Atletico Mineiro win first Libertadores title

Belo Horizonte: Brazil`s Atletico Mineiro secured their first Copa Libertadores title with a pulsating 4-3 penalty-shootout victory over Paraguay`s Olimpia at the Mineirao stadium here.

Herminio Miranda and Matias Gimenez both missed spot-kicks for the visitors while Leonardo Silva, Jo, Guilherme and Alecsandro converted for Atletico after the scores were tied 2-2 at the end of extra time Wednesday, reports Xinhua.

Earlier, former Manchester City forward Jo and defender Silva both struck second-half goals to cancel out Olimpia`s 2-0 lead in the first leg.

Jo`s lunging 46th-minute shot came after Olimpia`s defence failed to clear a tame Rosinei cross.

Olimpia`s Julio Manzur was sent off in the 84th minute after a second yellow card for a tackle on Alecsandro.

The home side capitalised two minutes later when Silva met Bernard`s cross at the far post with a looping header.

"I`m numb," Atletico coach Cuca said after the match. "There is so much emotion because we have been under a lot of pressure.

"People have said that I`ve had bad luck in the past, that this club has bad luck. But we`ve now changed all of that."

Victor, who capped a fine performance by saving Olimpia`s first penalty shootout attempt from Miranda with his left boot, dedicated the victory to Atletico`s fans.

"I`m crying tears of joy," he said. "Now we have to celebrate and let the fans enjoy it. They deserve this more than anyone."


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