YOKOHAMA, Japan (AP) Atletico Nacional striker Orlando Berrio thanked Chapecoense fans for their support as the Colombian team finished third at the Club World Cup on Sunday.
“(They) have all been behind us and that is one of the reasons why we were able to perform well,” Berrio said after helping his team to a 4-3 win on penalties after a 2-2 draw against Mexican side Club America.
Nacional was scheduled to play Chapecoense in the first leg of the Copa Sudamericana final on Nov. 30 but the majority of the Brazilian team lost their lives in a plane crash while flying to the match.
Nacional appealed to the South American federation to declare Chapecoense the champion, a gesture which created a strong bond between the two clubs.
“Chapecoense is not a team from our country but their fans and everyone involved with the club supported us so I am very happy,” Berrio said.
Nacional took an early lead in the third-place playoff after an own-goal in the sixth minute by America defender Miguel Samudio.
Alejandro Guerra made it 2-0 in the 26th, steering home a cutback by Berrio, who was man of the match.
Michael Arroyo started the comeback for America in the 38th, slamming home from close range after Samudio’s ball into the box.
Substitute Oribe Peralta then made it 2-2 from the penalty spot in the 66th after Samudio had been fouled by Farid Diaz.
America wasn’t as accurate from 12 yards in the shootout though, with Osvaldo Martinez and Samudio missing the side’s first two efforts.
Substitute Miguel Borja then converted the winner with Nacional’s final spot kick.
“We discussed the tragedy a lot,” Nacional coach Reinaldo Rueda said.
“While playing we were thinking about the feelings of all the people related to Chapecoense and the families of the victims.”