A stale and tense first half and a more inspired second half – where Luiz Adriano showed the way taking full advantage of his only opportunity on the night – saw Palmeiras through to the Brazil Cup finals for the fifth time in history. Rony closed the scorecard, firmly heading a rebound into the net, assisted by Mayke. Grêmio will be our opponent: the Porto Alegre team last week beat São Paulo 1-0 at home and then managed a goalless draw away to advance to the finals, which will be played in February, Palmeiras looking to bag the club’s fourth Brazil Cup title.
Weverton; Marcos Rocha, Luan, Gustavo Gómez and Viña; Danilo, Gabriel Menino (Patrick de Paula) and Raphael Veiga (Lucas Lima); Rony, Willian (Scarpa) and Luiz Adriano (Mayke).
Gustavo Gómez and Lucas Lima received yellow cards.
Our players were in control for most of the game, although the performance was subpar, especially in the first half. Volume of play increased in the second half, much due to Lima, Scarpa and de Paula improving mobility on the midfield. In the end, the result was fair: América were never close to actually threaten Palmeiras and Weverton had a relatively calm night under the crossbar.
The squad is tired, worn down, still felling the covid effects and, in particular, the very tight playing schedule. There is simply no time for training, barely time for rest. Palmeiras is the only team still alive in all three competitions – Brazilian League, Brazil Cup and Libertadores – and it’s taking a toll.
Off for tonight, of course!
Palmeiras wrapped up this year’s League participation with last Sunday’s home win against Red Bull Bragantino, 1-0. Next league game is only on 9 January, away against Sport. Before that, a real treat: on 5 January, the first leg of the Libertadores semifinals, away, against River Plate of Argentine. This is a totally different beast, a totally different level of intensity. Buckle up. That’s all we’re saying.
Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!
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by Augusto Anteghini Oazi
*Here at Anything Palmeiras, we love football. We love Palmeiras. We are always keen to see Palmeiras play, and keen to write about it for you. But we’re against the return of football in a country that still hasn’t controlled the coronavirus pandemic. We express our deepest sympathy to the families whose loved ones have been taken by the disease.