The first exciting moment was not late in coming at the Monumental stadium: after a rebound in the area, a player went it with his studs showing, kicked Nicolás De La Cruz when he was about to shoot and, through VAR, the referee Víctor Carrillo punished the foul accordingly. awarding a penalty. Nacho Fernández took charge of it, as against Racing, and scored a crossed left-footed shot setting the score 1-0.
Everything that happened afterwards was dominated by River, which deserved to finish the first half with an even greater advantage. Matías Suárez had a clear one-on-one, after an assist by Rafael Borré, but Juan Pablo Carrizo prevented the celebration. Then, the Colombian forward tried from outside the area with a right-footed shot that passed near one of the opposing goal’s angles.
El Millionario didn’t slack off in the attack and continued creating goal opportunities, such as a deflected shot by Borré, who couldn’t get comfortable in the area. Then, Suárez shot from the outside, near Carrizo’s right goalpost. Cerro Porteño’s only threat was a deflected header by Joaquín Larrivey and one of River’s clearest opportunities was when Gonzalo Montiel reached the opposing area, but was taken aback when the ball remained close to his foot and he couldn’t shoot accurately.
At the beginning of the second half, Cerro Porteño defended with a deep backline and made it difficult for River to keep up the rhythm of the first half. However, el Millionario got to their area by means of a shot by Milton Casco which was blocked by a defender, after a pass from De La Cruz. The opposing team responded with a clear header by Nelson Haedo Valdez which deviated.
After a good run on the left, Suárez passed the ball to Nacho Fernández, who scored the second goal, which the referee disallowed after the Var showed a handball by River’s forward. However, a few minutes later, Casco set up Palacios for a goal, Carrizo fouled him, and Borré perfectly executed a penalty kick, celebrating the second goal.
The second leg will take place next Thursday in Paraguay. In the meantime, on Sunday, Gallardo’s team will host Talleres from Cordoba for the Superleague.