Canada advances to Copa America quarterfinals with goalless draw vs. Chile

Maxime Crepeau finished with three saves to lead Canada to a scoreless draw with Chile at Inter&Co Stadium on Saturday night, sending the Canadians to the quarterfinal round of Copa America in their first appearance.

Chile was forced to play a man down after Gabriel Suazo was issued a second yellow card in the 27th minute, but Canada (1-1-1) could not take advantage. Suazo also received a yellow card in the 12th minute, leading to the red card.

Gabriel Arias saved two shots for Chile (0-1-2). Arias had both of his saves and Crepeau, the keeper for Major League Soccer’s Portland Timbers, had one in the first half.

Canada advanced to the quarterfinals, which begin on Thursday, when Group A leader Argentina beat Peru 2-0. Argentina, the favourites to win the event for a second straight time, won all three of its matches in group play. Argentina beat Brazil 1-0 in the championship match in 2021, the last time the tournament was held. Argentina and Uruguay have both won the title 15 times.

Chile concluded its Copa America group stage without head coach Ricardo Gareca, who was handed a one-match suspension because he was late in bringing on a player at halftime in a loss to Argentina on Tuesday.

Canada beat Peru for the first time in the second match of group play.

Canada and Chile were playing for the first time in the 21st century.

Canada is trying to become the fourth team to win more than one match in its first Copa America appearance. Uruguay won twice in 1916. Mexico won twice in 1993 and Honduras notched three victories in 2001.

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Chile did not score a goal in its three matches. The only other time Chile failed to score in the Copa America was in 1917

Messi-less Argentina tops Peru

Lautaro Martinez scored twice and Argentina, playing without the injured Lionel Messi, wrapped up Copa America group play with a 2-0 win over Peru on Saturday night.

A nicely placed through ball from Angel Di Maria led to Martinez’s goal in the 46th minute. Martinez was embraced by teammates afterward, then went to hug Messi, who was standing near Argentina’s bench.

Martinez doubled Argentina’s lead in the 86th minute and now has a tournament-leading four goals.

Messi did not play Saturday as he nurses a leg injury suffered in Argentina’s 1-0 victory over Chile on Tuesday that clinched a quarterfinal berth for the defending champions. Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni was also absent after being suspended because of his team’s late second-half return to the pitch in its previous two Copa matches.

Saturday, the Albiceleste walked out for the second half just a few seconds before Peru.

Playing with nine changes to its starting lineup, Argentina controlled possession (74%) for the third straight match and had six shots on goal, while being held scoreless in the first half for the third straight match.

The game was played in front of about 64,000 fans at the Miami Dolphins’ Hard Rock Stadium, which will also host the final on July 14. Most fans cheered for Argentina while wearing different versions of Messi’s No. 10 jersey.

Canada played Chile to a scoreless draw in another Group A match on Saturday in Orlando, Florida, to also advance to the quarterfinal round.

Argentina will learn its knockout stage opponent when Group B finishes on Sunday. Group leader Venezuela plays Jamaica at Austin, Texas, and second-place Ecuador plays Mexico at Glendale, Arizona.

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Nicolas Tagliafico appeared to score for Argentina in the 55th minute after tapping in the ball at the back post, but the officials ruled that goaltender Pedro Gallese, who made four saves, was blocked and the goal was waived off.

Argentina had another chance when the team was awarded a penalty after a handball in the box by Jesus Castillo. Leandro Paredes blasted the ball into the right post, and the score remained 1-0.

Goaltender Emiliano Martinez made one save.

Peru was held without a goal for the third of the tournament and has no goals in 11 of its last 14 matches. Peru played a scoreless draw against Chile in its Copa America opener, then lost 1-0 to Canada. The team reached the semifinals in 2021 before losing to Brazil.

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