1999 Conmebol Copa America Group Stage: Colombia’s Victory and the Penalty Shootout Night


On July 4, 1999 in Luque, Paraguay, Argentina national team faced the Colombia team. The 11 chosen by Marcelo Bielsa were: Burgos, Vivas, Ayala, Samuel, Zanetti, Simeone, Riquelme, Sorin, González, Barros Schelotto and Palermo. The Tricolor, led by Javier Alvarez, went out to the field with the following players: Calero, Bermudez, Cordoba, Quintana, Viveros, Bolaño, Grisales, Betancourth, Bonilla and Ricard. From the first minute, it was a high-intensity game. The Albiceleste attacked and put pressure on the rival’s team defensive line, which made the match tougher.

Emotions popped up quickly in this intense match. 5 minutes into the game, a penalty kick was awarded to the Argentina national team. The man in charge of kicking was Martin Palermo, who shot it well over the crossbar and wasted the first penalty kick of the match. Five minutes later, while the Colombia national team was attacking, Nelson Vivas hit Betancourth, the defensive midfielder. This ended up in the second penalty kick of the night. The kicker was Ivan Cordoba, who made a powerful shot to put it in the back of the net and celebrated the first goal of the match.  

The second half started with the Cafetero team making pressure on its rival and looking for the second goal. 48’ into the game, the third penalty kick of the night was awarded by the referee. This time, Hamilton Ricard was the one who kicked it; however, Mono Burgos had a feeling and caught the ball. Argentina national team, taking advantage of the fact that the goal difference was of only one, tried to even the match.

75 minutes gone and a center on the left connected with the head of Martin Palermo. However, the ball touched a Colombian player’s hand on the way to the goal, and ended up being the second penalty kick for Argentina national team, and the fourth of the match. Once more, the number ‘9’ was in charge of kicking it; but his misfortune made him missed it again and threw the ball over the crossbar.

A few minutes later, a corner coming from the right side was deflected by a Colombian player towards the line of the goal area. As a result, Edwin Arturo Congo, who had recently entered the field, scored it with a backheel. The score was now 2-0 in favor of the Tricolor. 87′ into the game, the Albiceleste lost possession of the ball in the midfield and resulted in a counterattack of the Colombian team. It was led by Montaño who, being 30 meters away from the goal, kicked the ball and made it enter, going above Burgos.

The score was 3-0, but the match hadn’t finished yet. The Albiceleste’s attack resulted in Palermo controlling the ball and heading to the goal area, where he was knocked down by a Colombian defender. Since the Argentinean player wanted to redeem himself, he made the shot from the penalty spot one more time. Unfortunately, he missed the goal due to the fantastic save made by Miguel Calero.

Without a doubt, this was an amazing match that had changing situations and excitement. It will be remembered in the history of the CONMEBOL Copa America, which is the world’s oldest national team tournament.

Click here and watch the recap of the game on YouTube 



CORDOBA Ivan Ramiro (COL) (10′, penal), CONGO Edwin Arturo (COL) (79′), MONTAÑO Johnnier (COL) (87′).


RICARD Hamilton (COL) (38′), VIVAS Nelson (ARG) (39′), QUINTANA Rubiel (COL) (74′), CALERO Miguel (COL) (84′).


ZANETTI Javier Adelmar (ARG) (68′).


At 5′ PALERMO (ARG) missed a penalty kick.

At 48′ BURGOS (ARG) saved a penalty kick made by RICARD (COL).

At 76′ PALERMO (ARG) missed a penalty kick.

At the age of 90′ CALERO (COL) saved a penalty kick made by PALERMO (ARG).