Mena pulls strings as Ecuador rout Colombia

Source: Xinhua| 2020-11-18 09:04:57|Editor: huaxia

QUITO, Nov. 17 (Xinhua) -- Angel Mena scored one goal and set up two others as Ecuador thrashed Colombia 6-1 in their 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier here on Tuesday.

The result at Estadio Rodrigo Paz in Quito marked Ecuador's third successive qualifying victory and left them second in the provisional 10-team South American zone standings.

Not since 1977, when Colombia lost 6-0 to Brazil at Rio's Maracana stadium, have the Cafeteros conceded six goals in a World Cup qualifier.

It completed a wretched week for Carlos Queiroz's men, who suffered a 3-0 loss to Uruguay in Barranquilla on Friday - their worst ever home defeat in an official match.

Robert Arboleda opened the scoring for the hosts in the seventh minute by turning smartly and sending a first-time volley into the bottom left corner after Moises Caicedo's flicked header.

Mena struck two minutes later as he received a long ball from Xavier Arreaga and shimmied onto his left foot to drill a low shot past goalkeeper.

The Leon forward then turned provider with a clever run down the left and a precise cross that presented Michael Estrada with an easy tap in.

Ecuador were running rampant and Arreaga made it 4-0 by side-footing home a close-range volley after Robert Arboleda headed on Gonzalo Plata's diagonal cross.

Colombia managed to stem the tide - if only temporarily - via a James Rodriguez penalty after Duvan Zapata was brought down by Arreaga just before halftime.

But Ecuador wrested back the initiative and Plata made it 5-0 when he played a slick a one-two with Mena before curling a left-footed effort that rebounded in off the far post.

The hosts were reduced to 10-men when Plata was handed a second yellow card for his excessive goal celebration.

But the numerical disadvantage did not halt the Tricolor's momentum and Pervis Estupinan completed the rout in stoppage time with a fizzing 25-yard freekick that beat goalkeeper Camilo Vargas at his near post. Enditem