Tuesday, July 2, 2013

2 July 2008 - The Team That Refused To Quit

On 2 July 2008, Quito won the Copa Libertadores on penalties over Fluminense, 5-5 (3-1).

It was the first time in the final for both teams. Quito hosted the first leg at the Estadio Casa Blanca on 25 June and jumped out to an early lead when forward Claudio Bieler scored in the second minute. Midfielder Darío Conca equalized for Fluminense ten minutes later, but Quito then scored three straight goals (29', 34', 45') to lead 4-1 at the break. A goal from Fluminense's Thiago Neves in the 52nd minute set the final margin at 4-2.

The second leg, played at the Maracaña, started by following a similar pattern. Quito again took an early lead with a goal in the sixth minute and Fluminense again equalized in the 12th. But unlike the previous match,  Fluminense were the ones to score three unanswered goals, with additional strikes in the 28th and 56th minutes. The match ended 3-1 at the end of regulation, for an aggregate score of 5-5.

Because the tournament did not consider away goals, the match went to extra time and, when nobody scored, to a penalty shootout. There, Quito goalkeeper José Francisco Cevallos blocked three of four shots, while his teammates converted three of their four kicks to win the shootout, 3-1.

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