Things are coming to a head nicely in the group phase of the Copa Libertadores with another nine games taking place the length and breadth of the continent this week. The battle for the top two spots in Group 3 reached boiling point when Colo Colo downed holders Boca Juniors in Santiago, while Fluminense and Flamengo showed they could handle the pressure by winning their respective encounters.
To find out what happened to fellow heavyweights Cruzeiro, Sao Paulo and Estudiantes, scroll down as FIFA.com rounds up the latest events in South America's blue riband club competition.
Game of the week
Colo Colo 2-0 Boca Juniors
Goals: Cristobal Jorquera 3, Gustavo Biscayzacu 34
The Chileans showed their ability to rise to the occasion when they entertained the Buenos Aires giants in a high-stakes clash on Thursday evening. Lethal in the first half, El Cacique held onto their hard-earned advantage in the second to hand the defending champions their first competitive defeat of 2008. Claudio Borghi's men could even afford the luxury of a missed penalty, while Los Xeneizes suffered injuries to Juan Roman Riquelme and Sebastian Battaglia, both key men in their charge to Copa glory last year.
Surprise of the week
San Jose 2-1 Santos
Goals: David Cerutti 11, Gerson Garcia 61 (San Jose); Kleber Pereira 7 (Santos FC)
The celebrations went on long into the night in Oruro as San Jose finally broke their duck against Brazilian opposition in the Copa. After three defeats and a draw in previous meetings with Auriverde adversaries, the Bolivians hit the jackpot against Santos. Despite conceding an early goal, Marco Ferrufino's men kept their heads to engineer a comeback that puts them back into contention in Group 6.
Another side who made the most of their opportunities this week were Estudiantes, who registered a 2-0 win at home to Danubio thanks to goals from Juan Sebastian Veron and Leandro Desabato. With Deportivo Cuenca and Lanus playing out a 1-1 draw in Ecuador, the three points saw El Pincha manoeuvre themselves into first place in Group 2. Now marooned at the bottom of the section, the Uruguayans saw their hopes for this year all but disappear with this defeat.
Although Santos stumbled on their travels, Brazil's other four representatives all fared much better this week. On Wednesday Fluminense recorded a fine 2-1 win away to Libertad to move ahead of LDU Quito at the top of Group 8 on goal difference. Washington grabbed both goals for the Rio outfit, who look well set to check into the knockout rounds.
But it was a case of anything Flu can do, Fla can do better as cross-town rivals Flamengo avenged their recent 3-0 reverse away to Nacional with a 2-0 victory at the Maracana. Marcinho was the man at the double as Joel Santana's side overtook the Uruguayans and Cienciano to slip into the driving seat in Group 4. The third-placed Peruvians do have a game in hand, however.
While compatriots Cruzeiro were held to a 1-1 draw at Caracas, the point was still enough for them to stay out front in Group 1. After Juan Valencia had put the hosts ahead, Marcelo Moreno earned a share of the spoils for the visitors from the penalty spot. With five goals now to his name, the Bolivian stands joint top of the 2008 Copa scoring charts alongside strike partner Ramires.
Sao Paulo also drew on their travels but were cursing their luck after conceding a last-minute goal away to Sportivo Luqueno. Jose Aloisio Da Silva's strike seemed to have done the job for the 2005 champions but Adrian Duarte had other ideas, his late show keeping the Paraguayans in the hunt in Group 7. The Paulistas still lead the way although the group is wide open following Audax Italiano's 1-0 defeat of Atletico Nacional, with only two points now separating the Brazilians and the bottom-placed Chileans.
66: The anniversary that San Jose celebrated on 19 March, the same day that the Bolivians beat Santos. Birthday presents don't come much better than that.
What they said
"It was a tough game up to the penalty but after that we showed we deserved to win and we could have even got a goal or two more. We've been suffering, that's true, but the team has kept its poise and now it's back in our hands," Estudiantes coach Roberto Sensini expresses his satisfaction after victory over Danubio.
This week's results:
Caracas (VEN) 1-1 Cruzeiro (BRA)
Estudiantes (ARG) 2-0 Danubio (URU)
Audax Italiano (CHI) 1-0 Atletico Nacional (COL)
Flamengo (BRA) 2-0 Nacional (URU)
San Jose (BOL) 2-1 Santos FC (BRA)
Libertad (PAR) 1-2 Fluminense (BRA)
Deportivo Cuenca (ECU) 1-1 Lanus (ARG)
Sportivo Luqueno (PAR) 1-1 Sao Paulo (BRA)
Colo Colo (CHI) 2-0 Boca Juniors (ARG)