Adrian Mariappa’s Jamaica got their Copa America preparations off to the perfect start by shocking current holders Chile 2-1 in a friendly in Vina del Mar on Saturday night.
The Palace defender captained his side to their first ever victory against a team ranked inside the world’s top three on their own patch as Winfried Schafer’s men picked up a huge scalp.
Clayton Donaldson netted for the Reggae Boyz in the 36th minute before Joel Grant doubled the lead eight minutes after half-time, but there was to be a nervy ending as Nicolas Castillo pulled one back on 82 minutes but Jamaica held on.
That will give Mariappa’s side – who were missing Leicester City captain Wes Morgan from their line-up – a massive fillip going into the centennial edition of the Copa America which kicks off on the weekend, with Jamaica facing Venezuela in their opening group game on Sunday.
On Friday Emmanuel Adebayor started for Togo in their friendly against Zambia which saw the Palace’s striker’s side win 1-0 thanks to Mathieu Dossevi’s 22nd minute strike. The match was preparation for Togo’s 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Liberia on Sunday.
Also readying themselves for similar action over the weekend was Pape Souare who played 81 minutes of Senegal’s 2-0 win against Rwanda. Stoke City striker Mame Biram Diouf opened the scoring before Younousse Sankharé added a second, giving Souare’s nation a comfortable victory ahead of their potentially qualification-sealing encounter against Burundi on Friday.
Meanwhile Bakary Sako sat out Mali’s 1-0 defeat to Nigeria, and remains questionable as to whether he’ll play a part in their group game against South Sudan later this week.