Fri, Jul 16, 2004 - Page 23 News List

Brazil upset by Paraguay

COPA AMERICA Brazil's defeat sent it from Peru's deep south to the far north for a weekend quarterfinal against Mexico. Costa Rica advanced after a 2-1 win over Chile

AP , AREQUIPA, PERU

Chilean fans arrive at the stadium prior to the game against Costa Rica during the Copa America in Tacna, Peru, Wednesday.

PHOTO: REUTERS

Paraguay ended Brazil's 13-game unbeaten streak 2-1 and Costa Rica overcame Chile 2-1 deep in injury time to grab the last quarterfinal berth at the Copa America on Wednesday.

Brazil's defeat sent it from Peru's deep south to the far north for a weekend quarterfinal against Mexico, the previous team to beat Brazil -- effectively its under-23 side -- in the Gold Cup final in July last year.

Paraguay won Group C and will meet Uruguay, which ended up being the best third-placed team.

"I'm very proud, we beat a first-class team," Paraguay coach Carlos Jara Saguier said. "Now comes the hard part, but we intend to bring the Copa home."

Costa Rica advanced as the second-best third-place team and into a playoff against defending champion Colombia. Andy Herron's goal three minutes into second-half injury time at Tacna eliminated Chile and Bolivia, the Group A side which would have qualified if the score had remained 1-1.

Peru and Argentina meet in the other quarterfinal.

Paraguay striker Fredy Bareiro ended a 1-1 deadlock with Brazil in the 71st minute, beating defender Luisao and shooting past Brazil goalkeeper Julio Cesar.

"This loss should be a warning to us," Brazil coach Carlos Alberto Parreira said. "In the playoffs we won't be able to make these mistakes.

"Luckily, this loss doesn't set us back in our plans to reach the final. It came in a good moment."

Striker Julio Gonzalez put Paraguay ahead with a header off a corner in the 29th, and Luis Fabiano equalized with a hard right-footer from inside the box in the 35th. He chested the ball away from a defender before shooting high into the net, giving no chance to Paraguay 'keeper Diego Barreto.

"Unfortunately we let this one slip by," Fabiano said. "Now we need to correct our mistakes and get ready to face Mexico."

Paraguay played a man short from the 74th as defender Emilio Martinez was sent off for a foul on Brazil defender Gustavo Nery.

It was Paraguay's first Copa America win against Brazil since 1979 in Paraguay. The two-time Copa champions had lost five in a row. Overall, Paraguay has won 10 of 74 matches against Brazil, losing 47 and drawing 17.

Brazil's loss came on the 30th anniversary of coach Parreira's first career start as a head coach, and ensured no team finished the Copa's group phase with a perfect 3-0 record.

And with 55 goals from 18 group games at more than 3 per game, the Copa was on track for the highest average output since the 1975 event.

Just when a thriller at Tacna appeared set to end in a draw, Herron came out of seemingly nowhere and blasted the game-winner from the right past Chile 'keeper Alex Varas.

Chile captain Rafael Olarra had shouldered the ball into the goal in the 40th, and Mauricio Wright tapped in for the tying score in the 59th.

"Chile controlled the game in the first half, but we were the ones who were able to define the game," said Costa Rica coach Jorge Luis Pinto. "We had a demolishing counterattack."

Chile will surely depart the Copa crestfallen, having conceded late goals in all three of its group matches. It lost to Brazil 1-0 in the last minute, yielded a late 1-1 equalizer to Paraguay, and watched Herron drive a dagger shot into its goal and hearts, despite knowing a draw would knock them out.

"Our biggest problem was that we failed to close out games," said Chile coach Juvenal Olmos.

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