Brazil beat Colombia in Chapecoense benefit match

Rio de Janeiro, Jan 26 (IANS) Palmeiras forward Dudu scored a second-half goal as Brazil defeated Colombia 1-0 in a friendly to raise money for the families of the victims of the Chapecoense air disaster.

Before the match on Wednesday, crash survivors Alan Ruschel, Rafael Henzel, Neto and Jakson Follmann were presented with commemorative plaques in an emotional ceremony at the Engenhao stadium here, reports Xinhua news agency.

There was a minute’s applause before kick-off as players from both teams stood arm-in-arm in a show of solidarity.

It was a dour first half, with both teams having few clear scoring chances in Rio’s stifling summer heat.

The hosts finally found a way past Colombia’s defence just after the halftime break. The move started with an inch-perfect Rodriginho through ball that Fagner pulled back into the box just before careering over the byline.

Diego Souza then saw his first-time effort blocked by goalkeeper David Gonzales before Dudu headed in the rebound.

Earlier, the Brazilian football confederation said all of the gate takings would be donated to Chapecoense team families affected by the tragedy in November.

Seventy one people died, including 19 Chapecoense players, when the LaMia plane carrying the Brazilian club’s squad slammed into a hillside near Medellin, Colombia.

The tragedy occurred just two days before Chapecoense were due to play Atletico Nacional in the first leg of the Copa Sudamericana final.

–IANS

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