In the opening weekend of the 2011 Apertura it was The Strongest who made, well… the strongest, start to the campaign with an emphatic home victory over La Paz, while reigning champions Bolivar could only draw away to Universitario.
Six different players got on the scoresheet for The Strongest as they demolished La Paz 6-2 in the Estadio Hernando Silas, including Nelvin Soliz (the 2nd goal) and Alejandro Chumacero (the 6th), both of whom were watched by a Turkish entrepreneur intent on placing them with clubs in his homeland. The other goals are worth a watch too.
Bolivar began the defence of their title with a 1-1 draw at Universitario. William Ferreira capitalized on some hesitant defending to give Bolivar the lead just before half time only for Marcelo Gomes to snatch the three points from their grasp with an 82th minute equaliser.
Oriente Petrolero started their campaign in fine style with a 4-1 victory away to Real Mamore, giving little indication that they will miss Jhasmani Campos, who moved to Bolivar in the off-season. They were given far too much time on the ball, a problem only compounded when Mamore’s goalkeeper was sent off in the first half, and easily picked their way through the home defence, their score limited only by some poor finishing.
Darwin Rios, a player I had previously picked out as one of Bolivia’s three most promising young talents, scored a hat-trick as Guabira recorded a surprising 3-1 win away to Blooming. They were all pure poachers efforts, benefiting from some slick build-up play from his more experienced team-mates.
Finally, Real Potosi won 2-0 away to San Jose, while the match between Aurora and Nacional Potosi was postponed.