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Copa America

  • July 8, 2011
  • • 23:15
  • • Estadio Malvinas Argentinas, Mendoza, Provincia de Mendoza
  • Referee: C. Amarilla

Uruguay 1-1 Chile: Alexis Sanchez denies Uruguayans first victory in the 2011 Copa America

Uruguay 1-1 Chile: Alexis Sanchez denies Uruguayans first victory in the 2011 Copa America

(Getty Image)

An entertaining clash in the Copa America saw Chile's Alexis Sanchez cancel out Alvaro Pereira's strike as both teams earned a point from their second group game

Alvaro Pereira and Alexis Sanchez each found the net in the second half as Chile and Uruguay played out a thrilling 1-1 draw in the Copa America.

With the Estadio Malvinas Argentinas in Mendoza drenched in red and blue, a victory for the Chileans would send them through to the quarter-finals with one group game to spare.

But it was Uruguay who made the better start, putting pressure on their opponents right after the opening whistle. The Group C leaders looked to play through Sanchez down the right, but they were barely able to string passes together and it was their rivals that got the best chances early on.

Diego Forlan knocked a long ball down for Edison Cavani at the top of the box. The Napoli man, with his back to the goal, flicked the ball over his head to Luis Suarez, sending the former Ajax star through on goal, but the striker could only hammer his shot over the bar.

With Chile failing to produce quality looks on goal, Claudio Borghi's men nearly gave the opener away moments later. Pablo Contreras looked to play the ball back to goalkeeper Claudio Bravo, but Suarez intercepted in the middle of the box, taking it towards the by-line before lofting a cross to Forlan near the back post, but the Atletico Madrid striker's weak header was cleared off the line.

Neither team could find the breakthrough in the opening 45 minutes, but Chile almost scored a bizarre goal just before the interval when Sebastien Coates' clearance ricochet off Mauricio Isla from 25 yards out, and the ball looped over Nestor Muslera only to cannon back out off the bar.

It took Uruguay just eight minutes into the restart to break the deadlock thanks to the determination of Suarez, who controlled the ball in the crowded box before beating his marker to the by-line to send in a low cross to Pereira right in front of goal. With no defenders around him, the former CFR Cluj man settled the ball in front of goal before slotting home a low shot.

Chile responded ten minutes later when Sanchez fired home from the middle of the box into the bottom right corner of the goal off a pass from Jean Beausejour to level the score.

Both teams continued to press forward in search of a winning goal, with Uruguay's Muslera the busiest of the two goalkeepers in the final stages as he pulled off two important saves to helps his side to a share of the spoils. Chile remain in first place with four points, while Uruguay have two points.

Next, the 14-time Copa America winners will take on Mexico in their final group game. The Chileans will face Peru.

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