In a very controversial match, Peru eliminated Brazil from Copa América. La Canarinha, that only needed a draw to advance to quarterfinals, dominated the game from the beginning to the end, but Peruvian goalkeeper, Pedro Gallese, performed a wall-like defense, and not even air could enter his arch. However, a game that had the potential to be one of the best in the Centenario of Copa América was stained by the weak labor of the referee.

The Gillette Stadium was the scenario where Brazil, that boasts the 7th spot at FIFA’s world rank, faced the selection of Peru ranked 46th. After Ecuador had crushed Haiti 4 – 0 advancing to quarterfinals, the game between La Canarinha and Peru’s eleven was transformed into a match to the death. However, the Brazilian team had the advantage. If the match had ended in a draw, Peru would have been eliminated because of the goal difference. But soccer is more than points, and La Selecao left it all on the field. Most of the game was played at Peru’s half as they were defending themselves from the Brazilian attack, but there was a wall made of solid brick blocking the Peruvian arch.

In a very controversial match, Peru eliminated Brazil from Copa América. Photo credit: AP / The Indian Express
In a very controversial match, Peru eliminated Brazil from Copa América. Photo credit: AP / The Indian Express

His name is Pedro Gallese, and he is the goalkeeper that over and over again blocked every single attempt to score by La Canarinha, which earned him the most deserved man of the match title of the whole tournament. Even though the defense of his team gave some openings, no surprise since they were defending themselves from one of the best offensive of the world, Gallese managed to keep the Brazilian team from scoring.

The worst refereeing g that Copa América has seen so far

In an otherwise perfect soccer game where two teams did what they considered best to earn a victory, the labor of referee Andres Cunha, from Uruguay, and his team stained one of the best games of the Copa. The irregularities were particularly evident in the rectangle called “the danger zone.” It was here where the referees turned a blind eye to what was happening. In the first half of the match Christian Cueva, forward for Peru, tackled Dani Alves throwing him out of the field, but the fault was ignored. Then, Lucas Lima managed to intercept a bad service inside the area, and he was kicked in a strong entry which was also ignored. Lastly, the infamous goal. Raúl Ruidiaz received an excellent pass in front of the archery with no goalkeeper, but he was not well positioned, so he used his hand to score. The heat of the moment can make a player move his body by instinct, but that is why referees are paid their salary.

In spite of that, it is important to note that Peru’s Eleven did a great job against the Canarinha, especially its defense. They managed to snatch the pass to quarterfinals from the Brazilian selection, and Group B is already defined with Ecuador and Peru in the first and second place, respectively.

Tomorrow is Venezuela will face Mexico in what some call the game of the substitutes because they already classified, and the game is going to decide who ends at the number one spot. In the second match, Uruguay will seek redemption against Jamaica in one of the worst performances by La Celeste in a Copa América.

But on Tuesday, Chile and Panama will meet at the Lincoln Financial Field to decide which of them advances to quarterfinals. This game will define Group D, and in the second match, Argentina will probably use the game against Jamaica to let its stars rest before the next phase of the tournament beings. The break is going to be short, and The United States will play against Ecuador at the CenturyLink Field in Seattle on June 16. This will be the first game of the elimination round.

Source: Copa America Centenario