Weekly Round-Up: All 3 CONMEBOL Sudamericana Round of 16 Ties Finely Poised Heading Into Return Legs

Following a break for the 2019 Copa America, action in the CONMEBOL Sudamericana returned this week with a trio of Round of 16 first legs.

A pair of visitors, La Equidad and Argentinos Juniors,  picked up one goal wins, while the other match, between Caracas and Independiente del Valle finished scoreless. Heading into next week’s return legs, all three ties hang in the balance, with spots in the quarterfinals on the line. 

In Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Rodrigo Vargas put the hosts on top early, finding the back of the net with just 6 minutes played. That result held for over an hour, but Ethan González equalized for the visitors with 80 minutes played. The 1-1 scoreline then set up a frenetic finish, with La Equidad first missing a penalty. González then scored to make it 2-1 just on the end of the 90 minutes. Royal Pari believed they’d found an equalizer in stoppage time, but John Jairo Mosquera’s goal was ruled out for offside.

La Equidad will favor themselves back in Bogotá, but Royal Pari showed themselves to be a dangerous side yet capable of qualifying for the quarterfinals. 

In Caracas on Wednesday afternoon, the hosts and Independiente del Valle played out a scoreless draw that leaves things finely poised for next week’s return leg in Quito. Caracas’ Robert Hernández took home Man of the Match honors, and also delighted the crowd with a wonderful bit of skill. 

The week’s final match was an all-Argentine affair as Colón hosted Argentinos Juniors in Santa Fe. After a quick start from both sides, it was Argentinos that took the lead with Matiás Romero finishing off a well-worked team move with an impressive strike. 

Colón had chances to equalize during the second half, but in the end it is Argentinos Juniors that take the advantage into next week’s second leg in Buenos Aires.

All three ties sit finely poised ahead of next week’s action, which will determine the first trio of teams to qualify for the quarterfinals.

CONMEBOL Sudamericana, Round of 16 Second Legs:

La Equidad - Royal Pari: July 16, Bogotá

Independiente del Valle - Caracas: July 17, Quito

Argentinos Juniors - Colón: July 18, Buenos Aires