MOSCOW – Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal gave Chile a 2-0 victory over Cameroon on Sunday in Group B Confederations Cup action in the Russian capital.
Although neither team had found the twine by the break, Sanchez’s entry into play 15 minutes after play resumed was the key in La Roja’s victory, given that he helped manufacture both goals for his squad.
Chile had come out playing hard and within the first minute on the pitch, Eduardo Vargas fired a cannon-blast toward Cameroon goalkeeper Fabrice Ondoa, albeit one that bounced off the lefthand post.
Vidal was the engine driving the South American team, which created but squandered numerous chances for goals shortly after the start of the match, during which time they fully dominated Cameroon’s Indominable Lions.
Ondoa made three absolutely great saves in the first half, in addition to fending off numerous passed.
In the 16th minute, Cameroon knocked in a header but the goal was annulled due to a prior foul against Vidal.
Little by little, however, the Africans managed to erode the momentum of the Chileans.
With just five minutes remaining before the break, Vargas – helped by Vidal – managed to find himself alone in front of the net at Spartak stadium before some 33,500 fans but his goal was annulled after the Video Assistant Referee ruled offside.
After the break, Sanchez coming onto the pitch helped alleviate the growing pressure being exercised by Cameroon, headed by Christian Bassogog and then in the 80th minute, on a pass by Sanchez, Vidal finally managed to knock in an uncontested header to make it 1-0.
And nine minutes later, after a great play by Sanchez, Vargas scored only to have the referee nullify it, although the VAR replay showed clearly that the goal was legitimate and it was awarded to the Chileans.