By Robbie Blakeley, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Botafogo progressed into the last sixteen of the Copa do Brasil after a nervy 4-3 penalty shoot out win against Figueirense last night. The Glorioso lost the match 1-0, but as they won the first leg by the same result it took penalties to separate the sides.
Botafogo started the brighter but fell behind after just nine minutes. Rodrigo crossed from the left and Ricardo Bueno, completely unmarked, headed the game’s only goal.
The Rio club maintained their dominance but failed to break down a resistant Figueirense back line. Seedorf, Lodeiro and Vitinho found no way to supply front man Rafael Marques, waiting in isolation up front.
Nicolas Lodeiro came close to equalizing just before half-time but goalkeeper Tiago Volpi smothered the ball at the second attempt. Volpi went on to save his side on more than one occasion during the second half as Botafogo dominated proceedings.
He palmed away another Lodeiro effort before Marques blasted a shot wide. Figueirense began to break on the counter, sensing they could snatch the game in normal time and avoid the lottery of a penalty shoot-out.
Yet they seemed to lack the technical ability of their opponents. As the final whistle neared, the hosts began to tire and Botafogo wrested back the initiative, although Seedorf wasting a good opportunity in the dying moments.
Lodeiro missed Botafogo’s first penalty but Ricardo Bueno missed the target for Figueirense. The next four takers all found their mark before Volpi saved Edilson’s effort, only for Jefferson to then save from André Rocha.
Dória and Thiego both scored to make the score 3-3 on penalties. Rafael Marques converted for Botafogo before Jefferson blocked Nem’s effort to give the Cariocas the 4-3 win.
The draw for the next round is on August 6th. The clubs that played in this year’s Copa Libertadores (with Vasco replacing São Paulo, who will defend their Copa Sul-Americana crown) will enter the competition.
Read more (in Portuguese).
* The Rio Times Daily Updates feature is offered to help keep you up-to-date with important news as it happens.
Did you like this article? As an independent community news publisher we need advertising and reader support. Please consider making a US$10 or US$50 donation, or buy one of our new T-Shirts online (which provides US$5 to The Rio Times).