Asia

Flamengo 3 Al Hilal 1: Brilliant Bruno Henrique inspires Club World Cup turnaround for Libertadores winners


Bruno
Henrique
ensured
Flamengo
did
not
suffer
a
shock
loss
in
the
Club
World
Cup
semi-finals
as
they
beat
Al
Hilal
3-1

Flamengo
produced
a
second-half
turnaround
to
reach
the
Club
World
Cup
final
with
a
3-1
win
over
Al
Hilal,
keeping
hopes
of
a
meeting
with
Liverpool
alive.

The
Copa
Libertadores
champions went
into
Tuesday’s
clash
in
Doha
as
heavy
favourites
but
were
well
below
par
in
the
first
half,
Salem Al
Dawsari
putting
the
Saudi
Arabian
side
on
possible
course
for
a
shock
victory.

However,
the
AFC
Champions
League
winners
faded
after
the
interval
as
an
instrumental
performance
from
Bruno
Henrique
inspired
a
Flamengo
comeback.

He
teed
up Giorgian
de
Arrascaeta
for
the
equaliser
soon
after
the
restart
and
put
Flamengo
in
front
with
a
thumping
header
12
minutes
from
time,
before
his
cross
made
sure
of
success
when Ali
Hadi
Albulayhi
put
through
his
own
net.

Al
Hilal
then
had
Andre
Carrillo
sent
off
for
a
reckless
challenge,
Flamengo seeing
out
a
win
that
could
set
up
a
rematch
of
their
1981
Intercontinental
Cup
defeat
of
Liverpool,
who
face
Monterrey
on
Wednesday.

Flamengo
were
given
an
early
warning
in
the
16th
minute when
Salem
broke
free
down
the
left
and
forced
a
fine
near-post
save
from
Diego
Alves.
The
ball
broke
to
Bafetimbi
Gomis,
but
the
striker
skied
the
rebound
with
an
open
goal
in
front
of
him.

Jorge
Jesus’
side
did
not
learn
their
lesson
from
that
scare,
however,
and
Salem
beat
Alves
two
minutes
later
with
a
deflected
strike
after
impressive
work
down
the
right
from Mohammed
Al-Burayk.

A
response
never
looked
like
coming
in
a
lacklustre
first
half
from
Flamengo,
but
they
needed
only
three
minutes
of
the
second
to
level
matters
with
a
superbly
worked
team
goal.

Gabriel
Barbosa

the
two-goal
hero
of
their
triumph
in
the
Libertadores
final

played
an
incisive
pass
into
the
box
for
Bruno
Henrique,
who
unselfishly
squared
for De
Arrascaeta
to
tap
in.

Abdullah
Al-Mayoof’s
goal
was
rarely
threatened
thereafter,
but
Flamengo
found
the
killer
ball
in
the
78th-minute
as
Rafinha’s
excellent
right-wing
cross
was
emphatically
turned
home
by
Bruno
Henrique,
who
was
celebrating
again
four
minutes
later.

Albulayhi
could
do
nothing
to
avoid
bundling
Bruno
Henrique’s
expertly
placed
delivery
into
his
own
net,
with
Al
Hilal’s
frustration
evident
when
Carrillo’s
moment
of
madness
saw
him
rightly
dismissed
to
end
any
hope
of
a
dramatic
twist
in
the
tale.


What
does
it
mean?
Flamengo
find
their
feet

For
a
side
who have not
been
shy
about
claiming
they
can
beat
Liverpool,
Flamengo
made
an
extremely
slow
start
and
were
thoroughly
underwhelming
in
the
first
half.
Whatever
Jesus
said
at
half-time
clearly
worked,
though,
as
the
Brazilians emerged
a
different
team
after
the
restart,
and
made
sure
there
was
to
be
no
humiliating
exit.


Bruno
Henrique
shines
on
big
stage

Flamengo
are
blessed
with
significant
riches
of
attacking
talent,
but
it
was
Bruno
Henrique
who
shone
brightest
for
them
and
sparked
the
revival.
He
showed
composure
to
set
up
De
Arrascaeta,
ruthlessness
in
converting
Rafinha’s
cross,
and
precision
in
delivering
the
ball
that
was
turned
home
by
the
unfortunate
Albulayhi
to
settle
the
contest.


Gomis
gaffe
proves
costly

The
former
Lyon,
Swansea
City
and
Galatasaray
striker
scored
the
winner
against
ES
Tunis
in
the
second
round
but
a first-half
miss
on
this
occasion
was
dreadful
and
ultimately
proved
crucial
as
Flamengo
only
had
to
overturn
a
one-goal
deficit.


What’s
next?

Flamengo
wait
to
see
if
they
will
take
on
the
UEFA
Champions
League
winners
and
Premier
League
leaders
Liverpool
or
CONCACAF
Champions
League
holders
Monterrey.
Al
Hilal
will
also
be
paying
close
attention
to
that
clash,
as
they
will
meet
the
loser
in
the
third-place
play-off.

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