Sport Rosario extends contracts and will participate in the Copa Sudamericana

O n Sunday the 3rd of December, the last matches for the Clausura Tournament of the Primera División were played and Sport Rosario managed to beat Juan Aurich 2-0 on the final date of the closing tournament. The Huaraz-based team thus secured its place in the Copa Sudamericana 2018 and next year´s second most important tournament in South America. In an interesting match, Rosario´s win was secured by goals of Carlos Uribe and Cristian Adrianzén and as a result, Sport Rosario ended above bigger clubs such as Sporting Cristal, Huancayo and Municipal in the accumulated league table.

On the other hand, Sport Rosario´s opponent Juan Aurich and Alianza Atletico got relegated to the Second Division of professional football as they finished fifteenth and sixteenth respectively. The relegation of both teams became definite on November the 29th when the Peruvian Court of Sports Arbitration reversed the ruling that initially gave them a win and thus three points for their games against Real Gracilazo.

The newly promoted team from Huaraz, nicknamed Auriazules, did much better as was predicted at the start of the 2017 season. During the Summer Tournament (Torneo de Verano) Sport Rosario ended up runner-up behind Foot Ball Club Melgar from Arequipa, but before Peruvian champions of 2012, 2014 and 2016 Sporting Cristal from Lima. In the Apertura Tournament, Sport Rosario obtained 21 points (5 wins, 6 draws, 4 losses) and in the Clausura Tournament the team finished even sixth. (5 wins, 5 draws, 5 losses). In the accumulated league table, Los Canallas ended up seventh with a total of 65 points.

Alianza Lima got crowned champion of Peru after a drought of 10 years without a single title; the team won both the Apertura as the Clausura of 2017 and they will participate in the group phase of the Copa Libertadores 2018. Real Garcilaso from Cusco finished second, miles ahead of Melgar and Universitario, the latter will enter the first qualifying round of the Copa Libertadores. UTC (Universidad Técnica de Cajamarca), Sport Huancayo and Sporting Cristal will join Sport Rosario in the first phase of the Copa Sudamericana. The 2018 Copa CONMEBOL Sudamericana will be the 17th edition of the tournament and counts with 44 teams from 10 countries (Arg 6, Bol 4, Bra 6, Chi 4, Col 4, Ecu 4, Par 4, Per 4, Uru 4 and Ven 4). The first stage of the Copa Sudamericana will commence on the 13th of February of 2018.

Sporting Cristal´s Irven Beybe Ávila Acero became the 2017 Torneo Descentralizado de Fútbol Profesional topscorer with 22 league goals. Cristian Bogado from Paraguay scored 20 goals, two more than number three, the Panamanian professional association football striker Luis Carlos “Matador” Tejada Hansell of Universitario. Finally, Sport Rosario´s most successful goal scorer was Janio Carlo Posito Olazabal with 12 goals.

There was more good news for the local heroes of Sport Rosario as central defender Carlos Javier Beltrán Neroni renewed his contract for one more season at the Rosas Pampas Stadium. This example was soon followed by 33-year-old star goalkeeper Salomón Libman who also extended his contract with Sport Rosario for one more season. Libman is the player with the most matches played during the summer, opening and closing tournaments of the Peruvian Professional Highest Football Division, as he played all 44 matches throughout the 2017 season. Libman´s rolling contract and great form demonstrated throughout the season made he was wanted by some bigger clubs in Peru, however, he diceded to sign a new one-year-deal. Additionally, Paulo Goyoneche, José Canova and Anghello Vera also signed extensions of their contracts and may well taste some international football in 2018. Also, Colombian central defender Jhon Tapia was announced as the first new (free transfer) signing for the next season. The 29-year-old previously played for Peruvian minor clubs such as Sport Victoria, Torino de Talara, José Gálvez and Comerciantes Unidos.

Photo: Alfredo Osorio Trujillo

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