Sampaoli unhappy with Chile's sloppy attack

Jorge Sampaoli hailed Chile's defensive effort against Ecuador but conceded his side needs to improve up front.

Chile coach Jorge Sampaoli blamed a lack of precision for his side's inability to score in the first half against Ecuador on Thursday.

Sampaoli's men opened the 2015 Copa America with a 2-0 victory but had to wait until the final half-hour to breach Ecuador's defence in Santiago.

The tournament hosts lined up in a 3-4-3 formation with Arturo Vidal and Jorge Valdivia slightly withdrawn behind lead striker Alexis Sanchez, but Sampaoli conceded his plan did not work in the early period of the first half.

"We planned a match like Brazil, to have offensive players such as Valdivia and Vidal getting behind the defenders," the coach said after the match.

"The game plan in the first 25 minutes - not finding the goal the team was declining and became a little imprecise, and did not recover their organization after losing possession."

Vidal would eventually give Chile the lead from the penalty spot in the 67th minute, while half-time substitute Eduardo Vargas completed the victory with six minutes remaining.

Although Chile's efforts in the forward third left a little to be desired, according to Sampaoli, the 55-year-old was pleased with how they defended.

"Playing against Enner Valencia or against Jefferson Montero or Miller Bolanos is always a risk because of the speed they have, in addition to the diagonals of Fidel Martinez or [Renato] Ibarra, who came on in the second half," Sampaoli said.

"I think we did a very good game in the defensive line as a team."

Sampaoli's side face Mexico next on Monday in Chile's capital.