OSAKA, Japan (AP) Colombia’s Atletico Nacional arrived in Japan for the Club World Cup on Saturday still dealing with the trauma of the recent airplane crash that caused the cancellation of the Copa Sudamericana final.
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Atletico was to play Brazilian club Chapecoense in the final but the plane carrying the Brazilian team to the game crashed, killing almost all on board.
Nacional qualified for the Club World Cup by winning the Copa Liberdatores in July and vowed to honor the memory of their rivals when they face either South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns or Japanese champions Kashima Antlers on Wednesday.
The directors of Atletico asked the governing body of South American football to award Chapecoense the Copa Sudamericana championship.
Atletico is hoping to advance to a final against Spanish giants Real Madrid on Dec. 18.