The Copa Libertadores continue to have a Brazilian accent. Fluminense defeated Olimpia 3-1 at home on Thursday to become the third Brazilian team to reach the semi-finals of the regional tournament.
The Rio de Janeiro team will meet Internacional de Porto Alegre in the preliminary round of the final to be played on November 4 at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro. The other key will see Palmeiras face off against Boca Juniors.
Fluminense, the only semi-finalist not to have won the Libertadores trophy, extended Brazil’s hegemony in the competition by placing three in the top four for the third straight season. In addition, the Brazilian teams add the last four titles through Flamengo and Palmeiras.
After winning 2-0 in their home country the week before, Fernando Diniz’s side, interim coach of Brazil, were able to extend their lead at the Defensores del Chaco de Asunción.
In the 23rd minute, John Kennedy scored the first goal for the “Tricolor” after taking advantage of an assist from Keno and defeating goalkeeper Juan Espínola.
During the goal celebration, Keno was hit by an object thrown from the stands. The player fell to the ground in pain and the game was suspended for about five minutes.
Olimpia, three-time champions of the competition, did not give up and equalized before the end of the first half with a shot from Facundo Zabala that blocked defender Nino before beating Fabio.
The Paraguayans had several chances to get closer on the scoreboard but suffered a severe setback when Fernando Cardozo was sent off and received a second yellow card after 70 minutes for stopping a Lima counterattack.
At 79, Argentina striker Germán Cano increased the difference by scoring an empty goal after a shot from the post by John Kennedy.
Cano repeated the dose, deciding the tie in added time with his ninth goal to establish himself as the tournament’s top scorer.