For anyone not a supporter of Palmeiras or Santos, the final was disappointing. For palmeirenses and santistas, it was a hard fought battle, with teams not giving away an inch of space, tactically committed to not committing mistakes and looking for that single opportunity to score a winner. Palmeiras executed their gameplan perfectly, fully neutralizing Santos’ fixed stars Soteldo and Marinho. Slowly advancing positions, creating half a chance here, another there, biding their time.
Suddenly, a bolt sent by the football Gods struck the head of Breno Lopes; heading a ball crossed by Rony in the ninth minute of stoppage time of the second half, we were blessed with the sole goal of the final and Palmeiras’ second title of the Libertadores Cup in history.
Weverton; Marcos Rocha, Luan, Gustavo Gómez and Viña; Danilo, Gabriel Menino (Breno Lopes), Zé Rafael (Patrick de Paula) and Raphael Veiga (Alan Empereur); Rony (Felipe Melo) and Luiz Adriano.
Gustavo Gómez, Viña, Marcos Rocha and Breno Lopes received yellow cards.
Seven years from now, Brazilian schools will be flooded with children named after Breno Lopes. His transfer was announced out of the blue and supporters were clearly doubtful about a player coming from the second division. His initial performance was far below expected, with too many goals missed, but the one that he did score – only his second for Palmeiras so far – was the most important of the century.
Was it really necessary to make us go through all this drama? After the thrilling night against River Plate, millions of palmeirenses hearts were tested again. What an incredible moment!
CONMEBOL and the sponsors of the Libertadores Cup starred an spectacle of nonsense allowing seven thousand guests in the stadium. To make things even more absurd, instead of spreading them all over the huge Maracanã, they were crowded in a single sector. Needless to say most of them weren’t wearing masks.
Some say Palmeiras will play tomorrow, Tuesday 2nd, against Botafogo for the Brazilian League. Others are solely anticipating the FIFA Club World Cup debut on the 7th, against Tigres (Mexico) or Ulsan Hyundai (South Korea).
Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!
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by Augusto Anteghini Oazi & Kristian Bengtson
*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.