Rivera brace helps lift Puerto Rico over Antigua & Barbuda with 3-2 win

PIGGOTTS, ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA. NOVEMBER 18th: Wilfredo Rivera #7 of Puerto Rico celebrates his goal during the League B Group D match between Antigua and Barbuda in the Concacaf Nations League, held at the ABFA Technical Center stadium, in Piggotts, Antigua and Barbuda. (PHOTO BY JEREMIE LEE/STRAFFON IMAGES/MANDATORY CREDIT/EDITORIAL USE/NOT FOR SALE/NOT ARCHIVE)

Puerto Rico continue their campaign for promotion with a 3-2 win over Antigua and Barbuda in League B of the 2023-24 Concacaf Nations League at the ABFA Technical Center in Piggotts, Antigua and Barbuda on Saturday.

The three points earned keeps Puerto Rico in second place in Group D and narrows the gap to three points from leaders Guyana.

Wilfredo Rivera put Puerto Rico in front 1-0 in the 7’ with a power hit inside the area after connecting on a cross from Darren Rios.

Rios himself got on the scoreboard in the 33’ with a chip over the goalkeeper to finish off a through ball service.

Colby Quinones nearly extended the lead in the 48’ but was blocked by Antigua and Barbuda goalkeeper Zaieem Scott.

Dion Pereira took one back for the home side, 2-1, in the 52’, connecting at the far post on a cross from Raheem Deterville.

Stephen Browne equalized in the 54′ 2-2 with a powerful shot from the right flank that was too difficult for Scott to contain.

Rivera retook the lead for the visitors in the 58’ with a deafening strike at the top of the box into the right bottom corner of goal.

The hosts nearly equalized again in the 60’ from a free kick, but Puerto Rico GK Joel Serrano was at the right place to stop a menacing header.

Joel Burgos, who has three goals scored in this campaign, was sent off in the 90+1’ after receiving a second yellow and will miss the final matchday due to suspension.

Serrano came away with a crucial save in the 90+4’ to deny Deterville the dramatic equalizer and then made a stop on Ashley Nathaniel-George two minutes later to secure the three points for Puerto Rico.

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