Universidad de Chile wins Copa Sudamericana final
SANTIAGO, Chile (AP)
Universidad de Chile won its first continental competition Wednesday with a 3-0 victory over Ecuador's Liga de Quito in the second leg of the Copa Sudamericana final.
Striker Eduardo Vargas scored two goals and Gustavo Lorenzetti found the other to give Universidad a 4-0 aggregate win after Vargas got the only goal in Thursday's first leg.
Vargas finished the tournament as top scorer with 11 goals.
''The sensation is unforgettable and in time it's going to have an even bigger impact. To be part of history does not have a price,'' Universidad coach Jorge Luis Sampaoli said.
Universidad de Chile took an early lead in just the third minute after a right-wing cross was cleared by a defender into the path of Vargas, who beat the goalkeeper with a left-footed shot from just inside the area.
Sharp passing opened up the Liga de Quito defense late in the second half, leaving Lorenzetti just a tap in Universidad's second goal in the 79th minute.
Universidad was reduced to 10 men in the 84th minute when Matias Rodriguez was sent off for a late tackle, but Vargas put the win beyond doubt three minutes later when he evaded two defenders and lofted the ball over the keeper and into the net.
''He's an extraordinary player and he deserves what he is living,'' Universidad's Diego Rivarola said of Vargas. ''He's got a great future, I hope he does well. After this, he'll surely leave.''
The Copa Sudamericana is South America's second most important continental club competition after the Copa Libertadores, which begins in February.
Universidad de Chile is Chile's second most successful team in terms of titles, the current league champion and a semifinalist in the present Clausura 2011 tournament, after going through the regular season unbeaten.
Liga de Quito won the Copa Sudamericana in 2009 and the Copa Libertadores in 2008.
Rodriguez had a good chance for Universidad in the 14th minute, but his header sailed over the bar.
Liga de Quito's first dangerous effort came in the 45th minute when Ezequiel Gonzalez curled in a low free kick from 25 yards (meters), forcing keeper Johnny Herrera to dive low to his right.
Gustavo Canales almost scored for Universidad in the 51st, but he put his shot wide from close range.
''We never said it, but we knew we were playing good football, distinct from the others because we never went back on our priority of attacking, of looking for goals,'' Canales said. ''We were cautious during the whole tournament, but now we can say that we were the best and that's why we're lifting the cup.''
Liga de Quito was also reduced to 10 men when Jorge Guagua was shown a red card in the 68th minute for elbowing a Universidad de Chile player in the face while jumping for a header.
In the first leg, Vargas scored in the 44th, rounding the keeper and slotting the ball into an empty net after being put through on goal.