With three games to go it is a three-horse race for the championship as Guaraní lead Libertad and Nacional by one point. The former two have fairly easy run ins having seen off Olimpia and Cerro Porteño respectively this weekend, Nacional await Cerro in the penultimate week.
Guaraní vs Olimpia
Defensores del Chaco
(1-1) 2-1 – Diego Centurión, Dante López; Fredy Bareiro
Guarani showed their fortitude to come back from a goal down and win, the sixth time they’ve done so in 2012 (only Libertad have a better record, winning 7). While Olimpia’s goal was fortunate, Pablo Aurrecochea fumbling the ball to allow Fredy Bareiro to head in, they will feel aggreived at not being awarded a penalty for a clear foul.
Guaraní for their part relied on the dynamic duo of Diego and Dante, Centurión scoring the first goal after a corner was brought down well by López who found his strike partner in the six yard box. It was Dante López who scored the winner, good work by Dario Ocampo who beat his man and although he went for the one-two, López decided to shoot from distance and it took a slight deflection of his teammate who had continued his run to beat Martin Silva.
Libertad vs Cerro Porteño
Defensores del Chaco
(1-0) 1-0 – Pablo Velázquez
Unlike Saturday’s match the other big game in Sajonia was won by the team in black and white, Libertad with a solid defensive display to shut out their freescoring rivals in blue and red. Pablo Velázquez got the only goal of the game anticipating Nelson Romero’s cross from the right to get in front of Cerro’s dithering defenders and poke the ball past Barreto.
The encounter had plenty of controversy – Jorge Rojas was convinced he was fouled in the area but Cerro Porteño weren’t given a penalty, later on Fidencio Oviedo saw red for what replays indicate was a forearm smash to the back of his rival’s head. In stoppage time Carlos Amarilla and his assistant combined to produce a veritable howler that could cost Libertad dear. Pablo Velázquez was onside as he took one touch to control a through ball before scoring – the linesman flagged him offside and then the icing on the cake he was shown a second yellow by Amarilla for ‘kicking the ball away’ (i.e. scoring). Reminiscent of the crazy decision that went against Arsenal and Robin Van Persie against Barcelona.
Nacional vs Carapeguá
(0-0) 2-0 – Javier Gonzalez, Carlos Ruiz Peralta
The other title challengers had won earlier in the day by notching up their fourth consecutive win at the Arsenio Erico and seventh home victory in their previous eight mathces. For the most part Carapeguá had plenty of chances but in the final 17 minutes Nacional wrapped up the victory having bombarded their opponents with crosses.
Javier Gonzalez profited from a cross from the left, brought down by Rodrigo Teixeira and while Carapeguá’s goalkeeper denied him the ball trickled into the path of the 32-year-old who smashed home. Carlos Ruiz Peralta headed in a centre from the right to seal the win.
Other results: Tacuary 2-1 Sol de América; Cerro de Franco 1-1 Independiente; Luque 2-0 Rubio Ñu