fans were soon supporting Chile that completely outplayed Brazil in the first half but were unable to score the crucial first goal. In the second half Chile suffered a heavy blow as Nicholas Larrondo , one of its best defenders was sent off in the 58th due to a late tackle on a Brazilian player. Larrondo´s absence left a gap in the Chilean defense that was soon capitalized by Brazil that scored ten minutes later with a header by Alexandre Pato, a striker that plays for S.American club champions Internacional. Tempers were rising as some minutes later a Brazilian attempted to deceive the referee by scoring a Maradona style goal with his hand. A scuffle began between players from both teams and ended with each team having a man sent off. However the Chileans showed great fighting spirit and continued advancing towards the Brazilian area. This paid off in the 85th minute as Nicholas Medina was fouled in the area and the penalty was scored by Arturo Vidal. The Chilean players were still celebrating when Brazil scored a minute later as Tcho fired in a loose ball in the area. It seemed that all was lost for Chile with only three minutes remaining but the team counterattacked and this caused a Brazilian defender to commit another foul in his own area. It was the 95th minute of play but the referee allowed Arturo Vidal to take the penalty and equalize for Chile. The Brazilian players could not believe what had happened and swarmed around the referee to complain and ended up pushing him onto the ground. The riot police entered the pitch immediately and controlled the Brazilian players, but this will bring serious consequences since it seems that those players that assaulted the referee will be suspended for several matches by the Conmebol.
Since Chile won its first match against Colombia by 5-0 it only needs two more points to qualify for the Canada World Cup. Chile is now the highest scoring team of the championship with 15 goals and its next match will be against Argentina on Jan 23.
On that same day Brazil will face Uruguay and Paraguay will play Colombia.

The points table is as follows :

1) Uruguay : 6 points
2) Chile and Argentina : 4 points
3) Brazil: 2 points
4) Paraguay and Colombia : 0 points

5 Dead, 40 wounded in Football Match in Colombia
Lightning Strikes during amateur championship match

El Tiempo, a local newspaper, reported that on Nov. 19 in Llano del Poso, a small town in the northeastern region of Colombia, a lightning ray struck a plastic tent under which some 60 people had taken shelter from the rain. Surprise tropical rainstorms are common in this region of the country that is in a jungle area near the border with Venezuela. The police reported that 40 people were injured , 8 in critical condition, including 4 children.
The freak occurrence occurred at 3:30 local time as two amateur teams from nearby villages faced each other.
Dr. Juan Carlos Casas, of the local hospital declared that most of the wounded had skin burns of different degrees of seriousness.
“When the lightning ray hit us everything shook and we felt as if the ground was sinking under our feet,” said Carlos Perez, a peasant that survived the incredible accident caused by nature.

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