Colombia's Liga Postobon moves into its second round of fixtures with Pasto and Deportivo Cali leading the way in Group A, while Sante Fe and and Itagui are level at the top of Group B. The final day qualifiers, Chico and Huila, have so far struggled as the completion moves towards its climax and semi-finalists are decided.
Deportivo Cali built upon a solid start to the second round, with an excellent victory at home against Atletico Huila. Cristian Nazarit gave Deportivo the perfect start, stooping to header the home side ahead on the 4th minute. Cali doubled the lead just after the half-time break as full back Jefferson Murillo's deep cross looped over the goalkeeper and deflected off the far post. The ball broke to Uruguayan striker Gustavo Biscayzacu, who supplied the simplest of finishes. Huila worked hard to get back into the game, and they pulled one back on the 71st minute.
Panamanian midfielder Alejandro Velez stepped off the bench sporting the number 300 shirt, a blonde Balotelli-esque mohawk and teed himself up for a shot at goal from a 40 yard free-kick. Señor Velez clearly doesn't lack confidence, and the 23 year old's audacious attempt spun out of the reach of the goalkeeper and into the far corner. Deportivo Cali held firm and they will hope to continue their good start at home against Tolima in their next fixture.
Elsewhere in the group, Pasto snatched an superb 3 points as they travelled to face Deportes Tolima. Tolima began the second second group stage with a good win over Huila, but they failed to make their chances pay against Pasto and were punished. The decisive goal came 3 minutes into the second half, as Danobis Banguero fouled Edwards Jimenez inside the box. Victor Manuel Zapata Mera stepped up for the penalty kick and his rather tentative penalty kick had enough power to beat Jose Cuadrado in the Pasto goal.
4 - Deportivo Cali
4 - Deportivo Pasto
3 - Deportes Tolima
0 - Atletico Huila
Itagui will be delighted to have picked up a good win away to Boyaca Chico on Sunday. David Cordoba swept the loose ball into the top corner on 25 minutes, after finding himself unmarked in the penalty area. Itagui were reduced to 10 men on the 55th minute, and when Chico were certain the had won a penalty deep into the second half. The Itagui defender clearly punched a cross up into the air, the referee blew his whistle and awarded the visitors a free-kick for a non-existent push. Good fortune aside, Itagui have been very impressive this season and a win in the next game against Santa Fe will go a long way to securing qualification.
Santa Fe and La Equidad shared the points, in an end-to-end 2-2 draw on Sunday. La Equidad opened the scoring on the 49th minute as Leudo slid the ball into the net, following a slip by Vargas in the Santa Fe goal. The visitors pulled level against their Bogota rivals on the 52nd minute, as an excellent sweeping cross from deep was perfectly cushioned into the path of Cabrera, who headed into an empty net.
Three minutes later 'the insurers' struck back to regain the lead. Hinestroza picked up a sliced cross, shifted the ball onto his left foot and struck a perfectly placed effort across the goalkeeper into the bottom corner. La Equidad seemed to settle into the game, but 10 minutes later a lapse in concentration allowed Cabrera to latch onto a long throw ball and touch it round the onrushing goalkeeper to draw Santa Fe level. La Equidad will now have to pick up points away from home if they are to qualify from group B.
4 - Santa Fe
4 - Itagui
2 - La Equidad
0 - Boyaca Chico