Atletico Nacional want Chapecoense named Copa Sudamericana champions after Colombia plane crash

  • 30/11/2016
  • By Shannon Redstall
Fans celebrate Atletico Nacional making it to the final last week (Getty)

The team set to play the ill-fated Chapecoense football team in the final of Copa Sudamericana this week has asked for the opposing team to be awarded the championship posthumously.

Seventy-one people were killed when a charter plane carrying players, coaches, support staff and journalists crashed near the Colombian city of Medellin on Tuesday.

The pilot had reported electrical problems and declared an emergency minutes earlier as it neared its destination, Medellin airport officials said.

In a statement on their website Atletico National said the pain overwhelms their hearts.

"The accident of our Chapecoense Soccer brothers will mark us for life and already leave an indelible mark in the Latin American and world football."

The team went on to ask CONMEBOL, the South American Football confederation to put aside the competitiveness and cancel the last round of the tournament.

"Atletico Nacional invites Conmebol to the title of the Copa Sudamericana be delivered to the Associacao Chapecoense de Futebol as honorary laurel his great loss and posthumous tribute to the victims of the fatal accident that mourns our sport.

"For our part, and forever, Chapecoense Champion of the Copa Sudamericana 2016."

It was the first time the small club from Chapeco had reached the final of a major South American club competition but they were underdogs against a club going for a rare double after winning the Copa Libertadores in July.

The President of the South American Football Confederation has travelled to Medellin to support families of the victims and the injured in the plane crash.

CONMEBOL has called off all games and other activities until further notice.


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