Bolivia beat Uruguay 3-0 to revive World Cup qualifying hopes

La Paz – Bolivia scored twice in the first half then missed a penalty and had a man sent off in a 3-0 win over Uruguay today, a result that revived their World Cup qualification chances and dealt a blow to their rivals’ hopes of making Qatar 2022.

The defeat marked the first time Uruguay had lost four qualifiers in a row and further tightens the South American race for a place in next year’s finals.

Bolivia move to 15 points from 14 games, one point behind their opponents, who are level on 16 with Chile and Colombia.

The top four qualify automatically for Qatar, and the fifth-placed side go into an inter-regional playoff.

Brazil, who face Argentina later today, are the only country out of the 10 South American sides to have guaranteed their place at the finals so far.

Peru also boosted their chances of qualifying with a 2-1 win away to bottom side Venezuela.

Gianluca Lapadula put the visitors in front with a header after 18 minutes only for Darwin Machis to equalise seven minutes into the second half.

Cristian Cueva’s free-kick restored Peru’s lead after 65 minutes and Machis’s penalty miss three minutes later ensured that Peru moved onto 17 points.

In the two other group games beng played later today, Colombia host Paraguay and Chile are at home to Ecuador.

In La Paz, Juan Carlos Arce put Bolivia ahead after 29 minutes when goalkeeper Fernando Muslera let his speculative cross sneak through his hands into the net, and Marcelo Moreno made it two with a header seconds before halftime.

Moreno, the top scorer in the South American qualifiers, missed a penalty after 62 minutes and, although substitute Carmelo Algaranaz was sent off 12 minutes later, Arce netted his second and Bolivia’s third with 11 minutes to go.

The result means Bolivia have won four of their seven home qualifiers at high altitude ― a record that compares with no victories from their seven away games. ― Reuters

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