Colombia entered the game fourth in the qualifying table in the last automatic qualification spot, while Peru had the same number of points but were fifth, in the play-off spot.
As the five final CONMEBOL qualifying games ensued, the positions from second to seventh were undecided.
But late on, with results elsewhere going their way, players knew a 1-1 draw would see both teams progress – Colombia directly and Peru to a play-off.
A loss for either side would have seen Alexis Sanchez’s Chile overtake them – so Falcao took matters into his own hands.
The striker revealed after the game: “We knew what was happening in the other matches, we were playing with (the knowledge of) the other results and in that moment (I tried) to transmit that (to Peru).”
Falcao’s actions have been questioned by hundreds of angry Chile fans with playing for a draw considered to be a form of match-fixing
The former Manchester United marksman can be seen approaching different Peru players with his hand covering his mouth as the clock ran down.
Peru midfielder Tapia also admitted that he discussed the result of the game with Falcao following Peru’s equaliser in the 76th minute.
“In the last five minutes, the Colombians approached us. They knew what the situation was in the other games,” Tapia told Panamericana TV.
“So we managed the game as we needed to… I spoke with Radamel, who told me we were both qualified (as things stood), but it’s football and we play to win.”
Peru now face New Zealand in a two-leg play-off, hoping to make the World Cup for the first time in 36 years.
Peru boss Nolberto Solano dismissed the controversy as “speculation” and said: “We needed to win, them too. What pact?
“Obviously, at the end, we knew what the other results were and you tell yourself, ‘Calm it down a bit, we mustn’t take any risks.’”