Football - Peruvian Striker turns out for old club in 8-minute match

Peruvian striker Jahirsino Baylon was forced to travel 900 km to help his former club Universitario play out the remaining eight minutes of a previously abandoned first division match against Melgar on Wednesday.


Baylon travelled from the north of Peru, where he now plays for Union Comercio, just so the same two line-ups could resume the league match abandoned on July 21 as ordered by the Peruvian Football Federation (FPF).

He did not touch the ball because Universitario agreed he should be immediately substituted so as to avoid the risk of an injury that would be prejudicial to Union Comercio.

The original match in the southern city of Arequipa had been abandoned in the 82nd minute with the score at 2-2 when match officials were attacked by Melgar players and coaching staff after they had a potential winner disallowed for offside.

Melgar coach Franco Navarro was handed a 10-match suspension, later reduced to eight on appeal, for grabbing the offending linesman by the throat.

There were no further goals on Wednesday so the teams shared the points. Universitario are in second place in the standings on 50 points from 29 matches, and Melgar 12th with 33.

The first phase of the 16-team championship ends next weekend after which the teams will be divided into two groups of eight for the second stage.

The division, in keeping with bizarre league formats in Latin America, will be made with the teams finishing in odd-numbered places in the standings going into one group and those with even numbers into the other.

The teams keep the points garnered so far and the winners of the two groups will meet in a two-legged final.

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