Internacional makes Copa Libertadores final
Brazilian club Internacional reached the final of Latin
America’s top club competition despite losing 2-1 at Sao Paulo in
the semifinals of the Copa Libertadores on Thursday.
Alecsandro equalized for Inter in the 52nd minute after Alex
Silva had given Sao Paulo a 31st minute lead. Ricardo Oliveira put
Sao Paulo back in front in the 54th, but Internacional progressed
on away goals after a 1-0 win in the first leg.
Internacional will play Mexican club Guadalajara in the
The win also guarantees Internacional a place in the Club World
Cup to be played in December against the other continental
champions. Mexican clubs are part of the north and central American
confederation and cannot represent South America in the Club World
Sao Paulo, aiming to overturn the one-goal deficit from the
first leg, dominated the early exchanges in front of more than
60,000 fans at the Morumbi stadium.
Hernanes had the first opportunity, dragging a long-range shot
wide of the post in the 16th minute.
Internacional responded with a low shot from Taison from outside
the area that forced a diving save from Sao Paulo goalkeeper
Rogerio Ceni in the 23rd minute.
Silva almost connected with a free kick from Hernanes to the
back post a minute later, before Sao Paulo opened the scoring from
another set piece.
Hernanes floated a deep free kick into the box which goalkeeper
Renan fumbled under no pressure, allowing Silva to head over the
line from a tight angle.
Inter drew level when Alecsandro diverted Andres D’Alessandro’s
free kick into the net with his heel in the second half for a
crucial away goal.
Oliveira collected a pass in the box and turned to beat Renan
with a low shot two minutes later, but the away goal meant Sao
Paulo still needed to score again to make the final.
Tinga had a chance to secure it for Inter, but his shot from six
yards (meters) was blocked by Jean in the 64th minute.
Hernanes and Marlos both shot just over the crossbar in the
final 15 minutes, but Inter held on for the aggregate win despite
midfielder Tinga receiving a red card in the 79th minute.
Lineups: Sao Paulo: Rogerio Ceni, Cleber Santana (Marlos 72),
Miranda, Alex Silva, Junior Cesar, Rodrigo Souto (Marcelinho 87),
Jean, Hernanes, Fernandao, Dagoberto (Fernando 80), Ricardo
Internacional: Renan, Nei, Bolivar, Indio, Kleber, Sandro, Pablo
Guinazu, Andres D’Alessandro (Giuliano 78), Tinga, Taison (Wilson
Mathias 89), Alecsandro.