Atletico Mineiro entered the Copa Libertadores final as favorites to lift the trophy for the first time in their history, but they'll go home as underdogs after a poor result in Paraguay. Olimpia kept a clean sheet at home on Wednesday night and added a vital goal in stoppage time to defeat the Galo 2-0.
There was a stoppage early in the match after Atletico Mineiro teammates Pierre and Josue collided, resulting in the former player picking up a nasty cut. Thankfully, he was back on the pitch shortly and was able to finish the match.
Diego Tardelli had a goal disallowed in the 6th minute, and perhaps incorrectly. He was ruled offside on the goal even though he looked to be level with the defense when the ball was played into him and an Olimpia defender misplayed the ball, touching it into his path before the flag went up. The linesman apparently missed the touch and Atletico Mineiro had a seemingly good goal taken off the board.
Olimpia took advantage of their good fortune in the 22nd minute and went ahead 1-0, thanks to Alejandro Silva. Tardelli had a big hand in the goal, defending Silva lazily and letting the Olimpia man blow past him on the right wing. Silva cut inside and blew by a couple more defenders before placing a low shot to the near post from just outside the penalty area. Unfortunately for his club, Silva took off his shirt in celebration and was shown a yellow card. That booking will keep him out of the second leg of the final.
While Atletico Mineiro were the more threatening team for the rest of the first half and in the early part of the second half, they were unable to turn their chances into goals. Olimpia goalkeeper Martin Silva was excellent on the night, making five crucial saves.
In the 64th minute, with Atletico Mineiro needing a bit of a spark, Cuca took off a very ineffective Ronaldinho. Unsurprisingly, Ronaldinho was displeased with the decision and gave his manager a nasty look as he walked off the pitch.
Fredy Bareiro should have doubled his team's lead in the 82nd minute, but failed to direct his shot on target from six yards while facing an open net. He likely would have caught quite a bit of heat for his miss had the game ended 1-0 or worse for Olimpia, but he'd eventually get bailed out by a series of events in the closing minutes of the game.
Atletico Mineiro fullback Richarlyson, a notorious hothead, picked up his second yellow card of the match and was sent off in the 90th minute. With a man advantage, Olimpia pushed hard for a second goal in stoppage time and would eventually get it in dramatic fashion. Rever took down Enzo Prono 20 yards from goal in the 93rd minute, just as the referee was preparing to blow his whistle. Wilson Pittoni stepped up and curled a perfect free kick past Victor and a defender on the near post, doubling his team's lead and giving them an even bigger cushion heading to Minas Gerais.