1-2: Junior beats Fluminense in Maracaná and takes a breath

The Junior Colombian beat the leader 1-2 on Tuesday Fluminense in the Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro and got three points that allowed him to revive in the Cup
Liberators by remaining with six, the same as River Plate, in Group D after almost saying goodbye to the tournament.

The Colombian club was not intimidated in the temple of Brazilian football in a match on the penultimate day of the Libertadores group stage. He played on the attack from the first minute, dominated much of the commitment and won with goals from Carmelo Valencia in the first half and Edwuin Cetré in the second.

The locals cut back with 15 minutes remaining in the game with a goal from Uruguayan Abel Hernández. The Barranquilla team now has 6 points, two less than the Brazilian (8) and the same as the Argentine River Plate (6), which on Wednesday will host the Colombian Santa Fe (2) and will be able to assume the leadership of Group D with a victory.

Fluminense, which with a victory could have guaranteed their qualification to the round of 16, now depends on their result in the last match, when they will visit River Plate.

The match began with the two teams attacking and the first clear goal chance was for Fluminense after two minutes, when Kayky received a ball from Ecuadorian Juan Cazares and narrowly defeated goalkeeper Sebastián Viera. A minute later, in a counterattack, Daniel Moreno tried a shot from afar and almost opened the scoring for Junior.

Both rivals continued taking turns in the attacks, although they generated little danger with the exception of the individual plays of Kayky, who had great freedom within the area.

The Colombian team tried permanently with Cetré and Didier Moreno, but also without getting too close to the goal defended by Marcos Felipe. Fluminense increased their chances but Viera managed to stop shots at Calegari and Luiz Henrique.

Junior opened the scoring in the 34th minute after a corner taken by Cetré and that Fuentes, from the left wing, raised perfectly for Carmelo Valencia’s header. With the partial advantage and after a shot with which Viera narrowly managed to increase the score from the center of the court, the Colombian team improved their game against a Fluminense with difficulties to attack.

Carmelo Valencia, from Junior, congratulated by Willer Ditta

Junior kept control in the second half and only needed 5 minutes to increase the score, with a strong shot from distance that Cetré managed, with great effect, to place close to Marcos Felipe’s left post. The coach of the Rio de Janeiro team, Roger Machado, completely changed the team with three simultaneous substitutions at 56 minutes for the entry of midfielders Nené and Gabriel Teixeira, and of attacker Caio Paulista.

Fluminense improved with the changes but continued without generating danger, while Junior began to play counterattacks and almost increased the score with a goal from Valencia that was canceled out of place.

The Carioca team only managed to discount in the 75th minute with a goal from Hernández, who had entered the field earlier to give Fluminense more offensive power, after an assist from Nené from the left.

With Fluminense encouraged by the discount and confident in the draw, the Junior coach, former defender Luis Perea, withdrew his team with three substitutions to play in defense but without giving up on counterattacks, which allowed the Colombians to hold out until the end and come out with the victory of the Maracana.