Guyana lose 3-2 to El Salvador
Guyana’s chances of advancing further into the FIFA 2014 World Cup suffered a crushing blow when they went down to visitors El Salvador 3-2 yesterday at the National Stadium.
A fair-sized crowd saw the Guyanese blow numerous chances against the Salvadorans, while goalkeeper Richard Reynolds must have played his final game for Guyana after consecutive disappointing performances against the victors.
The hosts took the lead as early as the first minute when an unmarked Gregory ‘Jackie Chan’ Richardson collected a pass from the right side and hammered a shot past goalkeeper Dagoberto Portillo.
However, the Salvadorans responded seven minutes after through William Romero, who reached on to a cross from the right flank and placed a header through the legs of Reynolds.
Both teams enjoyed passages of play that they dominated, but solid defending combined with poor finishing kept the contest level at the half.
In the second period, Guyana went on the offensive early with Richardson and the lanky Carl Cort posing problems for the Salvadoran defence, but the visitors remained resolute and nullified the attacking forays by the hosts.
The visitors took the lead through Jaime Alas, who dribbled past two defenders, before firing a fierce right-footer past a transfixed Reynolds in the 51st minute to silence the Guyanese fans.
Guyana finally gained the equaliser when a cross from the right wing found the head of Cort, before landing in the path of a lurking Christopher Nurse, who trapped it neatly and then lashed it past a beaten Portillo in the 62nd minute of play and immediately the partisan local support erupted with celebrations.
El Salvador never seemed fazed and nearly got the go ahead goal when Reynolds, who clearly was having a poor night inexplicably charged out of his goal to make an interception, but luckily the shot taken by the Salvadoran player landed agonizingly outside the left upright much to the relief of the Guyanese supporters.
Richardson then had a wonderful opportunity to give the ‘Jaguars’ the lead for the second time in the match, but his tame header landed safely into the hands of Portillo.
Ricky Shakes shortly after delivered a stinging shot at goal, but once again Portillo was equal to the task, punching the ball back into play.
It was missed opportunities after miss opportunities as Nurse missed an attempt at a diving header off a cross from Trayon Bobb.
The visitors then got the most important goal of the game through Rafael Burgos, who beat Reynolds to his left.
Shortly after his goal, Guyana had a great chance to level the score when Richardson was brought down inside the penalty area, but Cort’s weak attempt from the penalty spot was saved by Cortillo, who was mobbed by his teammates, and shortly after the final whistle sounded.