Ecuador bounce back to thump lethargic Peru 5-1

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QUITO, Nov 22 (Reuters) Ecuador, playing under interim coach Sixto Vizuete, picked up their first points in the South American World Cup qualifying group by thumping a sorry Peru 5-1.

Having lost their first three games and conceded five goals in each of their last two, Ecuador raced to a 3-0 lead with goals from Walter Ayovi, Ivan Kaviedes and Edison Mendez.

Ayovi and Mendez scored again after halftime to leave Ecuador with three points from four games in the group and Peru with two. Andres Mendoza scored Peru's consolation.

Vizuete, appointed as caretaker when Luis Fernando Suarez quit immediately after Saturday's 5-1 thrashing in Paraguay, recalled Ivan Hurtado for his 146th cap but the stalwart defender had almost nothing to do.

Peru, incapable of putting two passes together and astonishingly apathetic, were unrecognisable from the team which drew 1-1 with Brazil on Sunday after making six changes to their starting line-up.

Their side, for the match at 2,800 metres above sea level, included several players who are used to playing at high altitude but have little international experience. Those left out included PSV Eindhoven striker Jefferson Farfan.

Coach Jose del Solar was seen smiling on the touchline when the fourth goal went in yesterday, a reaction which is bound to cause controversy. At other times, he seemed simply bemused.

Del Solar had told reporters on the eve of the game that there had been a dispute over bonuses before the team left Lima but said the problem had been resolved.

Peru's ultra-cautious tactics backfired when Walter Ayovi scored from a free kick after only 10 minutes.

Kaviedes scored with a classy finish in the 24th minute after being sent clear by Cristian Benitez, who also set up Mendez for the third goal in the 44th minute.

Ayovi added a fourth in the 48th minute after Peru lost possession in defence and Mendez scored his second in the 62nd minute with what appeared to be an attempted cross which caught Diego Penny offguard.

Farfan, who came on in the second-half, set up a consolation for Andres Mendoza, another substitute, in the 86th minute.

REUTERS TB BST0544

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