Cerro Porteno march into next round
Paraguayan giants Cerro Porteno stormed into the second round of the Copa Sudamericana on Wednesday night with a 4-0 second-leg victory over Chilean side O'Higgins in Asuncion.
The first-round tie was evenly balanced after a 3-3 draw in the first leg in Rancagua two weeks ago, but it did not take Jorge Fossati's Cerro Porteno long to stamp their authority on proceedings in the second meeting.
Argentinian forward Jonathan Fabbro opened the scoring with a right-footed shot from outside the area in the 15th minute, and 60 seconds later Fidencio Oviedo converted from Hernan-Rodrigo Lopez's assist to make it 2-0.
The dismissal of O'Higgins defender Nelson Saavedra in the 63rd minute ended any hopes the visitors harboured of mounting an unlikely comeback, and the hosts soon made the most of their man advantage by stretching their lead with further goals from substitutes Santiago Salcedo and Alejandro Da Silva.
Salcedo was introduced in place of Hernan-Rodrigo Lopez in the 69th minute and made his mark with a goal five minutes later before Da Silva - on for Fabbro - finished things off in the last minute to round off a 7-3 aggregate triumph.
Oviedo told Fox Sports: "This is a very important win to us because it was not an easy tie. We won with attitude and sacrifice.
"Since the tournament started, we've been dreaming of winning the trophy for our centennial celebrations. We've made the first step, which was a very important one."
Fossati added: "We were solid and fast and profited from the space O'Higgins left in order to score the first goals."
Cerro Porteno will face either Venezuelan outfit Mineros or Colombia's La Equidad in the next round, the former holding a 1-0 advantage heading into Thursday night's second leg.
Elsewhere on Wednesday, Ecuadorian side Barcelona progressed with a 5-1 home victory over Venezuela's Deportivo Tachira, winning by the same score on aggregate following a goalless draw in San Cristobal two weeks ago.
Jose-Luis Perlaza put Barcelona ahead in the 15th minute and Michael Quinonez doubled their lead just after the half-hour.
Matias Oyola's penalty made it 3-0 two minutes before the interval and Holger Matamoros stretched the lead further seven minutes after the break but was then promptly red-carded for excessive celebrations.
Bryan de la Torre notched a fifth goal for 10-man Barcelona in the 65th minute before Cesar Gonzalez's spot-kick provided scant consolation for the visitors.
Barcelona will face Cobreloa in the second round after the Chilean side knocked out Paraguayan team Tacuary on Tuesday night.