Report: Australia 1-2 Ecuador

Towering central defender William Pacho scored the winner on his debut as Ecuador beat Australia 2-1 Tuesday to hand new coach Felix Sanchez his first victory since taking over.

The visitors went behind to a 16th-minute strike from Brandon Borello in front of 27,000 fans in Melbourne, who witnessed a physical and high-octane friendly.

But they bounced back in a dominant second half, with Brighton left back Pervis Estupinan converting a penalty before Antwerp’s Pacho headed home from a corner.

It was a rousing response after Australia beat the South Americans 3-1 in Sydney last week and a first win for Spaniard Sanchez, who replaced Argentine Gustavo Alfaro this month.

Their victory was marred by Angelo Preciado, who plays for Belgium side Genk, being stretchered off late in the game.

“I was stoked, of course, first goal for Australia and on home soil,” said Western Sydney Wanderers’ Borello. “It was fiery, they won a lot of second balls… but we created chances and I think there were a lot of positives.”

Both sides rung the changes from Sydney, with only five Australians surviving.

Adelaide United goalkeeper Joe Gauci, seen as a long-term successor to veteran Mat Ryan, was handed a debut while Bailey Wright replaced Leicester City’s Harry Souttar, who was sent back to England early with a minor ankle injury.

Ecuador also shuffled the pack but retained Brighton pair Estupinan and Moises Caicedo, who is reportedly being chased by Arsenal.

Their dangerous striker Kevin Rodriquez went close in the opening minutes but it was Australia who struck first.

Craig Goodwin unleashed a 25-yard rocket that crashed off the post straight to Borello, who crisply finished for his first international goal.

Gauci denied Rodriquez again with a fine save at the other end.

Rodriquez earned a penalty five minutes into the second half when his speed and skill proved too much for Australian defender Thomas Deng, who brought him down, with skipper Estupinan stepping forward to convert from the spot.

Ecuador took charge as Australia tired and their pressure paid off in the 65th minute when Junior Sornoza’s curling corner was met by the giant Pacho, who angled his header past the keeper.