Flamengo beats Del Valle to win its 1st Recopa Sudamericana

              Gerson of Brazil's Flamengo celebrates scoring his side's second goal against Ecuador's Independiente del Valle during the final match of the Recopa at the Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2020. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Brazil’s Flamengo won the Recopa Sudamericana for the first time Wednesday night, beating Ecuador’s Independiente del Valle 3-0 at the historic Maracanã stadium.

The latest winners of Copa Libertadores had drawn 2-2 in the first leg of the final against the 2019 champions of the Copa Sudamericana.

Flamengo opened the scoring in the 20th minute with its top goal scorer Gabriel Barbosa. Only four minutes later, the Brazilian team was down to 10 men after William Arão was sent off.

The Ecuadorians stepped up the pressure and forced goalkeeper Diego Alves to make several difficult saves. Still, the Brazilians managed to add a second in the 62nd minute with Gerson, to the delight of almost 70,000 fans.

Del Valle quickly noticed its efforts would fall short after striker Alejandro Cabezas was sent off in the 73rd minute.

Gerson added Flamengo’s third two minutes before regular time.