Blind Football: Brazil wins the fifth American title in Santiago 2023
Date: November 26, 2023
Category: Blind football
The Brazil men’s Blind Football national team is the American champion for the fifth time after defeating Colombia in the final of the Para PanAmerican Games – Santiago 2023. Since the first edition of this competition – Rio de Janeiro 2007 – there has been no other champion in history!
The match started with both teams studying each other and not taking so many risks. After all, there was a gold medal at stake and the continental title.
That is why the first goal came only near halftime. Nonato was down on the pitch, with the right to a free-kick. In a studied play, the Brazilian head coach, Fábio Vasconcelos, required a substitution and took out Nonato and put Ricardinho in his place, exactly to shoot on goal and score.
In the beginning of the second half, a great save by the Brazilian goalkeeper, Luan, to the short-range shot from Jhon Eider Gonzalez put the green and yellow team on high alert. The 1-0 score was too short for these kinds of easy-going plays so close to the goal. Nevertheless, the score remain unchanged until the final whistle and Brazil celebrated one more achievement in its already long list of titles and trophies.
At the end of the match, Ricardinho spoke about his tough period of injury that kept him away from the World Championship in the 2023 IBSA World Games in Birmingham and the predictions that put Brazil on a downward slide.
“We are the usual team regarding what some are saying about our performance and our results. We prove that it is all wrong. For me, I just feel thankful for being part of this team and for being blessed with this goal that gave us the title. It has been a difficult year—six months away—that took my presence in the World Championship, and that is very frustrating for any player. I was at home following at a distance, and I have only spent one week training together with the group. That didn’t stop me from playing all the matches and giving help to my colleagues. God gave me strength because there are some things that we can’t even explain. For the record and history, there will be only this goal to tell and the story behind it”.
In the bronze medal match, the current world champion, Argentina, defeated the host national team of Chile with two goals from Maximiliano Espinillo, the star of the ‘Los Murciélagos’ (the bats) squad. The goals were scored in the first half and in the second half.
In the definition of 5th place, Mexico and Peru had to go to a penalty shoot-out to decide the winner. Francisco Rangel was the first to shoot on goal and the only one to score. All the rest of the players missed their shots, giving the Mexican team the victory.
Mexico vs Peru: 0-0 (1-0)
Argentina vs Chile: 2-0
Brazil vs Colombia: 1-0
1st – Brazil
2nd – Colombia
3rd – Argentina
4th – Chile
5th – Mexico
6th – Peru