Rio de Janeiro: Argentina’s San Lorenzo took a step towards the Copa Libertadores quarter-finals with a 1-0 away victory over Ecuador’s CS Emelec.
Fernando Belluschi scored just before the half-hour mark on Thursday, meaning the 2014 champions will need only a draw in the return match on August 10 to qualify for the last eight, reports Xinhua news agency.
Brazil’s Botafogo also secured a 1-0 away victory in their round of 16 first leg against Nacional of Uruguay after a first-half strike from Joao Paulo in Montevideo.
Earlier, Diego Bejarano scored in second-half stoppage time to earn Bolivia’s The Strongest a 1-1 home draw with Lanus of Argentina. Nicolas Pasquini had given the visitors the lead just before halftime.
The Copa Libertadores is South America’s top club competition, featuring teams from the 10 member nations of the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL).
The winners will qualify for the FIFA Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates in December.