The Peruvian top level was hardly a league – 30 teams played in it, divided into 4 regional groups, the Metropolitan group twice bigger than the provincial groups. In the first phase the bottom 9 teams finished – the last 3 in the Metropolitan group and the last 2 in every regional groups. What happened next to these teams? Hard to tell… if not all, at least most of them played again top level football in the next season. But they were out early in 1986. After the first phase the championship split in two streams – the Regional Tournament and the Descentralised Tournament. The teams involved were pretty much the same in both tournaments, though – only the formulas were slightly different and the the champions of each played a final between themselves for the Peruvian title.
Let start with the early eliminated clubs:
The last in the Metropolitan group were:
Juventud La Joya (Chancay) – 10th with 15 points,
Guardia Republicana (Lima) – 11th with 15 points, and
CNI – Colegio Nacional (Iquitos) – 12th with 12 points.
From the Northern group eliminated were:
Carlos Manucci (Trujillo) – 5th with 12 points and Atletico Torino (Talara) – 6th with 9 points.
Out from the Central group were: Leon (Huanuco) – 5th with 10 points and
Deportivo Junin (Huancayo) – 6th with 9 points.
The last in the Southern group were:
Mariscal Nieto (Ilo) – 5th with 10 points and Atletico Huracan (Moquegua) – 6th with 8 points.
The rest had different fate, depending on the group final tables: the top 4 from Metropolitan group and the top 2 in the other three groups qualified to the next stage of both the Regional and the Descentralised tournaments. The next 2 in the Metroplitan group and the 3rd-placed in the other groups qualified to the next stage of the Descentralised tournament. The 7th and the 8th in the Metropolitan group and the 4th-placed in the other groups went to qualification play-offs and the winners qualified to the next stage of the Descentralised tournament. Meantime there was preliminary round for the Regional tournament and three teams were eliminated in it. The winners plus 5 lucky ones went to quarterfinals and so on until the final.
In the preliminary round Hungaruitos Agustinos eliminated Asociacion Deportiva (Tarma) 2-0 and Deportivo Municipal – Cienciano (Cusco) 4-0. The third match was dramatic and eventually decisive for the whole season. At first Coronel Bolognesi (Tacna) won over San Agustin 1-0, but the losers complained to the Federation, the result was tripped, the match replayed and now San Agustin prevailed 1-0.
Rightly or wrongly, Coronel Bolognesi was out.
In the quarterfinals only one match ended with goals and decisive results:
Deportivo Pucallpa lost 0-3 to the same problematic San Agustin.
All other games ended 0-0 and were decided by penalty shoot-outs. Alianza prevailed over Hungaritos Agustinos 4-2, Deportivo Municipal over Melgar FBC 4-3, and Univeridad Tecnica over Sporting Cristal 3-2.
It was a bit strange to see Sporting Cristal out so early, but nobody is strong forever. Standing from left: Roberto Arrelucea, Ruben Diaz, Cesar Rios, Pedro Chinchay, Roberto Rojas, Humberto Valdettaro. First row: David Zuloaga, Juan Jose Ore, Angel Barrios, Julio Cesar Anton, Genaro Neyra.
No goals were scored in the semifinals at all and both matches ended with penalty shoot-outs.
Universidad Tecnica (Cajamarca) lost to Alianza 3-4 and Deportivo Municipal (Lima) to San Agustin 3-4.
Thus, the final was played between Alianza (Lima) and San Agustin (Lima). The match ended 1-1 and San Agustin won the penalty shoot-out 3-1.
The winners of Regional tournament – standing from left: Jaime Duarte, Martin Yupanqui, Carlos Castro, Segundo Barreda, ?, Victor Alcazar. First row: Raul Mejia, Roberto Martinez, Jose Pajuelo, Coronado, Rigoberto Montoya. San Agustin qualified to the championship final.
