Colombia felt the adulation and tasted victory.
Haiti, playing short on the field and in the stands, earned respect.
Dayro Moreno, Juan Cuadrado and Roger Martinez each scored a goal to lead Colombia, the world’s fourth-ranked men’s soccer team, to a 3-1 exhibition victory over Haiti in front of a crowd of 20,107 fans at Marlins Park.
Haiti, ranked 71st by FIFA, shocked the crowd — almost all of whom were there to support Colombia — by tying the score 1-1 on a goal by Wilde-Donald Guerrier in the 35th minute.
Five minutes later, however, midfielder Max Hilaire was ejected for a second yellow card, forcing Haiti to play a man short for the final 51 minutes.
“That was a big handicap,” said Haiti coach Patrice Neveu, 62, a France native who took over the team last year.
Undermanned on the field, underrated perhaps in the rankings and overwhelmed by the fans who rocked Marlins Park, Haiti was unable to hold off Colombia in the second half.
Both teams used the match to prepare for the 100th anniversary of Copa America, which begins Friday for Colombia against the United States in Santa Clara, California.
Haiti takes on Peru on Saturday in Seattle.
Colombia was without superstar James Rodriguez, the top goal scorer in the 2014 World Cup. Rodriguez was in Milan, Italy, on Saturday night, where his Real Madrid team won the Champions League title.
“When we have our complete team,” Colombia coach Jose Pekerman said, “we will put the finishing touches on our team.”
Pekerman said Rodriguez will join the team on Monday. The coach also defended Rodriguez’s rough second season with Real Madrid.
“He is a dedicated kid,” Pekerman said.
“There have been a lot of false things said about him. He is very professional. We are waiting for him, knowing he will have a great Copa America.”
Rodriguez’s brother-in-law, David Ospina, was in goal for Colombia on Sunday and made several nice stops.
But it was the Colombian offense that was impressive.
Colombia, which is 3-0 this calendar year, beating Bolivia 3-2 and Ecuador 3-1 in World Cup qualifiers, was at its explosive self again on Sunday.
Los Cafeteros took a 1-0 lead in the 13th minute. Cuadrado, dangerous on the right flank, centered the ball to Sebastian Perez, whose shot was tipped in by the flying right leg of Moreno. It was the third goal for Moreno in 28 appearances for Colombia.
Haiti tied the score in the 35th minute on a forceful header by Guerrier, who took a corner kick from Jeff Louis and and placed the ball to the left of Ospina. It was Guerrier’s eighth career goal for Haiti.
Then came the blow for Haiti as Hilaire was ejected after getting his second yellow card of the game.
In actuality, it was Hilaire’s second yellow in an eight-minute span.
And Colombia took advantage in the 53rd minute.
After a Haiti free kick was stopped, Colombia rushed up the field on a counterattack. Moreno fed the ball to his right to Cuadrado, who scored on an angled shot, giving Colombia a 2-1 lead.
The barrage continued in the 72nd minute, when Martinez scored off a centering pass from Guillermo Celis. Martinez and Celis were second-half substitutions.