Atletico earn Libertadores final berth
Belo Horizonte (Brazil): Ronaldinho`s Atletico Mineiro progressed to the Copa Libertadores final with a dramatic 3-2 penalty shootout victory over Newell`s Old Boys.
Goalkeeper Victor completed a remarkable comeback by the Brazilian outfit Wednesday by saving the final spot-kick from former Liverpool winger Maxi Rodriguez. Earlier, Bernard and Guilherme netted each side of halftime at the Independencia to tie the scores on aggregate after the Argentine side`s 2-0 victory in last week`s first leg.
Atletico will meet Paraguay`s Olimpia in the final of Latin America`s most coveted club competition over two legs July 17 and 24. Two-time FIFA World Player of the Year Ronaldinho, who coolly converted Atletico`s final penalty kick, could not hide his emotion after the match.
"We are ecstatic. It`s an amazing feeling. We are all conscious of the fact that we can make history. It is the first time in the club`s history that we have made the final of this competition. It`s a happiness I can`t explain. This is what motivates me to play; to keep winning titles that I haven`t won. I still feel like a kid," the 33-year-old said.
"We are going to be motivated and prepared for the final. This result tonight is not just for the players but for the entire club. There are people who work in the kitchen, cleaners and backroom staff that have been here for many years and never seen the club make it this far. We want to make history."
Reported Chelsea target Bernard struck in just the third minute when he ran onto a precise Ronaldinho pass before sliding the ball between the legs of goalkeeper Nahuel Guzman. The game stopped for 10 minutes during the second half due to a lighting failure and upon resumption, Atletico coach Cuca gambled by replacing Bernard with Guilherme.
The move reaped immediate rewards. The 24-year-old equalised moments after being introduced with an unstoppable shot from outside the area after a poor Milton Casco clearance. Tension reached a crescendo during the penalty shootout when missed attempts from Atletico`s Jo and Richarlyson were followed by wayward shots from Casco and Rinaldo Cruzado.
Ronaldinho then calmly fired into the bottom right corner before Victor dived left to deny Rodriguez.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- Zee Media exclusive chat with 'Welcome to Karachi' cast
- Reservation issue: Police register case against Bainsla, 20 others
- Zee Media exclusive interview with Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar
- UP Minister allegedly threatens, abuses Gonda businessman
- Manali: Heavy corruption found in environmental taxes
- UP: Jammu-bound Muri Express derails in Kaushambi
- Five unmanned parachutes spotted over Mumbai airport
- Aapke Sitare: Astro prediction for May 24, 2015
- Watch: Fast N Facts @ 7:30pm
- Dawood's intercepted phone calls prove yet again he is in Pakistan
- One year of Modi govt: How satisfied is the common man?
- Jaipur girl Mini Rajpal wins Miss India Deaf 2015!
- CBSE Board Class 12th Exam Results 2015 declared
- Mumbai architecture creates double decker bus from scrap!
- One year of Modi govt: How satisfied is the common man? Part-2
- IPL 2015 Final: MI vs CSK - As it happened...
- Heatwave continues in North India; death toll in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana more than 400
- IPL 2015 final: Mumbai Indians thrash Chennai Super Kings by 41 runs to lift second title
- Heatwave claims over 550 lives so far, Delhi saw hottest day
- Check cbseresults.nic.in for CBSE Class 12 result 2015
- Mathura rally: PM Modi slams 'corrupt' UPA regime, lauds NDA govt's efforts in past one year
- CBSE Class 12 results out: Here's how you can check
- PM Narendra Modi's Mathura rally: As it happened
- Police register case against Bainsla, 20 others as Gujjar agitation continues
- CBSE Board 12th XII Results 2015: Cbse.nic.in & cbseresults.nic.in Class 12th XII Exam Results 2015 to be announced today at 12 Noon