Flamengo fans create epic scenes in Rio as they celebrate historic Copa Libertadores win

Flamengo made history on Saturday as they won their second Copa Libertadores in a thrilling finish against River Plate.

Brazil’s most popular club last won the competition back in 1981 with a team built around legendary playmaker Zico.

They’d then famously go on to beat European Champions Liverpool 4-1 in the Intercontinental Cup.

And the two may well meet against in the Club World Cup after Saturday’s extraordinary finish.

River, aiming for back-to-back Copa Libertadores titles, led after a 14th-minute goal from Rafael Santos Borre.

And they appeared to be heading for the trophy until Gabriel ‘Gabigol’ Barbosa equalised in the 89th minute.

Then Gabigol wrote himself into South American football history as he bagged a winner in the 92nd minute win the trophy for Flamengo.

There was time for more drama, however, as Exequiel Palacios and match-winner Barbosa were sent off before the final whistle.

But Gabigol won’t care, manager Jorge Jesus won’t care, and the Flamengo fans won’t care – they’re South American champions.

And we saw exactly what it meant to fans as they filled the streets of Rio on Sunday.

Fans were beginning to swarm over the city even while the players were still at the airport, as you can see below:

And by the time the players had made their own way to the city centre, the fans had completely taken over:

There’s nothing quite like the passion of South American fans, is there?

They’ll now turn their attention to the Club World Cup next month, of course. Flamengo will be in the semi-final, where they’ll meet either Asian champions Al-Hilal or African champions ES Tunis.

Their eyes will firmly be on that final, though, where they may well meet Liverpool again, 38 years later.

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