VIDEO: Pizarro goal gives Peru points against 10-man Venezuela

Peru beat 10-man Venezuela 1-0 in Valparaiso to throw Copa America Group C wide open.

VIDEO: Pizarro goal gives Peru points against 10-man Venezuela

Peru 1 Venezuela 0

Peru beat 10-man Venezuela 1-0 in Valparaiso to throw Copa America Group C wide open.

Claudio Pizarro’s 72nd-minute goal means all four teams in the group – Brazil and Colombia are the others – have three points with Sunday’s final round of fixtures to play.

Peru deserved Saturday’s success, with Venezuela paying the price for the dismissal of Fernando Amorebieta just before the half-hour mark.

The first half at the Estadio Elias Figueroa Brander was a tight affair, with only two decent goalscoring opportunities.

In the sixth minute Salomon Rondon briefly found space eight yards out and shot goalwards on the stretch for Venezuela – but goalkeeper Pedro Gallese collected comfortably.

Venezuela would have guaranteed their place in the quarter-finals with a win after victory in their opening match against Colombia – but their hopes took a knock when defender Amorebieta was given a straight red card for appearing to stamp on Paolo Guerrero.

Peru’s best chance of the first half came five minutes before half-time – but striker Guerrero dragged his effort wide.

The second half was more open – with the extra man helping Peru create the better chances.

After Guerrero had headed over, Christian Cueva drilled a shot wide, then Juan Vargas was off target with two left-foot efforts from distance.

Alejandro Guerra wasted a breakaway chance for Venezuela on the hour – and 12 minutes later Peru made the decisive breakthrough.

In trying to clear a Cueva ball, Venezuela’s Tomas Rincon inadvertently slid the ball into the path of Pizarro, who made no mistake with a powerful finish.

There was no way back for La Vinotinto, who must avoid defeat against Brazil if they are to have any chance of reaching the last eight. Peru face Colombia in Temuco in Sunday’s other Group C match.

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