Copa Santander Liberatdores Roundup, Apr. 28
Adriano scored a second-half penalty to give 10-man Flamengo a 1-0
home win over a Corinthians side boasting World Cup winners Ronaldo
and Roberto Carlos as Brazil's two most popular clubs clashed in
the Copa Libertadores last-16 on Wednesday.
In the day's other first-leg games, Brazil's Sao Paulo finished with 10 men but still secured a 0-0 draw at Universitario of Peru, while Banfield of Argentina had a 3-1 home win against Internacional, also of Brazil.
Adriano side-footed a 65th-minute penalty past Corinthians goalkeeper Julio Cesar for the sole goal, after Moacir tripped Juan in the box.
Michael was sent off for Flamengo in the 38th minute after receiving a second yellow card.
The match was played in torrential rain in the Maracana stadium. Ronaldo in particular seemed to struggle with the conditions and was substituted in with just under 10 minutes to play.
Flamengo, based in Rio de Janeiro, is Brazil's best-supported club, closely followed in second place by Corinthians, from Sao Paulo.
Brazil internationals Adriano and Vagner Love lead Flamengo's attack, while Corinthians has signed veteran World Cup winners Roberto Carlos and Ronaldo in a bid to win the Libertadores for the first time in its 100-year history.
The return leg will be played in Sao Paulo on Wednesday, May 5. The eventual winner of the tie will be among the favorites to lift the trophy in August after the competition takes a break for the World Cup.
Meanwhile, James Rodriguez opened the scoring for Banfield against Internacional just after half time.
Kleber equalized for Internacional in the 51st minute but then spoiled his night by getting a red card five minutes later.
Roberto Battion reestablished Banfield's lead in the 59th minute and Sebastian Fernandez gave the Argentine club a two-goal advantage ahead of the return leg in Brazil next Thursday (May 6), stabbing in from close range following a corner in the 81st.
Banfield was also reduced to 10 men when Julio Barraza was sent off in the 84th minute.
In the day's earlier match, Richarlyson was sent off for Sao Paulo in the 65th minute but the Brazilian club kept Universitario at bay and will be favorite to progress at home in the return leg next Tuesday, May 4.
In a match of few clear-cut chances, Cicinho hit the post for Sao Paulo in the first half, while Rainer Torres had the best opening for Universitario when his shot on the turn was blocked by defender Miranda in the 73rd minute.
First leg ties in the knockout round of 16 continue on Thursday with Cruzeiro vs. Nacional, Alianza Lima vs. Universidad de Chile, and Once Caldas vs. Libertad.
On Tuesday, defending champion Estudiantes won 1-0 at San Luis, while Guadalajara had a 1-0 home win against Velez Sarsfield.
The Copa Libertadores is the top club competition in Latin America, equivalent to the Champions' League in Europe.