Gringo Report: Restrepo starts opener for América de Cali

GUADALAJARA, Mexico — Former US Under-17 goalkeeper Diego Restrepo went the full 90 for América de Cali in his team’s first match of the Colombian season on Wednesday night, a 1-1 tie with Deportivo Pereira.

The 23-year-old Restrepo received a yellow card toward the end of the match for time-wasting, but successfully kept Pereira out with some solid saves in the first half when the pressure was on the Red Devils.

In front of 23,000 fans, Pereira took the lead in the 58th minute, with América bringing the game level five minutes later.

University of Virginia alum Restrepo is by no means guaranteed to retain his starting place for Saturday night’s game against Atlético Nacional. América recently resigned former goalkeeper Julián Viáfara, who could not play on Wednesday because the international transfer had not been ratified by FIFA.

Restrepo was born in Venezuela but spent his early childhood in Colombia. When the ‘keeper was 13, his family moved to Florida.

On the bench for América on Wednesday night was 20-year-old Queens, N.Y.-born ‘keeper Kevin Piedrahita.

Tom Marshall can be reached at tom.marshall.mex@gmail.com