There was competitive action across Europe this weekend which is where we start and an action-packed game in Portugal.
Oscar Cardozo saved his teammate’s blushes with a penalty to earn Benfica a point against Braga in a 2-2 draw, earlier Lorenzo Melgarejo a striker converted to left-back had scored a headed own goal as he misjudged a cross.
In Spain Nelson Haedo made his Valencia debut, coming off the bench in the credible draw against Real Madrid in the Bernabeu. Antolín Alcaraz (Wigan Athletic) played the whole game in a 2-0 defeat. In Russia the Krylya Sovetov pair, Pablo Zeballos and Luis Caballero were sunk by the same margin, things were even worse for the Paraguayan pair as the latter was sent off after 39 minutes having reacted badly to a foul. Cristian Riveros (Kayserispor) was also defeated 1-0 this weekend.
Better news outside of Europe when José Ortigoza (Shandong) turned Ortigol in China with a consolation goal in a 4-2 loss.
Also a couple of goals for our players down south, while Claudio Morel was sent off in Avellenada derby which Independiente lost, there was happier news for ex-Racing defender Marcos Cáceres who can be seen scoring below for Newell’s Old Boys in their 2-0 victory.
Víctor Ayala also scored his first goal in Argentina, a smashing effort to seal Lanús’ 2-0 win over Vélez.
It was the late late show for the Paraguayans this weekend. Osvaldo Martinez scored a penalty six minutes from time for Atlante in their 1-1 draw with his former club Monterrey.
Edgar ‘Pajaro’ Benítez left it until the 91st minute to score Toluca’s winner against Pachuca having come off the bench in the second half. Paulo Da Silva played the whole game for the losing side.
Elsewhere Dario Verón (PUMAS) was involved in a 2-1 away win and Pablo Aguilar (Tijuana) saw his side win by the same scoreline at home.
By Ralph Hannah