Thursday, July 16, 2009

Copa Libertadores 2009 Final: Estudiantes Wins Cup After 39 Years

Congratulations to the Argentine champions, Estudiantes for a fantastic run to the Copa Libertadores championship win. After a 0-0 draw in La Plata, Argentina last week, Cruzeiro would have been favourites to win the Copa with home advantage. Estudiantes stormed back from a goal down to upset Cruzeiro with goals from Gaston Fernandez and Mauro Boselli.

Gaston "The Cat" Fernandez taps in the equalizer - Image from Reuters

Mauro Boselli seals the win for El Leon - Image from Reuters

With this win, Estudiantes captain, Juan Sebastian Veron has emulated his father's success who led Estudiantes to three previous Cup victories. The Verons are only the second father-son duo to have won the Copa Libertadores, joining Jorge Goncalves and father Nestor who both won a title with Uruguayan club Penarol.

Juan Sebastian Veron "La Brujita" lifts the Cup - Image from Reuters

Seba Veron was voted Man of the Match for his outstanding performance in the final - he was central to both Estudiantes' goals. His leadership kept Estudiantes pushing hard for the win.

These were what the players and managers have to say after the match,

From ESPNSTAR.com,

Estudiantes boss, Alejandro Sabella said, "The first thing you need to worry about when you go behind is to not lose your shape, especially against Brazilian teams. We suffered a little bit, but we equalised. Psychologically, that goal was too bad for them, but too good for us. All the players deserve a statue."

Forward Jose Luis Calderon, said: "We deserve to be champions. We won like Estudiantes play - we were tough, we ran hard and we played good football. When things are well at a club, like in a family, this is what you get. This is the most beautiful thing I have experienced in football because I'm an Estudiantes fan."

"I have no words," Cruzeiro keeper, Fabio said. "Only Jesus Christ can console us. He knows everything. The opponents deserved to win."

Cruzeiro forward Ramires, who is now heading to Benfica, added: "I don't know what to say. This is a sad, disappointing moment for all of us. It's time to hold our heads up."

From Eurosport UK,
Cruzeiro coach Adilson Baptista told a news conference: "We played better in the second half, went 1-0 up and could have got a second. Then we concended goals through a loss of concentration in defence and a dead ball play."
"Let them enjoy this -- it's for the fans. It's unique," former Lazio and Manchester United midfielder Veron told Fox Sports.
"We have to raise a monument to all the players," said coach Alex Sabella. "Veron is the greatest ever Estudiantes player."
"This is what one dreams of," said Mauro Boselli who is the tournament's top scorer with eight goals. "It was our objective and we achieved it."
From SI.com,
"It took a lot of heart,'' Veron said as the Argentine fans chanted his name. "It was incredible.''

"We were able to silence more than 60,000 people,'' Estudiantes defender Christian Cellay said. "That was really incredible. It's hard to believe we did it.''
From FOXSports.com,

Estudiantes coach Alejandro Sabella praised the veteran midfielder and said he was the main reason for the team's victory. "It was a great match by Veron," Sabella said. "He was coming off an injury and we knew he was going to keep improving and play even better today."

Cruzeiro coach Adilson Batista also was quick to show his appreciation for the midfielder's performance. "It was a pleasure to see a player like Veron perform like he did," Batista said. "He is very intelligent tactically."

Estudiantes players savouring the win - Image from Reuters

Estudiantes will now represent South America in the FIFA Club World Cup competition at the end of this year. Definitely will be an interesting Estudiantes-Barcelona final - mouthwatering indeed.



5 comments:

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