Chile’s hopes of qualifying for the 2022 World Cup are hanging in the balance after they suffered a 2-0 home defeat to Ecuador.
The South American nation failed to reach the 2018 edition of the tournament and currently sit sixth in the CONMEBOL group.
Only the top five teams in the group progress to the next stage, with Brazil and Argentina’s places out in Qatar next year already confirmed.
Chile – who won the Copa America in both 2015 and 2016 – will have to improve massively in their final four matches if they’re to leapfrog either Peru or Colombia into the qualification places.
The match against Ecuador got off to the worst possible start for them as Pervis Estupinan gave the visitors the lead after just nine minutes.
Then just before the clock ticked over to 15 minutes played, veteran midfielder Arturo Vidal was shown a straight red card.
The Inter Milan enforcer can have no complaints about the decision whatsoever, as he was guilty of one of the worst high foot tackles you’ll ever see on Felix Torres Caicedo.
Take a look at footage of the incident here…
Video: Vidal deservedly shown straight red card vs Ecuador
The former Barcelona man looked genuinely sorry after making contact, but his reckless actions still had to be punished in the most severe way possible.
Chile never really recovered from the setback of Vidal being dismissed from the field of play.
The team mustered just two shots on target throughout the entirety of the match, before Moises Caicedo made sure of the three points for the visiting side with a 93rd-minute goal.
Sam Allardyce on Newcastle, Conte and more (Football Terrace)
Ecuador are now six points clear in third-place and look nailed on to reach the 2022 World Cup, which would be a mighty impressive achievement.
Chile’s remaining four qualifiers see them take on Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Bolivia, which is certainly a tough run.
Vidal and Alexis Sanchez’s dreams of a ‘Last Dance’ out in Qatar may not become reality after all…