It will take more than a win over Binacional at an empty Monumental to forget about the disappointment of last Saturday’s Superliga finish but an eight-goal thrashing to kick start the Copa Libertadores campaign will certainly ease the pain.
Such was the gulf in quality between River and their Peruvian opponents the margin of victory was flattering to the visitors and on another evening River could have had in excess of double figures.
Nicolás De la Cruz and Ignacio Fernández had both missed from the penalty spot before Milton Casco eventually forced the opening goal after 37 minutes. Some uncharacteristic poor finishing from Rafael Santos Borré and some good goalkeeping from Raúl Fernández some how kept the lead at only one at the break.
Yet with Binacional offering nothing in attack, when Santos Borré slid in the second ten minutes after the restart the floodgates opened.
Substitute Jorge Carrascal latched on to Enzo Pérez’s clipped pass over the top for a simple third before Nacho Fernández headed in a well worked fourth.
Robert Rojas headed in number five at a corner, Paulo Díaz joined the attack to thrash in a sixth and Matías Suárez skipped around makeshift goalkeeper Dahwling Leudo following injury to Raúl Fernández to make it seven.
There was still time for Nacho Fernández to grab his second of the game and the training ground exercise eventually came to an end.
Binacional’s result last week at home against São Paulo demonstrates their threat in Juliaca but they were simply no competition for River Plate at the Monumental. With the Brazilians beating Liga de Quito all four teams in Group D have three points after two games and River can beat São Paulo next week, they will be back in firm control.
River Plate 8 – 0 Binacional
Defensa y Justicia on the other hand have already left themselves a mountain to climb in order to progress from Group G after following up last week’s loss to Santos with defeat to Olimpia.
There was little between the two sides until Carlos Rolón headed in from a corner on the hour mark but Hernán Crespo will have been disappointed with how his side managed the remaining 30 minutes.
Given Olimpia saw Emmanuel Adebayor sent off for a boot to the head of Enzo Coacci soon after taking the lead the fact that the ten men were able to double the advantage through Brian Montenegro’ss header will feel like a missed opportunity.
Marcelo Benítez pulled a goal back in injury time but it was nothing more than a consolation. Next week’s game against Delfín now a must win if El Halcón are to remain in contention.