23:33 GMT15 July 2020
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    Plane With Brazilian Football Team on Board Crashes in Colombia (22)

    Chapecoense team members who for the first time in the history of the football club had qualified to play in the international Copa Sudamericana competition were heading to Colombia to the final against Atletico Nacional when their plane went down in northwestern Colombia.

    The football team was travelling to Columbia to take part in the match that was supposed to be the greatest success in its history, a game that will never take place.

    "It was a shock," Gustavo Ribeiro, an award-winning Brazilian journalist from Plus-Fifty-Five information platform, told Radio Sputnik. "The Chapecoense was a club that people from all over the country grew fond of."

    Chapecoense is a classical example of a "Cinderella story," Ribeiro said. The football club, founded in 1973, had long remained in the shadow of other Brazilian football teams. In 2009, the club played at in the fourth league, but after several wins experienced a rapid rise to the country's top league in 2014.

    The team made its first debut at the international level last year, making it to the Copa Sudamericana quarterfinals. Five days ago, the club celebrated its success having reached the finals of this tournament, on the way to which they beat prominent football teams including San Lorenzo and Independiente from Argentina.

    However, the fairy tale dreams of Brazilian football players ended in tragedy. Heartbreaking details about the private lives are now emerging from Brazil.

    For instance, it became known that one of the dead players, 22-year Thiaguinho, discovered he was going to be a father for the first time just several days before the tragedy, Brazilian sports Globo Esporte reported. The family of the young man has released the video in which he is seen to be celebrating the good news with his friends.

    Another heartbreaking story is the one of the team's goalkeeper Marcos Danilo who made the last phone call to his wife just moments before he died. Danilo was one of the seven people who was found alive after the catastrophe and was rushed to a hospital for treatment. The 31-year-old called his wife lying in a hospital bad just a few moments before he was claimed to have died from multiple injuries. At the same time, some media, like ESP, say that Danilo could still be alive, citing the words of his mother.


    Following the crash, Colombian football club Atletico Nacional requested to award the Copa Sudamericana winner's title to the Chapecoense.

    The incident with airplane occurred while the aircraft was en route from Santa Cruz in Bolivia to the Colombian city of Medellín.

    While some media are saying the crash was caused by fuel shortage, other reports suggest there was an electrical failure. The flight, operated by Bolivian charter airline — Lamia — had nine crew members and 72 passengers aboard, including the Brazilian football.

    "Almost the entire team was on board of the plane," Ribeiro said.

    According to preliminary data, five people survived in the crash, while 76 died. So far, there are two crash survivors among Chapecoense players — Alan Ruschel and Jakson Folman.

    Plane With Brazilian Football Team on Board Crashes in Colombia (22)


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