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50-50: Liverpool vs. Real Madrid

Champions League 1 day ago
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By ESPN Staff
Apr 17, 2008

Libertadores: Santos scrape through with late goal

RIO DE JANEIRO, April 16 (Reuters) - Santos scraped into the last 16 of the Libertadores Cup by coming from behind to beat Cucuta 2-1 at home with a last-minute goal on Wednesday.

Argentina's San Lorenzo also qualified with a 3-0 win over Venezuelan champions Caracas FC, whose goalkeeper Vicente Rosales scored an own goal and gave away another with a dreadful blunder.

Santos finished second in Group Six with 10 points, one ahead of Guadalajara whose 3-0 away win over Bolivian champions San Jose was in vain.

Colombian provincial side Cucuta, who topped the group with 11 points, had already qualified.

'It wasn't pretty, it wasn't brilliant but it was exactly what we needed,' Santos coach Emerson Leao said. 'This is what the Libertadores is about.'

Cucuta, surprise semi-finalists last year, stunned Pele's former club when midfielder Lin Carlos Henry curled in a free kick in the 23rd minute.

Kleber Pereira equalised for the Brazilians in the 69th minute but tempers flared shortly afterwards with an ugly clash which led to red cards for Henry and Santos defender Domingos.

Leao was then ordered from the touchline for a furious, finger-pointing protest to the linesman.

With Guadalajara winning in Bolivia, Santos were facing elimination until the 89th minute.

They were rescued when Kleber's chipped cross was misjudged by Andres Castellanos, the ball hit the crossbar and Mariano Tripodi volleyed in the rebound.

Despite playing at 3,700 metres above sea level in the Bolivian mining town of Oruro, Guadalajara controlled their game and led 2-0 at halftime with a brace from Sergio Avila.

Gonzalo Pineda added the third for the Mexicans in the 55th minute, one minute after San Jose had Sandro Coelho sent off.

San Lorenzo and Caracas began their Group One match in Buenos Aires level on seven points as they fought for second spot behind Cruzeiro, who had already qualified.

Caracas needed a draw but were on the back foot after Gonzalo Bergessio put San Lorenzo ahead in the 16th minute and Rosales turned the ball into his own goal following a scramble in the 35th.

Rosales's evening was complete in the 79th minute when he rushed out of his area to kick the ball clear but missed it completely, allowing Andres Silvera to score into an empty net.