Brazil football club in plane crash

Brazil football club in plane crash

BBC:-A plane carrying 81 people, including a top Brazilian football team, has crashed on its approach to the city of Medellin in Colombia.

Colombia’s civil aviation body says only six people survived the crash, that occurred on a mountainside.

The chartered aircraft, flying from Brazil via Bolivia, was carrying members of the Chapecoense team.

The team had been due to play in the final of the Copa Sudamericana, against Medellin team Atletico Nacional.

The first leg of the final of the cup, South America’s second most important club competition, was scheduled for Wednesday but has now been suspended.

Organisers say Atletico Nacional has asked for Chapecoense to be awarded the cup.

The match was seen as the biggest in the history of the relatively small club, which entered Brazil’s top division for the first time in 2014.

Brazilian President Michel Temer announced three days of national mourning, and top Spanish clubs Real Madrid and Barcelona held a minute’s silence at the beginning of their practice sessions.

Shortly before boarding in Sao Paulo, Chapecoense manager Cadu Gaucho, 36, appeared in a video posted on the team’s Facebook site [in Portuguese] describing the trip to Medellin as “the club’s most important to date”

Playing in the final of the Copa Sudamericana was to be the highlight of a glorious season for the team from the small city of Santa Catarina, which has fewer than 200,000 inhabitants.

Founded in 1973, the team has only been playing in Brazil’s Serie A since 2014 but is currently ranked ninth ahead of much more famous and established teams such as Sao Paulo, Fluminense and Cruzeiro.

Last week, it became the first Brazilian team in three years to make it to the final of the Copa Sudamericana after beating Argentine side San Lorenzo.

One of the founders of the club, Alvadir Pelisser, told BBC Brasil the tragedy had put an “end to everyone’s dream”. “We were a family, I’m shocked,” he added.

The South American Football Confederation (Conmebol) said it was suspending “all activities”.

Chapecoense issued a brief statement saying: “May God be with our athletes, officials, journalists and other guests travelling with our delegation.”

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