Colombia 0-2 Chile: Early double sees Chile play Argentina in Copa America final
Last Updated: 23/06/16 8:31am
Chile will face Argentina in the Copa America final after beating Colombia 2-0 in a weather-disrupted semi-final that took more than four hours to complete.
The defending champions advanced to a repeat of last year's final against Argentina on Sunday, with Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Charles Aranguiz opening the scoring in the seventh minute before Jose Pedro Fuenzalida made it 2-0 four minutes later.
Fuenzalida was the architect of Chile's opener, racing clear of the Colombian defence down the right flank before crossing to Alexis Sanchez.
The Arsenal star was beaten to the ball by Colombia's Juan Cuadrado, but he could only succeed in heading back to the feet of Aranguiz who tapped in from close range.
Four minutes later, Chile doubled their lead. A long goal kick from Chile goalkeeper Claudio Bravo found Sanchez, who turned Santiago Arias on the edge of the penalty area before unleashing a low shot against the bottom of the post with Fuenzalida on hand to tap home.
Chile's explosive start to the contest was stemmed at half-time, as a powerful thunderstorm halted play.
Spectators were ordered to take shelter inside the stadium, leaving the ground empty as torrential rain pounded the stands.
For a while it looked as if play would be abandoned, with the teams forced to return to the venue on Thursday to complete the remaining 45 minutes.
However, a break in the weather allowed teams of ground staff to set about clearing excess water from the field, and after a delay of two hours and 25 minutes, the second half resumed.
Colombia had appeals for a penalty waved away early in the second half when Daniel Torres tumbled over the outstretched leg of Gonzalo Jara in the penalty area.
With Real Madrid star James Rodriguez doing his best to take control of the match, Colombia looked lively in attack but were unable to find the final ball to unlock Chile's defence.
The Colombians' job became even more daunting in the 57th minute when Aston Villa midfielder Carlos Sanchez was sent off, collecting a second yellow for a clumsy challenge on Aranguiz.
The closing stages of the game descended into a niggly encounter, with referee Chicas Aguilar of El Salvador eventually issuing eight yellow cards and one red.
Colombia continued to chase the game relentlessly, but came up short, paying the price for a lackadaisical start which saw Chile seize control with two goals in the first 11 minutes.
Sunday's final will be the second time Argentina and Chile have met in the tournament. Argentina beat Chile 2-1 in their opening Group D match earlier this month.