Historic Victory for Bolivia as they Defeat Peru 2-0
It may not have been a dazzling display of skill or a match filled with extraordinary plays, but in the city of La Paz, none of that mattered. What truly counts is that Bolivia, under the guidance of their new coach Antonio Carlos Zago, secured a remarkable 2-0 victory against Peru, lifting themselves from the bottom of the 2026 World Cup Qualifiers table.
A Slow Start Leads to a Crucial Goal
The game began at a sluggish pace, with both teams struggling to find their rhythm. However, it was Bolivia who managed to break the deadlock after 20 minutes. Henry Vaca unleashed a powerful left-footed shot into the net, courtesy of a well-executed pass from Marcelo Moreno Martins. This goal brought a wave of excitement to the loyal local supporters, who had been eagerly awaiting a breakthrough.
On the other hand, Peru failed to mount a significant response. Their only notable chance came from a deflected header by Lapadula, highlighting their lack of attacking prowess and determination.
A Bittersweet Farewell and a Memorable Goal
The second half commenced with a flurry of fouls and a noticeable lack of precision from both sides. However, at the 75-minute mark, the match took an emotional turn. Marcelo Moreno Martins, Bolivia’s all-time leading goal scorer with 31 goals, bid farewell to his national team in front of his adoring fans. The stadium erupted with thunderous applause and heartfelt songs of gratitude. Jair Reinoso, a naturalized Colombian, took his place on the field.
Then, at the 87th minute, jubilation swept through the Bolivian camp. Ramiro Vaca unleashed a stunning long-range strike, finding the back of the net after a precise pass from Jaime Arrascaita. The goal had to undergo a VAR review before being officially awarded, adding to the suspense and celebration among the Bolivian players and supporters.
A Triumph that Alters the Landscape
Antonio Carlos Zago accomplished what many deemed impossible: securing Bolivia’s first victory in the Qualifiers, and doing so on home soil in La Paz. While this triumph does not drastically alter the overall standings, it does lift Bolivia from the bottom of the table. They now sit in ninth place with 3 points, while Peru languishes at the bottom with just one point to their name.