Colombia, Sweden play to 2-2 draw in Manaus

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Four matches played in the first day of competition in the Olympic men’s soccer tournament, and each managed to end in a draw. The latest to do so was the match between Colombia and Sweden, with the Group B sides playing to a 2-2 draw in Manaus.

Colombia carried the run of play early in the first half, and their pressure yielded the first scoring opportunity of the match. Captain Teo Gutierrez, who scored a goal in Colombia’s 3-0 win over Greece in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, calmly put a shot past the Swedish keeper to put the South Americans on the board in the 17th minute. Sweden would slowly work their way back into the match, pulling even in the 43rd minute in what may have been the best strike of the first day of the competition.

Mikael Ishak’s shot from outside of the 18 yard box whistled past Colombian keeper Cristian Bonilla to tie the match at one goal apiece, with the two teams combining to play some entertaining soccer in the first 45 minutes. It took Colombia and Sweden some time to get back into the flow of things in the second half, with the U-23 European champions being the first to do so. Astrit Adjarevic pounced on a rebound given up by Bonilla and put the resulting shot into the back of the net, giving Sweden a 2-1 lead in the 62nd minute. Sweden would hold off Colombia for the next 13 minutes, until defender Joakim Nilsson was called for handball inside the penalty area.

That gave Dorlan Pabon, who assisted on Colombia’s first goal, the opportunity to tie things up and the Monterrey forward took full advantage. Colombia threatened to grab the lead in the 87th minute, but Andreas Linde’s save of a Harold Preciado shot from point blank range kept the score knotted at two goals apiece. Sweden would have one final shot at all three points three minutes later, but Bonilla was up to the challenge and made sure to not allow for a rebound.

Both teams return to the pitch Sunday, with Colombia taking on Japan and Sweden facing Nigeria.