Making their Copa Libertadores Group Stages debut, Brazilian side Santos traveled to Argentina, where they faced Defensa y Justicia at the Norberto Tomaghello Stadium, in Buenos Aires. The hosts opened the scoring but saw the Brazilians counting on their youngsters to come back from behind and consequently winning the Group G debuting match.
Playing away from home, Santos tried to impose themselves but were surprised by a good Defensa y Justicia side. The hosts seemed well-prepared for the Brazilians, and could annulate their main offensive actions.
The Argentines almost scored on 35 mins, but the ball smashed into the crossbar. However, the scoring was opened on the verge of half-time, as Rodriguez connected with a corner from Cardozo and scored. 1-0.
Willing to change the game in the second half, Santos’ Portuguese manager Jesualdo Ferreira introduced both Jobson and Kaio Jorge. And they had a decisive impact on the game’s fate.
Santos kept on pressing Defensa y Justicia throughout most of the second half and had Venezuelan Yeferson Soteldo as their most dangerous players.
Following much perseverance, the Brazilians were level as Diego Pituca triggered Soteldo down the left, as the Venezuelan picked Jobson out, as the latter headed home. 1-1.
Furthermore, the side who introduced both Pele and Neymar to the world could turn it around. In a counterattack armed by Soteldo, the ball was left for youngster Kaio Jorge – who was making his Copa Libertadores at the age of 18 -. The youngster powered home and rolled past the keeper on 85 minutes to give the lead to the Brazilians.
Santos returns to the field for the Copa Libertadores next Tuesday, as they will welcome Ecuadorians Delfin. Defensa y Justicia will travel to Paraguay, where they will take on the good side Olimpia, next Wednesday.