Emelec and Deportivo Quito rounded up a dreadful week in the Copa Sudamerica by both going out when progression looked certain.
Deportivo were protecting a 2 – 0 first leg win and needed only a draw or slim defeat to move into the quarters. In the end they were thumped 4 – 0 away to Tigres of Argentina after a late capitulation. The Negro Azules were only 1 – 0 down with 15 minutes and squeaking into the next round but 3 late goals sent them spiraling out of the Sudamericana in much the same way as last terms Copa Libertadores.
In Guayaquil, Emelec also exited the competition despite needing a home win. After a claiming an important away goal during their 2 -1 defeat to Universidad de Chile in Santiago in the first leg “the lightbulbs” had a great chance to move into the last 8.
Unfortunately they went down 0 – 1 in the Capwell Stadium after failing to claw back a 2nd half Gutierrez strike.
The historic feat of 4 teams in the last 16 of the Copa Sudamericana had been rightly lauded by many, with some announcing a Ecuadorian football renaissance. It seems that the Ecuadorian teams have found their level to be below that of the big guns and South American power-houses.
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Ok, more obsessiveness about Boca’s dcnilee. What a contrast in teams on display between Boca and Velez. Velez, very motivated, lots of energy, obviously well coached, marvelous work offensively. Boca, an old truck stuck in mud up to it’s axles, spinning tires hopelessly. Boca has gone steadily downhill since being booted out of the Libertadores when Migliore couldn’t handle that swerving shot. That led to a fracture between Palermo and Riquelme and the die was cast. Their last hurrah was the playoff victory involving Tigre and San Lorenzo, but everybody knows Boca was not the best team at that point.So, Humpty-Dumpty hasn’t been put back together and the results are clear to see. An aging, slow, boring team with no fire and much dissension right below the surface. Unfortunately, instead of selling off some of the older big names and letting others retire, Boca has sold off lots of young talent and kept Riquelme, Palermo and Ibarra. Even some players who had weathered the storm are starting to stink, Morel Rodriguez was the pits the other night. Ibarra looked like he was born in 1897. Gary Medel played with lots of energy, given he is new and doesn’t have any of the baggage accumulated by other Boca players over the past two years. The best player on the team over the past two years has been Julio Cesar Caceres. Consummate professional.The upshot, the Boca big cheese’s better start thinking about either cleaning house completely, or at minimum, letting either Palermo or Roman go. For me, better that both are exiled. I had high hopes with Coco’s return, but in my opinion, he has always done his best work with young, impressionable players that he can motivate and fit into a working system. He has few players like that at his disposal now. Time to clean out all that old shit in the attic, have a yard sale and start looking around for new talent.