Descentralised tournament. The teams failing to qualify to it continued the season in so-called Intermediary Division with Second Division teams for next season promotion. That meant 12 teams, technically for 11 spots, for the winner of Copa Peru was promoted as well. The 18 which qualified were divided into 3 groups of 6 teams each and the top 2 of every group went to the final stage of the tournament.
Coronel Bolognesi (Tacna) – 6th. Standing from left: Freddy Berlanga, Mario Cisterna, ‘Cacique’ Bustamante, Carlos ‘Tito’ Reyna, Santos Bojorquez, Juan Ayala. First row: Martinez, Pedro Barrionuovo, Juan Jose Ore, Javier Ugaz, Marco Echegaray.
Asociacion Deportiva (Tarma) – 5th,
Juventud La Palma (Huacho) – 4th,
Universitario de Deportes (Lima) – 3rd,
Universidad Tecnica – 2nd, and Alianza – 1st.
Defensor ANDA (Ayacuchu) – 6th, Hungaritos Agustinos (Iquitos) – 5th,
Union Minas (Cerro de Pasco) – 4th,
Melgar FBC (Arequipa) – 3rd, San Agustin – 2nd, and Deportivo Municipal – 1st.
Deportivo Pucallpa (Pucallpa) – 6th, Cienciano (Cusco) – 5th,
Octavio Espinosa (Ica) – 4th. Standing from left: N.AGUIRRE,CESAR ORE,W.VASQUEZ,JUAN VIDALES,FELIX RUBIANES,A.CORNEJO. First row:JULIO JIMENEZ,EDILBERTO FUENTES,OCTAVIO VIDALES,ROBERTO ASSERETO,DOMINGO FARFAN.
Atletico Grau (Piura) – 3rd, Sport Boys – 2nd, and Sporting Cristal – 1st.
The final group of 6: each team played once against the rest.
Universidad Tecnica (Cajamarca) finished last with 1 point.
Sporting Cristal (Lima) – 5th with 4 points.
Sport Boys (Callao) – 4th with 5 points.
Deportivo Municipal (Lima) – 3rd with 5 points. Standing from left: Jorge Ramírez, José Aguayo, Oscar Bravo, Simic, Lizandro Navarro, Luis Advíncula. Crouching: Morán, Luis Flores, Alberto Eugenio, Alberto Castillo, Víctor Gutiérrez.
San Agustin – 2nd with 6 points,
and Alianza on top with 9 points. Alianza won the Descentralised tournament and reached the final for the season.
Which was one more replay between Alianza (Lima) and San Agustin (Lima), but San Agustin prevailed 1-0 in the regular time.
Alianza (Lima) lost and naturally was not happy, but they had many trophies anyway. Standing from left: Cesar Espino, Gino Pena, Daniel Reyes, Tomas Farfan, Jose Gonzales Ganoza, Wilmar Valencia. Crouching: Eugenio La Rosa, Johnny Watson, Juan Illescas, Jose Casanova, Luis Escobar.
Fantastic season for San Agustin (Lima) – they won the Peruvian championship for the first time! Strong the whole year too, so it was well deserved success. Standing from left: Jaime Duarte, Martin Yupanqui, Segundo Barreda, Rigoberto Montoya, Carlos Castro, Victor Alcazar. First row: Raul Mejia, Jose Ziani, Jose Pajuelo, Roberto Martinez, Montesinos.
The triumph of San Agustin was surprising, for it was young club with unsettled past – it was formed in 1970 with the name Club San Francisco, later changed to Huracan San Isidro, and finally to San Agustin. The last change came because of sponsorship – Colegio San Agustin took over the club and renamed it after itself. Of course, they never won anything so far and the changes suggest struggling with both identity and financial security, but at last everything was fine. For the moment, anyway. The decline of Peruvian football at the time, affecting the big clubs, also helped, but such a triumph cannot be dismissed just as taking advantage of the weakness of traditional powers. It was ambitious and enthusiastic season, but San Agustin was not a big club and had no chance of becoming one in Lima. Repeated success was unlikely, so it was pretty much one-time affair, yet, a wonderful victory of the underdog.