After this rapid pleasant surprise, "los Millonarios" stood their ground a bit more. This does not mean that they stopped attacking. In fact it was quite the contrary: the team had more clear opportunities than the Chileans, but were more cautious than usual.
In the second half River was a tad weaker, while Universidad Catolica some how gained some game. It was an overall boring 45 minutes, with the highlights being Abreu's goal, Luis Nunez's red card, and the injuries of several River players (Falcao, Tuzzio, Ahumada, and Cabral).
The Player Review -
Juan Pablo Carrizo: The future goalkeeper of Lazio does not get tired of displaying very solid performances. He made some top notch saves during the game and didn't commit any mistakes. Having agreed to officially join the Italian club at the end of the season, we must enjoy his world-class abilities while we can.
Paulo Ferrari: The defender often left empty spaces on the right side, causing the Chileans to have somewhat of an entry zone. As a side note, an important directive of Sevilla was in the Monumental analyzing Paulo in consideration of a future transfer.
Gustavo Cabral: The ex-Racing player had a good game and seems to be adapting slowly to the team. With no substitutions remaining, he effectively played a large portion of the second half injured.
Eduardo Tuzzio: Tuzzio did well, though he did commit some mistakes here and there. The negative? An injury caused him to be replaced by Danilo Gerlo. No word on the seriousness of it yet, but certain things indicate that he could miss a few games.
Cristian Villagra: The left-back provided us with another excellent performance. His poor levels are now a thing of the past, and it is no longer strange to have Cristian be one of the best playerse on the field.
Oscar Ahumada: Regular while on the pitch. The defensive midfielder was replaced towards the end of the first half by Ponzio due to an injury. He is expected to miss Sunday's encounter vs. Arsenal.
Matias Abelairas: Very active, especially in the first half. He recuperated the ball plenty of times, and also helped with some good offensive plays at the beginning of the game. As time passed, he began fading (something I had been noticing in the past as well). Does this mean that he is better suited as a substitute than a starter?
Mauro Rosales: The ex-Ajax foward was pure will. Mauro ran non-stop and helped both defensively (more than expected) and offensively. He has been improving lately, and Simeone seems to have recuperated a great player.
Diego Buonanotte: The "dwarf" was -once again- River's best player in terms of skill and disequilibration. He appeared on the left side, on the right side, through the middle. He gave good passes, regained the ball, juked opponents. Buonanotte improves game after game, and has rightfully auto-transformed himself from a sub to a key player.
Radamel Falcao Garcia: The Colombian played more up front, in his usual position. He awarded River with the 1-0 lead at the beginning of the game, and later continued contributing to the team in different ways. Positive image.
Sebastian Abreu: The Uruguayan foward was finally able to present us with a very good performance. He was the man of the match for participating in both goals (great assist for Falcao in the first goal, and he himself scored the second). He also ran a lot more and was very active. Last Sunday he witnessed the match vs. Velez from the bench. Was this what was needed to trigger a positive response from him?
The Substitutes -
Leonardo Ponzio: Replaced Ahumada and did well.
Nicolas Domingo: Nico played his first game since our loss vs. Universidad San Martin. Simeone brought him in to re-gain the ball and bring strength to the midfield. Not only did he do that, but a great run by him led to our second goal.
Danilo Gerlo: Decent match.
The Goals of the Match: